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  5. Virat Kohli vs James Anderson: Battle of behemoths - One last time

Virat Kohli vs James Anderson: Battle of behemoths - One last time

The battle between Virat Kohli and James Anderson will be under the lens, perhaps for the one final time.

Kartik Mehindru Written By: Kartik Mehindru New Delhi Published on: June 30, 2022 16:51 IST
James Anderson and Virat Kohli | File Photo
Image Source : GETTY

James Anderson and Virat Kohli | File Photo

India and England are all set to battle in the fifth and final Test in Edgbaston starting July 1. While the bigger story in Birmingham is the chance for India to win only their fourth series on England soil, the battle between the two giants - Virat Kohli and James Anderson will be under the lens, perhaps for the one final time.

Over the years - this story has witnessed so many twists and turns. It has been a story straight out of a Hollywood drama. It was in 2014 that the rivalry started. Virat Kohli wasn't really the batsman he is today. Anderson being Anderson, made a meal out of him - every single time. The plan was simple. Bowl outside off-stump, in the channel of uncertainty, and Virat would get out. Nothing more, nothing less.

Kohli would later confess that he knew he was going there just to get out. He knew he wouldn't score runs. That was the kind of tour he had. But as they say, it's not about how hard you hit, it's about how hard you can get hit, and still move forward. 

Four years later - India was to tour England again. Kohli vs Anderson grabbed all the headlines. The battle in 2014 was David vs Goliath - in 2018 - it was all about two giants colliding on top of their game. If 2014 belonged to Jimmy Anderson. 2018 belonged to Virat Kohli. The legend scored 593 runs in 5 innings. Not a single time did he get out to Anderson. 

The next chapter unfolded in 2021. Virat Kohli was starting to wither down a bit. Anderson, on the other hand, as he has always been, was on the top of his game. Yes, the man doesn't age. Kohli had another bad tour. But what stood out was his way of getting dismissed. He continuously knicked the balls outside the off-stump and got out in a similar way to 2014. 

The fifth and final test match at Edgbaston will add a new chapter to this storied rivalry. Jimmy Anderson, like always, is bowling as well as ever. On the other hand, while once invincible, Kohli has shown signs of mortality.

Will it be the good old Anderson who comes out on top? Or will it be Kohli who will reign supreme? Whatever the result, the ultimate winner promises to be the game of cricket.

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