Home Sports As T20 World Cup Nears, BCCI Chief Selector Ajit Agarkar Says If Virat Kohli “Puts Forward Certain…”

As T20 World Cup Nears, BCCI Chief Selector Ajit Agarkar Says If Virat Kohli “Puts Forward Certain…”

As T20 World Cup Nears, BCCI Chief Selector Ajit Agarkar Says If Virat Kohli “Puts Forward Certain…”


The fitness blueprint designed by Virat Kohli has had a ripple effect on the whole Indian cricketing ecosystem, said chairman of selectors Ajit Agarkar, who has called MS Dhoni a pure instinct man of a sport that had embraced the use of data and insight long ago. Kohli might be 35 years old but he remains second to none when it comes to performing the most difficult fitness drills. “You look at guys like Virat (Kohli), he is one of those guys who set the benchmark. 10-15 years into his career, he has only got fitter, you can see the results. If someone like him sets an example and puts forward certain things that you need or certain fitness levels that you need, gradually it progresses across the ecosystem.

“Gradually it has progressed (to the younger generation). The one difference you have seen over the last 15-20 years or so is the fitness levels of players,” said Agarkar on SportifywithPRG.

Kohli has been in sublime form in the ongoing edition of the IPL, smashing a record-extending eighth century in the tournament over the years, while also leading the run charts with 316 from five games so far.

Dhoni’s instincts have seen him win five coveted IPL titles, and though he has relinquished the position of skipper at Chennai Super Kings, his presence on the field is enough to infuse loads of confidence in his side.

The former India cricketer felt that artificial intelligence cannot be a substitute to someone like Dhoni whose captaincy instincts are incredible.

“The amount of data that’s available, is incredible. You can plan a whole innings and I think everybody does it now, but it doesn’t mean it will work all the time. You need a captain on the ground because not everything that you’ve planned is going to go your way.

“On a particular day it might, but most days it won’t. And that’s where you need human instinct. That’s why you call MS Dhoni a great captain because he had a feel for the game. He knew what was happening and how the game was changing,” opined the 46-year-old former India pace bowler.

Agarkar said that the IPL had become a huge platform to spot talent but what mattered most was a strong temperament, which would set them apart from the rest.

“You can see it, (IPL) keeps throwing up players out of the blue. Having been a selector for a few months, there are certain players who suddenly come and show even on the big stage. IPL is a fairly big stage because of the pressures involved, big crowds.

“You might be bowling to the top batters in the world, or you might be facing one of the top bowlers in the world, and that’s when you stand up and that’s where you judge the temperament of a player, whether he can do it consistently,” said Agarkar.

“It’s sometimes a difficult task because of the sheer numbers (of players coming through the domestic structure) that we have. But, eventually, the more you watch players and temperament sometimes separates it.”

Agarkar believes a tight-knit side will, more often than not, be a winning side.

“A tight-knit group generally helps. You don’t need to be the best friends but you want to enjoy each others’ success. If that doesn’t happen sometimes it is a bit difficult.”

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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