Virat Kohli has been named as the ODI cricketer for the 2010s decade in the latest, the 2021 edition of the Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack. One cricketer has been named for each of the decades from 1971 to 2021, with the India captain taking the honours for the 2010s.
Virat Kohli, after leading the under-19 team to the title, made his ODI debut in 2008. In the past decade, in ODI cricket, the right-hander has been head and shoulders above the rest in terms of consistency, and longevity.
During the concerned period, nobody has scored more runs than Virat Kohli’s 11556; no batter has notched up more hundreds (42) and more fifties (52) than ‘King Kohli’; he has played most matches (227); and, for players with over 4000 runs in that stretch, only AB de Villiers has a better average of 64.20 than Virat Kohli’s 60.79, but in almost 100 fewer innings.
He hit his maiden World Cup hundred in his debut game in 2011 and helped India win the trophy. Virat Kohli top-scored in the 2013 Champions Trophy final against England dragging the side to a defendable total. In the next two World Cups, he had major contributions with the bat for India reaching the semi-final.
He has cemented his name as arguably the greatest run-chaser in the game with over 6000 runs batting second at 69.08; that average catapults to 95.64 in victories while chasing. In a nutshell, the Delhi-born lad has ruled the world of cricket in the past decade. He has been a well-oiled run-machine.
Other ODI decade award winners in 2021 Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack
Legendary Sri Lankan spinner, Muttiah Muralitharan was named the ODI Cricketer of the 2000s with 335 wickets in the decade, more than any other bowler has in a single decade.
Maestro Indian batsman, Sachin Tendulkar was named the ODI Cricketer of the 1990s. He scored over 8000 runs during that period, including a freakish 1998 where he smashed 9 ODI hundreds, more than any other batsman in a single calendar year ever has.
The 1983 World Cup-winning skipper, Kapil Dev, is the award winner for the 1980s and West Indian batsman Viv Richards takes the award for the 1970s, the first decade of ODI cricket.