Pakistan’s cricket skipper Babar Azam has expressed his sheer joy at receiving accolades from India’s cricket sensation, Virat Kohli, and emphasized the strong bond of mutual respect that underpins their relationship. Kohli’s appreciative remarks about Babar Azam were shared during a conversation with Star Sports last year, where he fondly recalled their initial meeting.
Kohli’s admiration for Babar Azam’s cricketing prowess and his unwavering respect for him were unmistakable in his comments. He remarked, “I’ve noticed tremendous admiration and respect from him right from day one, and that remains unchanged. Irrespective of the fact that he is arguably the best batsman in the world across formats, consistently performing at such a high level. His talent is exceptional, and I’ve always relished watching him play. So, his attitude and approach haven’t changed now that he’s performing even better and coming into his own. I don’t anticipate any alteration in his demeanor towards me.”
In response to Kohli’s kind words, Babar Azam shared his feelings and delved into the impact of Virat’s endorsement on his confidence. He articulated, “It’s an incredibly uplifting feeling. To have someone speak about you in such terms is truly heartening. Virat’s remarks have filled me with immense pride and happiness. Such commendation bolsters your confidence. When I met him in 2019, he was at the pinnacle of his form. And he continues to excel. I aimed to glean insights from his game. I learned so much from him. He patiently answered all my queries in great detail. This guidance proved invaluable. When mutual respect translates into such gestures, it’s an overwhelmingly positive sentiment.”
Both Babar Azam and Virat Kohli have significantly contributed to the ODI format throughout their careers. Babar, who recently delivered a match-winning innings of 151 against Nepal, boasts an impressive ODI average of 59.47, amassing a total of 5353 runs. He boasts an impressive 19 ODI centuries, ranking second for Pakistan in this format. In contrast, Virat has amassed a staggering 12898 runs at an astounding average of 57.32, securing an impressive 46 ODI centuries, which places him second in the format’s all-time history.
Virat Kohli’s fondness for ODI cricket also found mention during his discussion with Star Sports. He underscored the comprehensive challenges that ODI cricket presents, encompassing technique and adaptability to varying game situations. Kohli shared, “I absolutely cherish playing ODI cricket. In my opinion, ODI cricket is the format that thoroughly assesses your skills. It scrutinizes your technique, your temperament, your ability to navigate diverse scenarios, and your capacity to adapt in different phases of the game. This format truly tests your prowess as a batsman. And this is why I believe ODI cricket consistently brings out the best in me. I relish embracing these challenges and tailoring my approach to contribute effectively to my team’s triumph.”
With the much-awaited India-Pakistan clash in the Asia Cup 2023 on the horizon, cricket enthusiasts in India are eagerly anticipating a riveting showdown. Virat Kohli acknowledged the formidable bowling lineup of Pakistan, featuring Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf, Naseem Shah, and Shadab Khan. He acknowledged Pakistan’s prowess in the bowling department and underscored the necessity to be at one’s peak while confronting them, given their skillset’s ability to significantly influence the game’s dynamics.