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Virat Kohli best batsman in the world across formats, says Junaid Khan

The Pakistan pacer heaped praise on Kohli's consistency and preferred him over Steve Smith, Joe Root, Kane Williamson and his teammate Babar Azam.

India TV Sports Desk India TV Sports Desk
New Delhi Published on: July 27, 2020 12:40 IST
Virat Kohli best batsman in the world across formats, says Junaid Khan
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Virat Kohli best batsman in the world across formats, says Junaid Khan

Pakistan pacer Junaid Khan hailed Indian captain Virat Kohli and rate him above his contemporaries to call him the best batsman in all three formats.

The Pakistan pacer heaped praise on Kohli's consistency and preferred him over Steve Smith, Joe Root, Kane Williamson and his teammate Babar Azam.

"No doubt (Virat) Kohli is the best batsman in all three formats. If you ask anyone, they would say that players like Babar Azam, Joe Root, Kane Williamson, Steve Smith are the currently the best in the world but on top of the list is Kohli because he has been outstanding in all three formats," Junaid said in a video uploaded on Cricingif YouTube channel.

Junaid was once called Kohli's top nemesis on the field, after he got the better of Kohli three times in one series. In 2012, Pakistan beat India 2-1 in an ODI series in India and Junaid scalped the wicket of Kohli three times in the series.

"Before that tour, I was playing domestic cricket in Faisalabad. I had bowled around 35-40 overs in each match so I had developed momentum heading into the series," Junaid said.

"I was making a comeback in the ODIs and when we were going to India, I knew that this is my only chance to make a comeback into the team.

"I was permanent in the Test team but had to comeback to ODIs. Secondly, I knew if I would perform well in India, I would need to take wickets," he added.

Kohli struggled miserably against Junaid as he managed to get only  3 runs off the 24 ball he faced against him. The series ended as Kohli's one of the worst with the scores of  0 (Chennai), 6 (Kolkata) and 7 (Delhi).

Junaid also recalled his conversation with Kohli prior to the series when the latter joked with him regarding the pitch conditions in India.

"The first ball I bowled to him was a wide but the next ball when I beat him, I thought 'he's a normal batsman'. Then I got some momentum," Junaid said.

"Virat jokingly said to me ahead of the series that these are Indian pitches and that balls won't swing or seam here. I said ‘we will see, because I have plenty of momentum with me as well."

He has played a total of 22 Tests, 76 ODIs and 9 T20Is in which he has scalped 71, 110 and 9 wickets respectively.

(With IANS Inputs)

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