Is Virat Kohli making you fall in love again?

Time to make more than a song and dance about him.

 |  5-minute read |   20-05-2016
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Just for the record, Virat Kohli does not open for India in T20s. He opens for RCB in the IPL. He now has four centuries in one season. All while opening. And he isn’t quite done yet.

He’s just warming up with seven stitches in his left hand. How does he do it? He grimaces when he takes a catch. Not when he bats though. Virat Kohli does not captain India in T20s. Does any of this make sense? After this IPL, not really.

Also read: IPL 9 shows Dhoni's days are over, Kohli is the new king

Why should Kohli play under Dhoni? What is there for him to learn under Dhoni? If he captains the team in a match that lasts five days, surely being Dhoni’s understudy in a 100-over or 40-over match will not rock his world.

Right now, Kohli is not scoring runs, he’s bossing runs. He’s not captaining a team, he’s bossing a tournament. And RCB, including the world’s best in the format, AB de Villiers, Chris Gayle and Shane Watson are happy to have him as their boss, their supreme leader.

dhoni-bd_052016010407.jpg Is it time for Dhoni to take a call between ODIs and T20s?

This season, there’s no owner - Virat Kohli owns RCB. He owns the IPL. He owns you and me. He feeds on our energy just as we feed on his. He can be the reason why cricket finds love in India again.

Also read: I hate Virat Kohli (and so should you)

How long will it take for India to recalibrate and embrace the power of Virat Kohli? Not half-heartedly as a Test captain but the boss in all three formats, how long? The longer it takes, the more they’re draining Kohli’s powers. Right now, Indian cricket needs to feed on the Kohli alternate energy plant. And suck it for all its worth.

You can bet, the more he gives Indian cricket, the more energy he’ll regenerate. This is a time for both India and Kohli to go all the way dammit, not tickle each other with some teenage flirtations.

Elsewhere, Dhoni has captained a team fraught with injuries. Not that it has changed Dhoni’s thinking: he has sat back, content to play the last few overs, even promoting Ashwin before himself. For Dhoni, it’s still finding contentment in that last over or hit a last-ball six, and going at a little faster than run-a-ball.

Possibly, the format has overtaken Dhoni, and the wily cricketer that he is, he is not in denial, nor is he trying to fight it. He’s content, playing the game the way he knows it, waiting it out, fighting battles he can win, and white flagging those he can’t.

It’s a good time for Dhoni to reflect on what lies ahead. He still might be India’s best wicketkeeper but is he their best wicketkeeper batsman? What does Dhoni bring to the team if he doesn’t lead it?

Also read: Shame Dhoni does not believe in himself any longer

Just as Dhoni made a differential between Test cricket and the limited overs format, is it time for MS to take a call between ODIs and T20s? If not as a player, then at least as a captain?

Dhoni would know, better than most, that Indian cricket is not set in cement any longer. 

 And all the cheerleaders sing Vir-at!

But since when did cheerleaders start to sing?

And the soundtrack of the match goes Vir-at!

But since when did matches have soundtracks?

And all those lofty politicians in their VIP boxes chirp Vir-at

Hey, this doesn’t make any sense

But then neither does Vir-at

 

The IPL was forlorn and forgotten

Limping on a broken crutch

Of those same old voices

Of those same old noises

It didn’t stand a chance

RCB didn’t stand a chance

It all was such a f**king nuisance

Oh yeah, a terrible, terrible nuisance

 

Of injuries and perjuries

The Supreme Court was still breathing down hard

The only buzz was Big B and Bhogle

And Dhoni had nothing to add

On Twitter, or on the cricket field

It was IPL season 9

Nothing quite appeared fine

 

Virat scored his first T20 hundred

In a losing cause

Nobody as much as paused

The Sachin comparisons were out

Hell, he even got there on the last ball

 

Next time he didn’t wait so long

He got there a full over before

First one was with a four

Here he hit a six

To reach his thre- digit score

In a winning cause

Another six, another century

In a winning cause

Nobody as much as paused

Fourth one was the fastest

T20 shrunk in size

Yet he seized his prize

Another four, another century

In a winning cause

Nobody as much as paused

Except for the rain

It stopped.

For Vir-at to start

Go bang, bang, bang

And once he was done

And the match was all but stitched up

It started to rain again

It’s a new start of Vir-at’s reign

And if you refuse to see it

You are blind

And if you refuse to see it

You have lost your mind.

 

And all of Bangalore sings Vir-at

And all of India sings Vir-at

Vir-at has won the IPL

Without even making the playoffs

 

It was IPL season 9

Everything appeared f-i-n-e.

It’s just that it wasn’t

Old chiefs can be so stubborn

When they want to hang on to what they’ve lost

When all they’ve lost is all that they’ve won,

Once upon a time. 

Writer

Gaurav Sethi Gaurav Sethi @boredcricket

Bored Cricket Crazy Indians (BCCI!) - play with cricket #ThankYouSachin #ChePujara #Jatman began here.

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