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Southampton: Jul 31, 2014
Virat Kohli, Indian batsman and vice-captain had dinner with Michael Vaughan, former England captain, at a Brazilian restaurant in Southampton on Tuesday night. This was revealed by the latter on BBC Radio. What they chatted about has become a matter of speculation. There was no word from either as to what they discussed, though sources close to them indicate the conversation wasn’t restricted to the merits of the protein rich Brazilian cuisine.
Kohli is internationally recognised as the most gifted batsman in India today. His record across all formats — T20, One-Dayers and Tests — compares favourably with Sachin Tendulkar, no less. Indeed, he was the wielder of the willow most feared by England at the start of the current test series; and the one cricket followers in England much looked forward to watching this summer.
But he has so far disappointed and not fulfilled his potential on this tour. People are wondering what’s gone wrong. He was expected to take the English bowling by the scruff of the neck. Barring brief glimpses of his undoubted class, this hasn’t happened. Delhi batsmen are generally not accustomed to playing swing. It may not be a coincidence that Kohli as well as Shikhar Dhawan have struggled in English conditions. But the former is too good a player not to strike success sooner rather than later.
After a decade and a half of misery, England found winning ways under Vaughan’s captaincy, including regaining the Ashes in 2005. He hails from northern English county of Yorkshire. By and large, the ball swings and seams in northern England more than in the south. Vaughan was groomed to cope with such twin threats. He was one of the best batsmen of his generation, technically correct against the moving ball. He was the right person to talk to on how to master the vagaries of England. Soon it will be evident if the tete-a-tete bears fruit.
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