Virat Kohli, since breaking into the national side as an impulsive youngster, has achieved unpreceedented milestones at the biggest level. With his consistency, fitness levels and temperament, the Indian skipper is often hailed as the best modern-day batsman.
32-year-old Kohli has over 29,000 runs and 70 centuries under his belt till date. Having represented India in 86 Tests, 248 ODIs and 82 T20Is, Kohli's numbers in international cricket are staggering, to say the least. However, with increasing age, Kohli will have to make necessary adjustments, according to legendary India all-rounder Kapil Dev.
Kapil, who led India to their maiden World Cup in 1983, said that Kohli has to correct himself technically with age and avoid playing across. Citing examples of Virender Sehwag and Rahul Dravid, Kapil highlighted the importance of eyesight for a batsman.
“If you look at Kohli and Smith, they’re in the same boat, because they’ve reached an age Smith where the eyesight starts dropping. They both like to play across the legs and both can be candidates for an LBW. From 28 to 34, you are the best but you have to adjust your eyesight,” Kapil told Ayaz Memon at Hindustan Times Leadership Summit.
“What happened to Virender Sehwag, Rahul Dravid? What happened to so many great cricketers? Once the eyes get weak, if they don’t correct themselves technically, they will get out a lot more frequently. Where [Kane] Williamson and [Joe] Root look compact is that they don’t play so much across,” Kapil further said.
According to Kapil, Kohli -- instead of his favourite flick shot from the off-side -- should try playing it straight to adjust with his weakening eyesight.
“If Kohli can handle himself for six months by playing the ball straight ‘I don’t have to flick the ball from the off-side,’ which is his favourite shot too. Then he will look more dangerous than any other player. His eyesight is not always going to be of an 18-year-old. So he will have to adjust himself,” said Kapil.