Their rivalry has been talked up quite a lot with people taking keen interest in trying to find out who is better instead of enjoying the legend of both. But for Aussie great Steve Smith, there are absolutely no hard feelings for Indian captain Virat Kohli, who he reckons is an incredible player, with his genius not limited to any particular format or a set of conditions.
This, after Kohli made a wonderful statement at the last year's World Cup in UK where during the India-Australia encounter at the Oval he saved Smith from the section of the crowd that was booing him for the contentious ball-tampering saga and urged them to clap for the man.
"Yeah, he is terrific. His batting numbers just speak for themselves. I think he's an incredible player in all three formats and I think we will see him break many records," Smith told IANS after the recent ODI series that ended with India edging past Australia 2-1.
"He's already broken plenty of them and I see him breaking many more over the years. He has got the hunger for runs and doesn't stop getting them. Hopefully, he can stop getting them against Australia, that'll be nice."
"As a captain, he's already made India the number one side in the world in Test cricket. From what I have seen he sets really good standards for them. He is a lot about fitness and is health-conscious and things like that. He's got the Indian side into a really good place and leads them exceptionally well," he added.
Kohli won the ICC "spirit of cricket" award for that moment in London. "In the World Cup, it was really nice of Virat to do what he did," Smith said. "He did not have to do that and yeah it was a lovely gesture and really appreciated that."
Meanwhile, Smith also became the latest big name from world cricket to oppose the idea of four-day Test cricket. "I am comfortable with five days," he said. "I like the challenge of a five-day Test match. Obviously, there has been a lot of talk about the four-day Tests, but my personal opinion is I like five days."
"I don't make the decisions obviously of how it all works out but my opinion is five-days Tests is what it is all about."
(Inputs from IANS)