Virat Kohli’s best is ahead of him: Greg Chappell
Virat Kohli’s success has led Greg Chappell to mull whether he could achieve more than Sachin Tendulkar. @Getty

Former Australia captain Greg Chappell, who coached India between 2005 and 2007, has reiterated his view that Virat Kohli  is this generation’s stand-out batsman but also believes that the best of the current Indian skipper lies ahead.

Speaking to Cricketnext, Chappell followed his assessment of Kohli last week by adding that the record-setting batsman’s drive was what sets him apart from others.

“I don’t know that there are many with more will to succeed than Virat,” said Chappell, who has seen Kohli from close quarters when he was India Under-19 captain. “He has a real desire. Something’s driving him that is beyond what most people are capable of. I think we still haven’t seen the best of him. I think maybe not better to come, but more of the good to come. What he has done in England on this tour has been quite exceptional.”

India have lost the Test series to England 1-3 with a game to spare, but along the way Kohli has scored 544 runs at 68 and is primed to break Rahul Dravid’s record for the most runs scored by an Indian batsman in a series in England (602 in four Tests in 2002).

Kohli’s success, especially since he became Test captain in 2015, has led Chappell to mull whether the 29-year-old could achieve more than Sachin Tendulkar.

Virat Kohli 35 ODI centuries
Virat Kohli has 35 ODI centuries to Sachin Tendulkar’s 49. @Getty

“He has probably exceeded what anyone would have expected. I think after (Sachin) Tendulkar, most people felt that’s the pinnacle but sport has a funny way of always throwing somebody up who can exceed what the champions of the past have done,” said Chappell. “Kohli as well as having great physical talent has the mental capacity and the emotional capacity to deal with what it takes to be successful in that really harsh environment.”

With 35 ODI centuries, Kohli is second only to Tendulkar who has a record 49. With 9,779 runs in 211 ODIs, Kohli is India’s fifth most successful batsman and looks certain to surpass MS Dhoni (10,046), Rahul Dravid (10,889) and Sourav Ganguly (11,363) even though Tendulkar’s phenomenal mark of 18,426 is out of reach.

In Tests, Kohli has scored 23 centuries in 70 Tests which is only fewer than Tendulkar (51), Dravid (36) and Sunil Gavaskar (34).