Virat Kohli
India's Virat Kohli. Image Credit: AFP

India and Pakistan clash against each other almost after a year tomorrow at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium in their first match of the Asia Cup 2022 and all eyes will be once again on one player which is Virat Kohli.

There are many reasons for Kohli being the focal talking point, first being is his poor form in the shortest format to even Pakistan players wishing that they want to see him back in form. He was one player who had been in the thick of things for almost a decade since he made his debut and was leading scorer in all formats. But all good things have to come to an end and so did his form, he stepped down from the T20 captainship, lost his ODI captainship which led him to also give up his Test captaincy. And the world changed around him.

Timely break

According to Ravi Shastri, he was overcooked having played more than 50 percent of the games than any other player and needed a timely break which he took after the England white ball series. And he admitted candidly that he came to the realization that he had been trying to fake intensity a bit in his determination to keep playing be it for team India or the IPL.

He added that for the first time in ten years he did not touch the bat with which few years ago he was scoring runs for fun in every format and was the undisputed king in all formats. He added he was trying too hard to convince himself that he can continue playing even though his body was not ready for it. He was not in control of his mind and was playing non stop cricket for the last ten years. He has been one player who has been looked at as someone very mentally strong and he admits he is but everyone has a limit and everyone has to self realize that or else it’s unhealthy for your body and it will break down.

Losing perspective

And in a sport which in India is followed by more than 1.5 billion people and everyone is looking at you through your professional identity somewhere you start losing perspective as a human being. And when he finally hit the nail by saying that ‘faking being strong is far worse than admitting to being weak’ and he has no shame in admitting in saying that he was mentally feeling weak.

After his 40 day break, can Kohli find his mojo again which has made him rule the game for so long? Can he adapt himself to the gung-ho style of cricket which team India are playing or will he be playing his normal style in which he has scored heaps of runs. His first big challenge is against arch rivals team Pakistan who beat India last year by ten wickets at the same venue and it can’t get bigger than this to challenge himself.