Virat Kohli open to helping Sri Lanka after the tour

Sabyasachi Chowdhury

Virat Kohli

What’s the story?

Virat Kohli has been a wholehearted cricketer over the course of his illustrious career. This time round, the Indian skipper has come forward and has proposed to discuss issues of the Sri Lankan team with their coach Nic Pothas. In a press conference ahead of the second One Day International at Kandy, Kohli has mentioned about how he will be taking the initiative forward.

"We haven't had any discussions yet. Those things may happen after the competitive zone is over and done with the series. I think that will happen after September 6 if it has to happen from their end, but look it is difficult for any team going through the transition. One thing that we decided to do as a team was take more responsibility and ownership of what we do on the field when playing for the country. We just needed to change our mindset," the right-handed batsman said.

Virat Kohli has also highlighted the prominence of wearing a competitive attitude on the field of play. “It didn't matter if we were playing against a side that has played 60 Tests each if we are mentally more prepared than them then we are in a better position to win. So we decided to put our heads in that zone where experience didn't matter much for us. It was the fight and competitiveness we were willing to show and the desire to fight for longer periods that helped us get through that phase quicker than what others might have faced," he added.

In case you didn’t know…

India have won the first One Day International in Dambulla by a comprehensive margin of nine wickets. Shikhar Dhawan’s breathtaking knock of 132 runs in 90 balls and Virat Kohli’s 44th ODI half-century annihilated the Sri Lankan team into submitting tamely. 

The details

During the interview, Kohli has also stressed on the fact that extreme reactions of fans are beyond the control of cricketers. He has also said that the players try their hearts out during every game and don’t approach the sport with a negative mindset.

What’s next?

The second match of the One Day International series will be played today in Palekelle, which is also the host of the third ODI. Thereafter, the series will move to Colombo, which will host the final couple of ODIs and the one-off T20 International. 

Author’s take

The Sri Lankan team has recently gone through a rough phase as the sub-continent nation has struggled to put up decent performances at the international level. They previously had lost to Zimbabwe in an ODI series at home and are now on the verge of another series-drubbing against India.

Kohli has been an experienced campaigner at the international arena. Quite expectantly, his inputs will be a great value addition for the Sri Lankan team. Nevertheless, it will be a pity if the Lankans don't ensure direct qualification into the World Cup.