31st Birthday Wishes to Indian Cricket Captain

Virat Kohli : (Born 5 November 1988) is an Indian cricketer who currently captains the India national team. A right-handed top-order batsman, Kohli is regarded as one of the best batsmen in the world. He plays for Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Indian Premier League (IPL), and has been the team’s captain since 2013. Since October 2017, he has been the top-ranked ODI batsman in the world and is currently 2nd in Test rankings. Among Indian batsmen, Kohli has the best ever Test rating (937 points), ODI rating (911 points) and T20I rating (897 points).

EARLY LIFE

Virat Kohli was born on 5 November 1988 in Delhi into a Punjabi family. His father, Prem Kohli, worked as a criminal lawyer and his mother, Saroj Kohli, is a housewife. He has an older brother, Vikas, and an older sister, Bhavna. According to his family, when he was three-years old, Kohli would pick up a cricket bat, start swinging it and ask his father to bowl at him.

Kohli was raised in Uttam Nagar and started his schooling at Vishal Bharti Public School. In 1998, the West Delhi Cricket Academy was created, and Kohli, a nine-year-old, was part of its first intake. Kohli’s father took him to the academy after their neighbours suggested that “Virat shouldn’t waste his time in gully cricket and instead join a professional club”. Kohli trained at the academy under Rajkumar Sharma and also played matches at the Sumeet Dogra Academy at Vasundhara Enclave at the same time. Sharma recounts Kohli’s early days at his academy, “He oozed talent. It was so difficult to keep him quiet. He was a natural in whatever he did and I was most impressed with his attitude. He was ready to bat at any spot, and I had to literally push him home after the training sessions. He just wouldn’t leave.” In ninth grade, he shifted to Saviour Convent in Paschim Vihar to help his cricket practice. Apart from sports, Kohli was good at academics as well, and his teachers remember him as “a bright and alert child”. Kohli’s family lived in Meera Bagh until 2015 when they moved to Gurgaon.

Kohli’s father died on 18 December 2006 due to a stroke after being bed-ridden for a month. Regarding his early life, Kohli has said in an interview, “I’ve seen a lot in life. Losing my father at a young age, the family business not doing too well, staying in a rented place. There were tough times for the family… It’s all embedded in my memory.” According to Kohli, his father supported his cricket training during his childhood, “My father was my biggest support. He was the one who drove me to practice every day. I miss his presence sometimes.”

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