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Happy Birthday to the Virat Run Factory

Shubham Sharma

Today is another day of celebration for the Youngistan heartbeats and die-hard cricket fans. The 5th day of the month graces the morning with the birthday bash of the Indian cricketer Virat Kohli. The young lad does not require any introduction today. The fighter-dynamic personality is today celebrating his 32nd birthday.

Wishes poured in from all over the world for the Indian skipper.

The moulding of a boy into cricketer

Virat was born and brought up in Delhi by his parents. Being the youngest kid out of the three, the parents always extended their full love and support to him. When he expressed his desire to play cricket to his father, his father supported him. At the age of 9,Kohli became the part or West Delhi Cricket Academy. He began learning his cricket tactics of batting in Rajkumar Sharma's cricket academy in Uttam Nagar. Virat still considers his first coach as his mentor and still goes to his academy whenever he is in Delhi.

In 2002-03, Kohli played in Polly Umrigar Trophy for Delhi at the age of 15. The young boy showcased his best performance and in the next season of the tournament, Kohli played as the captain of the team. In 2004, he was selected for Vijay Merchant Trophy and emerged as the highest run scorer in the same. In 2006, he finally made his debut in List A matches against Services. Unfortunately, he didn't get a chance here to show his amazing batting performance. In July 2006, he was selected for U-19 Indian squad against England. Here Virat performed well and was observed by team coach Lalchand Rajput.

"I want to play"

The 18-year old boy was calmly approaching towards his goal of getting the seat in Indian squad. But, behind every success there is always a hurdle. Same happened with Virat. In the year 2006, he got the news of his father's death. At that time, he was in the dressing room waiting for his turn to bat in Ranji Trophy against Karnataka. The team was about to loose the game, and a follow-on threat was nearing. Here, Virat had 2 options- Either to save the team from field's danger or to move to home for performing his father's last rites. Virat was completely backed by his father for his decision of cricket. The same great man was no more. In such a situation, any individual would definitely proceed to the home at the earliest.

But being a good son, Virat also remembered his father's aspiration who wanted to see his son at the top of this game. When asked by captain Mithun Manhas to go back to home, Virat just replied "I want to play". Seeing the reaction, everybody was shocked. Even when the selectors sitting for selecting the young talent for Indian squad got to know about this, they praised and appreciated him. Virat did not only come on the ground, but saved his team from a massive defeat by scoring 90 runs. After given out, he rushed directly to the cremation ground and performed the last rites of his father.

The run-hunger

After this incident, the 18-year old boy started transforming into a mature man. The man who would now take every match seriously, playing with complete dedication. In rest of the Ranji matches, he scored the highest runs. Be it playing in Sri Lanka in T20 series or Inter-state T-20 series, Kohli proved his worth in every match.

The selectors were looking for a young and fresh face for the very first U-19 T-20 World Cup in 2008. Here, the picked Kohli as the leading man of the team. Kohli along with his boys, performed extraordinarily well without any prior experience and the team won the World Cup. Now, adding a feather to golden cap of Indian Cricket, BCCI selectors took him to probables team for the Champions Trophy and was taken to Brisbane for 6-week training program.

In the same year, he was picked up for the tournament against Sri Lanka and Champions Trophy in Pakistan. Here with an average performance with his debut half ton, he played in South Africa for Board President's 11. 

Since the Indian team in Champions Trophy of 2009 was already adorned with a lot of celebrity players including Sachin, Gambhir, Sehwag, Yuvraj and Raina, it was difficult for Kohli to earn a seat in the batting order. But, Yuvraj unfortunately sustained an injury during the tournament. Here, Kohli was given a chance by the selectors to rise from the dugout. Kohli ticked the decision of selectors correct and smashed 79 runs in the match against West Indies.

From here, Kohli found a position for playing in the team - at number 4. Be it against Sri Lanka and Bangladesh or Zimbabwe as a vice captain, Kohli proved his worth every time.

Kohli also became a pioneer in Indian triumph in 2011 World Cup. After which majority of Indian legends retired, youngsters like Kohli were polished to take up the responsibility of the team soon. He was much guided and supported by the strategic man Dhoni. Kohli proved his worth and today leads the team in all the 3 formats.

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Some unknown facts about the skipper

  • Kohli from heart, is a pure Delhiite. Thus, whenever he is there in his home town, he never forgets to have a plate of Chole Bhature-his favourite street food. 
  • Kohli is well known for transforming his weakness into strength. When he was initially criticised for his aggression on the field, he used this aggression while his game turning it in his favour.
  • Apart from cricket, Kohli is a great fan of football and Tennis. Today, he is the owner of team FC Goa in ISL and UAE Royals in ITPL. Last year, he was also seen taking tennis tips from Rafel Nadal during Wimbledon.
  • Virat is fondly called as Cheeku by his peers and family members. He got this name from his former coach Ajeet Choudhary.
  • He is the first Indian to score a century in his debut match. 
  • Virat holds a plethora of awards in his badge. This includes Arjuna Award, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna and Padmashri. 
  • He is the only player included in Wisden's team of the year for consecutively 3 years.
  • His favourite food includes Mutton Biryani and Kheer.
  • Kohli met his soulmate Anushka Sharma on the sets of an advertisement shoot in 2013. Both tied the knot in 2017.
  • Today, Kohli holds the record of fastest 2000,5000 and 7000 runs in International cricket. These includes a total of 70 centuries- 43 in ODIs and 27 in tests.
  • Kohli initiated playing for his current IPL team RCB in 2008 as a player. Today, he holds the captaincy of the team.
  •  Kohli is often seen working and collaborating for social causes. His IPL team RCB wears green jersey in several matches to showcase the need of environment conservation. For this,he turned completely vegan in 2018. Recently, his team wore the jerseys with the names of Corona Warriors printed on them.
  • His favourite playing destination is New Zealand.
  • He likes History the most as an academic subject.

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