International Domestic

The Virat, MS Dhoni and Anil Kumble huddle

1st Jan, 1970

The Indian Test Captain speaks about cricket’s expansion, leadership group in the team and lots more in an interview

Just watch Virat Kohli on the pitch or in the nets. He puts so much passion into his batting, fielding or anything that can add value to team’s success. Watching him sweat it out between the 22 yards is akin to watching Van Gogh write a concerto, Amadeus-style.

Kohli’s growth both as a batsman and as a leader has been phenomenal. The clarity of thought, sense of security and teamsmanship also reflects in his interactions. We at BCCI.TV spoke to the Test Captain and found out more about what goes behind the huddle formed by him, MS Dhoni and Anil Kumble.

Excerpts from the interview:

Skipper first things first - Congratulations on the hat-trick of Test series’ win. You must be very pleased with that kind of a record.

Yes, it has been a really good season for us. Started off from Australia, we needed to get back on top as far as Test cricket is concerned and we have been able to do that because of the consistent performances by all the team members. Basically, one goal we have agreed to achieve and be on the same path. It has been a complete team effort. I know it might sound a bit repetitive but that is the truth. I mean everyone bought in the idea we got for Test cricket. The results have been pleasing so far even though we still have a long season ahead.

You have had a look at the ground here now. You first thoughts. And tell us about BCCI's efforts to reach out to newer markets.

Well, I am pretty excited to be in Miami. I’ve heard about a lot of cricket being played here. It always fascinated me that cricket can be played here in the United States of America. It has happened for a while that the other teams have played. Now, it is the Indian team, which will play here. There is a lot of Indian population here in Florida, especially in Fort Lauderdale. The team is also delighted to be here. 

Which is your favourite American sport - baseball, basketball or American football?

Well, basketball. It was globalized by Michael Jordan. I think he is the greatest of that sport and one of the greatest sportsmen ever. He created that excitement even in India with Basketball. Everyone I knew was a fan of Chicago Bulls because of Jordan. We used to catch those games every now and then. So, basketball is one of the American Sports towards which I have been inclined. I haven’t really followed the others.

We know how disciplined you are when it comes to your diet. Any American fast food that has tempted you so far?

Well, I love the hotdogs here. I came here in 2012 and had a quite a few hotdogs. Now I am completely off them, but if I ever had to have a cheat day, I will have a hotdog.

We are all intrigued to know what the conversation is like when Anil bhai, MS and you sit together. A bit of insight will be great.

Those are sort of management discussions about the team, about the combination. I cannot speak much about them on camera. One of the good things about Anil bhai is that he brings the vice-captain in. Even with me he used to bring in Ajinkya and we used to have discussions. He knows if something happens to me or something happens to MS (Dhoni) then we are the people to step-in. It is always good to have another voice to throw light on things, which we might not be thinking about. It is always a nice discussion while speaking to two intelligent people about the game.