RCB vs CSK: "He is still trying to improve" - Irfan Pathan's big remark as Virat Kohli faces criticism over strike-rate

Updated - 13 May 2024, 04:26 PM

Irfan Pathan, Virat Kohli
Irfan Pathan, Virat Kohli [PC: X]

Virat Kohli's strike rate has been a major point of discussion in the Indian cricket fraternity for quite some time now. While the former India skipper has continued to score heavily across formats, he has faced criticism from several quarters for not being aggressive enough with the bat.

Even in the ODI World Cup last year when he scored a record 765 runs, there were many who criticised him for his strike rate which was 90.31. The batting superstar's strike rate became the talk of the town again in the ongoing Indian Premier 2024 although he had a very prolific start with the bat. 

The criticism reached such a level that Virat Kohli himself decided to hit back at the critics. After scoring a quickfire unbeaten half-century against Gujarat Titans, he had said: "All the people who talk about strike rates and me not playing spin well are the ones who love talking about this stuff. But for me, it’s about winning the game for the team."

"There’s a reason why you do it for 15 years. You’ve done it day in and day out and won games for your team. I am not quite sure if you have not been in that situation yourself, to sit and speak about the game from the box, I don’t think that’s the same thing" he had added.

Irfan Pathan praises Virat Kohli:

As Virat Kohli's strike rate continues to be a major talking point in the Indian cricket fraternity, former India pacer Irfan Pathan has heaped praise on the batting star for his willingness to improve his game even after achieving so much.

Virat Kohli recently revealed that he has been working on slog sweep in order to take the attack to the spinners in the middle overs. 

"This is why I feel he is one of the greatest players in the world. After all these years, he is still trying to improve himself. He never played the sweep shot. People then started criticising him, saying that since he doesn't play the sweep shot, spinners have the edge when they attack the stumps or the pad.

"So what Kohli did, was he went a step ahead to play the slog sweep and the normal sweep and improved his strike rate," Irfan Pathan told Star Sports.

In a video recently posted by IPL on social media, Kohli spoke about his attitude, saying that he is always open to working on his game's improvement. He opened up on how he constantly tries to improve his game when he trains in the nets.

"I’m certainly not the guy who wants to sit around saying this is the way I play and not improve on the things I need to. For me it’s still quality over quantity that’s something I’ve tried to replicate in every practice session that I go through.

"And some challenges such as improving your own game since it’s an ever-evolving process. Brought out the slog sweep to the spinners, something that I just mentally fit myself in that situation," said Kohli.

Kohli has been in sensational form in IPL 2024. He is currently the leading run-scorer in the competition. In 13 games so far, he has scored 661 runs with the help of one century and five half-centuries. He has an average of 55 and a strike rate of 155 this season.

 

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Virat Kohli Irfan Pathan IPL 2024