India captain Virat Kohli on Wednesday said he is feeling blessed to have the opportunity to play Test cricket for the country.
Kohli, who has been a flagbearer of the longest format of the game, said nothing can match the feeling of playing a competitive Test match.
“Nothing comes close to playing an intense game in whites. What a blessing to be able to play test cricket for India,” Kohli said in a social media post sharing photos of him in India whites.
Kohli, who lost the No. 1 Test batsman spot to Steve Smith earlier this year, has never shied away from expressing his love for the red-ball format of the game.
‘Test cricket made me a better person’
In a recent interaction with former England batsman Kevin Pieteresen, Kohli said Test cricket has made him a better person and he loves playing the format because it’s a ‘representation of life’.
“Because it is the representation of life. Whether you get runs or not, you have to clap when others are batting. You have to go back to your room, get up and come the next day.
“You have to follow the routine whether you like it or not. It’s like life where you don’t have the option of not competing. Test cricket has made me a better person,” Kohli said.
Kohli had also expressed his reservation about the proposed 4-day format of Tests, said it will be unfair to the purest format of the game.
“I don’t think that’s fair to the purest format of the game,” Kohli said.
“How cricket started initially, five-day Test matches was the highest test you can have at international level. It shouldn’t be altered.”
At a time when when the relevance and popularity of Test cricket has become a major talking point, Virat Kohli’s love for the game is being seen as a major push to the traditional format.
Former South Africa captain Graeme Smith had said Kohli’s love for Test cricket keeps the format relevant in the country that loves the Indian Premier League.
“World cricket is lacking a huge amount of superstars. Maybe one or two in England. I think Virat [Kohli] is that guy [superstar],” Smith said in his address at the Jagmohan Dalmiya Annual Conclave (Chapter II) in Kolkata in 2018.
“As long as Virat keeps promoting Test cricket as an icon and superstar, we all have the chance to keep the game relevant,” Smith added.