Former India Virat Kohli showed glimpses of his old form in the four-day warm-up game against Leicestershire on Thursday as he drove the ball beautifully through the covers and even hit a stunning pull shot of Prasidh Krishna for a six. The man who hasn't scored a hundred in more than 100 matches across formats was patient and left numerous deliveries outside his off-stump before being dismissed by Roman Walker for 33. Virat Kohli smashed four boundaries and a maximum in his entertaining knock during his stay in the middle. However, it wasn't the Delhi-born batter's batting that caught everyone's attention. Instead, Virat Kohli's attempt to recreate Joe Root's “magic bat balance” trick which instantly went viral on various social media platforms. Interestingly, the former England captain Joe Root had successfully balanced the bat upright without any kind of support in a recent Test against New Zealand.
Virat Kohli, however, wasn't able to replicate Joe Root's act who had somehow managed to get his bat to stand upright for a while.
— 🏏Flashscore Cricket Commentators (@FlashCric) June 23, 2022
Joe Root's magic bat trick which Virat Kohli trying #INDvsENG
— Boring Trader Mr. 360' (@BoringTrader360) June 23, 2022
Nevertheless, fans on Twitter went crazy – while some slammed Virat Kohli for trying to copy Joe Root, others were appreciative of his effort.
Joe Root > Virat Kohli. Just a simple fact on this Thursday afternoon. https://t.co/lubhWHZiJq
— James (@JLM_1903) June 23, 2022
Virat Kohli trying to be Joe Root !
Honor for kohli but sadly failed pic.twitter.com/PE0SZAh0FN
— Deepak Ostwal (@medeepakostwal) June 23, 2022
He ain't got tht sauce like root mate
— PotentEvil (@yewfellofff) June 23, 2022
bas aise hi centuries bhi copy kar lo
— retired ICT fan (@anubhav__tweets) June 23, 2022
Kohli to Root after this: pic.twitter.com/W3PWFkKURq
— Souvik Roy (@souvikroy_SRT) June 23, 2022
Earlier his childhood coach Rajkumar Sharma broke his silence on Virat Kohli's woeful run with the bat and backed him to come good in the upcoming fifth Test against England at Edgbaston.
Rajkumar Sharma also spoke about the former India skipper's rivalry with Joe Root who has been in sensational form of late.
In contrast to Virat Kohli, who hasn’t made a hundred in 31 months, Joe Root has been scoring centuries for fun since January 2021. In the last year and a half, Joe Root has struck 10 Test hundreds to put himself at par with his great contemporaries Virat Kohli and Steve Smith. All three superstars now have 27 tons in the longest format.
In the ongoing three-Test series against the Kiwis, Joe Root has made 305 runs at an exceptional average of 101.67. He has also scored back-to-back hundreds in the first two matches, hitting a match-winning unbeaten 115 at Lord's before following it up with a delightful 176 at Trent Bridge in the next game.
“Both are fantastic players. A healthy rivalry is always there at the back of the mind, that he has come close to you or has gone ahead of you, or you are close to the other person’s record. You definitely think about it while sitting in the hotel or the dressing room,” Rajkumar Sharma told India News.
“You forget this rivalry when you go across the boundary line, then you only wait for the next ball and you have to see how to score your runs. You don't get Joe Root or anyone else in your mind.”
“But currently it is required for Virat to play his natural game and make a big score, which he is searching for for a long time. I have full hope that he will do that soon because it has been a long time,” Rajkumar Sharma added.
“It has not been seen often in Virat's entire career that he has such a long lean patch, in terms of triple figures, he has definitely scored runs otherwise, but his conversion rate was exceptional earlier, once he used to reach 30-35 runs, everyone used to believe that he will score big, a hundred will definitely be scored but lately that has not happened,” he concluded.
Earlier, the legendary Kapil Dev had found “some fault” in the 33-year-old star batter’s batting technique.
“I haven’t played cricket as much as Virat Kohli. But sometimes you may not have played enough cricket but you can look to figure things out. Either that, or we just cannot criticise such great players. We have played cricket and we understand the game and after that, they have to improve their thought process, not ours. If you prove us wrong, we will like it. If you don’t score runs, we feel there is some fault. We just see one thing and that’s your performance. And if the performance is not there, don’t expect people to stay quiet. Your bat and your performance should speak, nothing else,” Kapil Dev said on the YouTube channel Uncut.
“It pains me to see such a big player go through this a long gap (with regards to a century). He is like a hero to us. We never thought we would witness a player whom we can compare to Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, Sunil Gavaskar, Virender Sehwag. But then they came, and forced us to compare and now since he hasn’t for the last two years, it is bothering me and all of us,” Kapil Dev pointed out.