Virat Kohli says change in work ethic stemmed from desire to strike fear in opposition as 'impact' batsman

'There was a time when I walked in to bat, there wasn't any fear or respect in the opposition corner,' Kohli said in a sports web-show, 'In Depth with Graham Bensinger'

Press Trust of India, Sep 07, 2019 19:46:10 IST

New Delhi: Virat Kohli says it was the absence of fear or respect for him in the opposition's eye that has forced him to change his work ethic and become the "impact player" that he is today.

While most aspects of his life are well-documented, an interview of him with Emmy winning journalist Graham Bensinger is aimed at providing a peek into the life of India's most popular and active sportsperson to a more global audience.

Virat Kohli says change in work ethic stemmed from desire to strike fear in opposition as impact batsman

File image of Virat Kohli. AP

Kohli, who is the world's premier batsman, spoke about how he worked on his fitness that lifted his game after coming back from the Australian tour in 2012.

"There was a time when I walked in to bat, there wasn't any fear or respect in the opposition corner," Kohli said in a sports web-show, 'In Depth with Graham Bensinger'.

"I didn't want to walk into the ground thinking that the opposition feels that this guy is a pushover, who is going to do no damage. Just didn't want to be another player as I wanted to make an impact."

"I wanted that when I walk in, the teams should think that we need to get this guy out or else we will lose the game. And if I don't want to be that guy, then there is something wrong in my head," the Indian captain said.

He spoke about how fitness has become an integral part of his life and how it has helped him recover quickly, even as the Indian team crisscrossed the United Kingdom during a six-week World Cup campaign.

"During the World Cup, every game my energy level was 120 per cent. My recovery was so fast that the average distance I covered in a game was 15 kms. I would come back, do my recovery treatments and travel to another city and soon I was ready to train again."

"There was so much energy that I could do gym sessions and play 10 games in such a short span of time 35 days. Played each game at high intensity and never felt like this before. There was no stiffness in my body," said Kohli.

While he considers his idol Sachin Tendulkar's skills as a cricketer in a different league, his is a case of pure hard work.

"I knew I wasn't the most skilled sportsperson when I came in but the only constant thing has been working on myself. If the Indian team has to be the best in the world, it needs to go about in a certain manner."

"When we came back from Australia in 2012, I saw a gap between us and Australia. I realised if we don't change the way we are playing, training or eating, we can't compete with the best in the world."

"No point in competing if you don't want to be the best. I wanted to be the best version of myself and then based everything around that vision, my approach to the game changed," he said.

The Great Diwali Discount!
Unlock 75% more savings this festive season. Get Moneycontrol Pro for a year for Rs 289 only.
Coupon code: DIWALI. Offer valid till 10th November, 2019 .

Updated Date: Sep 07, 2019 19:46:10 IST

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4659 119
2 New Zealand 2829 109
3 England 4366 104
4 South Africa 3177 102
5 Australia 3270 99
6 Sri Lanka 3795 95
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7071 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
6 Pakistan 5019 98
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7748 277
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4720 262
4 India 8620 261
5 Australia 5471 261
6 New Zealand 4784 252