After impressive performances in limited-overs format over the 22-month period since making his international debut, Virat Kohli finally received the much-awaited call-up in Test cricket on this day in 2011. Kohli made his debut in the longest format of the game against West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica.
Batsman Abhinav Mukund and bowler Praveen Kumar also made their Test debuts in the same match.
The start was far from ideal for Virat in terms of individual performance, as he could only register scores of 4 and 15 in the two innings. India, however, secured a 63-run win in the game, thanks to Rahul Dravid's century in the second innings and impressive all-round bowling performance.
Virat had a poor outing throughout the series, scoring only 76 runs in five innings. He eventually missed India's tour to England later in the year, but was recalled for the home series against the Windies. After scoring fifties in both the innings of the final Test, Virat began to find his feet in the longest format.
Virat followed the performance with a decent outing in the Australian tour in 2011/12. Even as India suffered a disastrous whitewash in the series, Virat was a rare positive from the tour Down Under. He also scored his first Test century in the final Test in Adelaide and ended the series with 300 runs in eight innings.
After further individual success in the home season against New Zealand, England and Australia, the Delhi batsman became a mainstay in the Indian Test lineup. In 2013, when Sachin Tendulkar retired from all forms of cricket, Virat Kohli assumed his position at the coveted number four spot. In his first match at the position since Tendulkar's retirement, Virat scored 119 and 96 against South Africa in Johannesburg, announcing his succession to the Indian batting great in style.
This was also the first century by a batsman from the sub-continent at the venue since 1998.
The Indian batsman faced his first blip in form during the tour to England in 2014, where he failed to cross the fifty-run mark across all the eight innings. However, he made an incredible comeback in the tour to Australia later in the year, slamming four centuries in as many matches. The Tour Down Under in 2014 also marked the beginning of Virat Kohli's reign as Test captain after MS Dhoni announced a sudden retirement from the longest format of the game. Virat scored 692 runs in four Tests - the highest by an Indian batsman in a Test series in Australia. (ALSO READ: On this day, Ganguly and Dravid made grand entrance in Tests at Lord's)
In 2016, Virat Kohli led India to a 3-0 whitewash in the home series against New Zealand, which secured India the No.1 spot in Test rankings. With a double century each in the series against West Indies, New Zealand, England and Bangladesh, the Indian captain became the first batsman to score double tons in four successive Test series, breaking Donald Bradman and Rahul Dravid's joint-record of three.
In 2017, Virat scored two double hundreds in a single series against Sri Lanka. A year later, he finally got the monkey off his back in England, when he silenced his critics with spectacular performances in the five-match Test series. He scored two centuries and three half-centuries on the tour, eventually ending as the series' top-scorer with 593 runs.
In the 2018/19 tour of Australia, Virat Kohli became the first Indian captain to lead the side to a series victory Down Under. The Indian pace battery showed tremendous improvement under Virat's captaincy in the matches leading to the Australian tour, and the side bore fruits of the hard work as the pace quartet of Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav and Ishant Sharma played a key role in the historic victory.
With the beginning of the World Test Championship (WTC) last year, Virat led India to whitewash series victories against West Indies, South Africa and Bangladesh, before being at the receiving end of one in a two-match series in New Zealand in February-March. India continue to be at the top of the table in the WTC.
Widely regarded as one of the most complete batsman in modern-day cricket, Virat Kohli has played 86 Tests so far, scoring 7,240 runs at an average of 53.63. He has scored 27 centuries and 22 half-centuries. With 33 wins in 55 Tests as captain, Virat Kohli is the most successful captain of the Indian team in the longest format.