Having given Virat Kohli his first break in international cricket in 2008, the Chairman of the National Selection Committee Dilip Vengsarkar has seen the meteoric rise of Kohli's game from very close quarters.
“I saw [Kohli] score 120 not out (as an opener) against New Zealand in the Emerging Players Tournament in Australia in July 2008. I thought he was always exceptionally talented. We picked him soon for the one-day series in Sri Lanka. After making a good impression initially, he seemed to have lost his way. But after that phase, he has worked very hard on his fitness and game. He’s extremely focused now as player and captain,” said Vengsarkar. The big breakthrough was made full use of; Kohli is all set to receive the Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy (ICC Cricketer of the Year award) and has also been named the ODI player of the year".
Since then Kohli has scored more than 50 international hundreds and has brought many accolades for the country. He was then made the captain of the Indian ODI team in 2016, just after MS Dhoni decided to step down after the World T20.
“I have not seen any other cricketer, in the last 10 years, who has made a such an impact across all formats of the game. He takes tremendous pride in his performance, leads by example, sets high standards, maintains fitness and wants others to follow him,” Vengsarkar went on to add.
Kohli's attitude in the recently concluded Test series and his celebrations particularly during the Johannesburg Test match was also seen very closely by former West Indian great Michael Holding. Holding even compared Kohli with Viv Richards in terms of his attitude towards the sport.