Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) batsman AB de Villiers paid rich tribute to his captain and teammate Virat Kohli after RCB’s loss to KKR in the eliminator match of IPL 2021, which ended Kohli’s captaincy tenure with the franchise after 9 years.
Kohli had taken over as RCB captain from Daniel Vettori in 2013 and led the team to the finals in IPL 2016. But he ends his reign as captain after leading RCB in 140 matches but without a single IPL trophy to his name.
De Villiers, who is a close friend of Kohli and partner in crime in many memorable partnerships with the India captain, paid tribute to Kohli in a video posted by RCB.
"I have been here through all the years with Virat as captain and I think the word that comes to mind is 'grateful'. We were very lucky to have had you at the front. The way you captained this team has inspired everyone, certainly inspired me to become better as a player and a person. You have had a much bigger impact than you will ever understand, it has gone miles. There are stories that you don't even hear of people's lives that you have touched,” De Villiers said.
"I have known you on the field but away from it as well. You make people believe in themselves, which is much more important than winning a trophy. Which I still believe will come your way," he added.
Kohli was seen in an altercation with on-field umpire Virender Sharma during the eliminator match and De Villiers pulled his leg over the incident saying, “You have done a great job, but that book is not finished yet. Whatever you have done for us, we won't forget it. Thanks for all the memories, and I think some of the umpires will sleep a bit better, very happy for them.”