Virat Kohli is enjoying supreme form at the ongoing World Cup and is currently the second-highest run getter in the tournament after Quinton de Kock. Kohli has so far accumulated 543 runs from eight matches, which include two tons and four half-centuries.
While Kohli has been in imperious form, there have been a few outside noises criticising the former India captain’s approach. Many have accused the talismanic batter of stats padding and keeping personal milestones ahead of team’s interest. Not just fans but even former cricketers have expressed such opinions, with former Pakistan all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez noting it as “selfish.“
The reaction by Hafeez came after Kohli’s record-equalling ton in the clash between India and South Africa at Eden Gardens, Kolkata, which the hosts won by 243 runs. Kohli, who slammed his 49th ODI ton, now stands on level terms with batting great Sachin Tendulkar in the list of batters with highest number of centuries in ODIs.
However, former India pacer and bowling coach Venkatesh Prasad had a strong response to those criticising Kohli. In an explosive tweet, the former India cricketer wrote: “Hearing funny arguments about Virat Kohli being Selfish and obsessed with personal milestone. Yes Kohli is selfish, selfish enough to follow the dream of a billion people, selfish enough to strive for excellence even after achieving so much, selfish enough to set new benchmarks, selfish enough to ensure his team wins. Yes, Kohli is selfish.”
If we look at Kohli’s knock against South Africa, he returned unbeaten on 101 off 121 balls, which featured ten 4s. Together with Shreyas Iyer, he added 134 runs for the third wicket, a partnership which took India to a massive 326/5 in 50 overs.
South Africa, who have been a powerhouse with the bat, failed to resist the Indian attack on a slow Eden track. Ravindra Jadeja troubled the Proteas right after being introduced and finished the contest with a five-wicket haul. His effort helped India fold South Africa for 83 in just 27.1 overs.