NEW DELHI (TNS): Former Pakistan captain and maverick batsman of the 80s Javed Miandad has hailed India skipper Virat Kohli as a “genius who is the best batsman in the world”.
Kohli scored his 34th ODI century – an unbeaten 160 – to set up India’s 124-run win over South Africa in Cape Town, which has left the No 1 ranked ODI team up 3-0 in the six-match series.
In an interview to Pakpassion.net, Miandad singled out Kohli’s technical prowess and ability to rescue India from difficult situations and steer them to victories as the hallmark of a “great” batsman – traits which saw Miandad earn cult status in world cricket during his playing days (16,213 runs in 357 international games).
“In Virat Kohli’s case his batting method is what allows him to score runs not just once but almost every time he comes in to bat. If a batsman’s technique is bad, he can put some runs on the board once in a while, but he will not be able to do that consistently which is exactly true in Kohli’s case. To me the mark of a great batsman, like Kohli is the fact that he can vary his technique by quickly understanding the strengths and weaknesses of the bowlers. Kohli is a genius who is the best batsman in the world,” said Miandad, who scored 7381 runs at an average of 41.70 in 233 ODIs.
Miandad also spoke of the recent ICC Under-19 World Cup in New Zealand, which was won by the Indian U-19 team led by Prithvi Shaw and coached by Rahul Dravid. India U-19s were unbeaten all tournament, and in the semi-finals decimated Pakistan U-19s by 203 runs. Just two Pakistan players made it to double-digits as the innings folded for just 69 in 29.3 overs.
Miandad, never one to hold back his views on the state of Pakistan cricket, felt the Pakistan U-19 team was fortunate to have made the knockouts of the junior World Cup but that it would be unfair to judge them by this tournament, given the lack of support in the country.