Virat Kohli © Getty Images
Virat Kohli made his ODI debut against Sri Lanka in 2008, and has since recorded some of his best performances against them © Getty Images

Nov 5, 2014

Born on November 5, 1988, Virat Kohli celebrated his 26th birthday on Wednesday. The Indian One-Day International (ODI) No. 3 is rated as one of the best players of the modern game. Born and brought up in Delhi, Kohli is yet another example of how the national capital is a breeding ground of good Indian batsmen. His senior teammates Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir started the trend which has been continued by Kohli, Shikhar Dhawan, and now Unmukt Chand.

Kohli has had a tremendous start to his international career. Just before India’s tour of England in 2014, Kohli was the only batsman to average over 45 in all three formats of the game. Unfortunately his horror series in England saw his average drop drastically to a sub-40 level. However, he continues to dominate in the other two formats.

Virat Kohli M Runs HS Ave SR 100s 50s
ODIs 142 5901 183 51.31 89.89 20 31
Tests 29 1855 119 39.46 50.06 6 9
T20Is 28 972 78* 46.28 131.7 0 9

Kohli is also India’s vice captain in ODIs, and has led the team on a few occasions. In fact, in the ongoing series between India and Sri Lanka he was selected to lead India in MS Dhoni’s absence for the first three ODIs. Kohli is also captain of Indian Premier League (IPL) side Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).

Kohli made his ODI debut against Sri Lanka in 2008. He scored his first half-century in his fourth match, also against Sri Lanka, while opening the innings for India with Gambhir in the absence of Sehwag and Sachin Tendulkar. Incidentally, Kohli also scored his first ODI ton against Sri Lanka. In fact, Kohli seems to have a special fondness of them; he once scored an 86-ball 133 not out against them to help India chase down 320 runs in under 40 overs.

Kohli already has 20 ODI tons, and is third on the list of leading ODI century-makers for India behind Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly. One feels that he could well go past both men if he keeps up his current rate of scoring tons. Since becoming a permanent member of India’s side, he has rarely faced an extended patch of poor form, barring his immensely disappointing tour of England. He was the leading run-scorer and Man of the Tournament in the ICC World T20 2014, and scored a superb 77 in the final that India lost to Sri Lanka.