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Virat Kohli admits, “My game will be nothing if I am not intense enough on the field”

Virat Kohli also spoke about his fitness regimen and his charity foundation.

By Jatin Sharma -

Virat Kohli with his One8 brand

Virat Kohli’s statement, “I want every ball to be an event that we win as a team,” is the evidence of how intense he is about his game and his team on the field. Being aggressive on field and taking the life by the scruff of its neck is something Virat Kohli has built his reputation on.

He showed how his caliber and his mettle when he played a Ranji Trophy match despite losing his father and then directly going to the funeral procession from the ground, after  taking his team to safety and getting out.

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Virat Kohli recently launched a scholarship program for sportspeople via his Virat Kohli Foundation, which had also organized the Indian Sports Honors in Mumbai. Hindustan Times caught up with Virat Kohli for an exclusive chat and here are the excerpts from the interview.

Talking about the pressure each time he walks onto the field, Virat said, “As an individual, the only thing that’s in my hand is preparation and [having] a [positive] mindset. And I am fully committed for that. In fact, I make sure that I am absolutely giving it my all to prepare and think in a certain way. After that, I just go out and enjoy myself. For me, it’s about doing my duty for the team and the sport that has given me everything. So, to me, what people say or write about me does not matter at all, not even one per cent.

He continued,” In fact, it has never mattered to me because I have seen that whatever is said or written about you is very unproductive. You perform [badly] a couple of times and those things (good things) go out of the window in no time but they also come back in no time, so it shouldn’t matter to any individual; it certainly doesn’t matter to me.

Virat called playing for Team India his biggest high, “I take this [being a cricketer] as an opportunity to go out there and just represent my country. I don’t want any tags or to be called something. I also don’t want to be remembered as someone [special]. I just want to do my duty on a daily basis to the best of my potential, help my teammates grow into better cricketers along with the team’s journey and obviously keep myself too in a good space.

He also said that he loves spending time with his family.

Virat Kohli with his family | Virat Kohli Twitter

Virat said, “I have gotten used to it now. Obviously, when you get a few days off, you want to go and meet your family but that’s about it. There is so much happening all the time that even if you manage to meet your parents or family for a couple of days, that’s good enough.

On being asked the reason behind him setting up the Virat Kohli Foundation, Kohli said, “We set up the foundation in 2013 and had announced it during the first-ever football game (an exhibition game) that we organise every year. The main idea came from the thought of giving back to society and having the ability to be in a position where you can help.

He further said, “We thought there was no better way of promoting sports and, at the same time, provide infrastructure and facilities to athletes who can make the nation proud in the years to come.

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Virat Kohli is often known as the fittest cricketer on the planet and he has set a very high benchmark when it comes to other cricketers who want to play for Team India.

He shared his fitness routine,” Off season, when I am doing two sessions a day, I end up spending around four hours in the gym. You can’t spend four hours in one go in a gym as you won’t have any energy left (smiles) and so, it’s not productive. So there are two phases (of the workouts) throughout the day.

He continued, “Generally, I do a lot of power lifting; cross fit exercises, sprint exercises and speed workouts including my lifting and speed-strength. I also do power endurance and shuttle (sprints). So, all these sort of things are done on a regular basis.

Virat Kohli launched his chritable foundation in 2013

About his involvement in the Virat Kohli foundation, Virat explained his role, “The whole idea behind doing it at this moment is that since I am still involved in my sport and have a lot of connect with my fans, whatever I want to address or changes that I want to bring about in the surrounding or society, that can have maximum impact. Even when you are done playing whatever sport you play, you will be good but the impact would be much more while I am still playing for the country.

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Virat shared his favorite sports other than cricket, saying, “Badminton and football are my most favourite ones. Badminton is a racket sport and we play [cricket] with a bat. So the shuttle sense, bat sense and even racket sense are very similar, besides the understanding of holding a bat. A lot of cricketers play badminton as well and they are pretty good at it because of these reasons. Football, too, comes naturally due to the ball sense and the same goes for tennis as well as table tennis.

He also chose to be Kidambi Srikanth instead of Lionel Messi in a hypothetical situation.

He said, “I would choose Kidambi Srikanth (smiles). I think since we see someone like Messi score goals and all, everyone aspires to [be like that] but you need to have a lot of natural skills to do that. But I would have certainly tried my level best at badminton.

 

 

Jatin Sharma

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