‘Brilliant’ Virat Kohli pushing the boundaries: Kane Williamson
Kane Williamson on Virat Kohli: "Certainly a player I admire and enjoy to watch." © AFP

On a day in which Virat Kohli termed him as the “most attractive” batsman in world cricket when on song, New Zealand captain Kane Williamson has returned the compliment by expressing his admiration for his opposite number.

The ODI series starting at McLean Park on Wednesday pits Kohli – today named skipper of the ICC’s Test and ODI XIs of 2018 – against Williamson, along with him and Joe Root widely regarded as the best three captain-batsmen in world cricket. Kohli and Williamson go back to the 2008 Under-19 World Cup days and both hold the other in high regard.(ALSO READ: Beating well-balanced New Zealand at home is India’s biggest challenge: Virat Kohli)

“Someone like Virat is certainly a player I admire and enjoy to watch and he’s pushing the boundaries of the game so that’s brilliant,” said Williamson in Napier on Tuesday ahead of the series opener. “He’s a respectful guy and I’ve known him for a very long time but as a player, obviously, word class and our focus is more about that and his cricketing ability and how we can combat him as best as we can. (VIDEO: Series will be a true test for India ahead of World Cup)

“Obviously a world-class player, Virat, and he’s always a challenge to come up against and is someone who is most admired in terms of how he goes about his cricket and he’s formidable in his run scoring so he’s definitely a player of note to try to shut down.”