Indian captain Virat Kohli is widely regarded as one of the best batsmen in the modern era. He has drawn comparisons from the great Sachin Tendulkar, who rules the run-scoring charts across Tests and ODIs. However, former Indian batsman Sunil Gavaskar has now pitted Virat Kohli against West Indies great Sir Vivian Richards.
'Viv', as he is affectionately known, was one of the best players -- especially in the limited-overs format during his era. Gavaskar, drawing the comparison, said that he bats "exactly like Viv Richards."
“It was very difficult to keep Viv Richards quiet when he was at the crease. Similarly, if you look at Virat Kohli’s batting today, in the same ball and same line, he will use his top hand and score a boundary towards the extra cover region and will use the bottom hand and score a boundary towards the mid-on and mid-wicket region,” Gavaskar said on Star Sports’ show ‘Winning the Cup - 1983’.
“That’s why Virat Kohli is considered as the No. 1 player because he bats exactly like Viv Richards. Earlier, Gundappa Vishwanath, VVS Laxman used to bat like this.”
Last year, Virat Kohli and Viv Richards sat together for a candid chat during India's tour to West Indies, where they talked about their approach to the game. Both were in agreement in terms of how they approached their practice sessions ahead of the match.
"I felt like this many times where the pitches are fast and bouncy, or even in the nets when you are playing, I am sure you wouldn't go to the practice just randomly practising," Kohli said, seeking the opinion of Richards on his approach to net practice. (ALSO READ: On this day, Rohit Sharma arrived at the big stage and 'Hitman' still owns it after 13 years)
"You would go with the intent, with the purpose that I'm going to stand up against my own bowlers and not get out, not even hit a ball on the edge, hit everything from the middle of the bat."
Richards, who, like Kohli, has dominated bowlers of his time, replied: "It is the same thinking, you go and try to eliminate maybe the getting out process, but I have always found nets to be claustrophobic for me and I never felt comfortable."
The Indian skipper responded saying: "I think exactly the same things about net practice how it can be claustrophobic and I prefer having a centre wicket net which is open against our bowlers with fielders so that I have a match simulation."