Virat Kohli has always been lauded for his batting skills and his passion for the game, which is second to none. New India coach Anil Kumble worked closely with the Test skipper in the tour of West Indies, which was the former leggie's first assignment as the national team's gaffer. He praised Kohli for his show in Caribbean, and wants him to carry his aggression and intensity in the future as well.
India looked a solid team under the new combination of Kumble and Kohli in the Test series against West Indies. They won the four-match Test series 2-0. India were easily the better team in the Caribbean, and Kohli's side could have won the second Test as well had the rain not aided the home team.
"His (Kohli) intensity and aggression is something that I would like to ask him to continue. He was brilliant on the tour. Obviously we were disappointed after the Jamaica Test match, we lost out on time and also we felt that we were in a great position to win the Test match," Times of India quoted Kumble as saying.
The right-hander has been one of the most consistent players for India, scoring runs all over the world across all formats. Kohli also scored his first double ton in the first Test against West Indies, which helped India win the match with ease.
One has seen Kohli performing with the bat on the field, but Kumble opened up the Delhi batsman's preparations ahead of the game. The coach lauded the player for his work ethics.
"I have not seen anyone this professional in terms of looking after his fitness, preparations and work ethic. He probably realized that to be a part of the international setup and to perform consistently, one needs to be like that, and he has done that. We can see all the good and hard work that he has put in has shown on the field. It clearly shows that he wants to be the best and he leads from the front," Kumble said.
Besides Kohli, Kumble also had some good things to say about Ravichandran Ashwin, who won man of the series award for his all-round performance.
The off-spinner managed to take 17 wickets in the series with his brilliant bowling, but it was his batting, which caught the eye. Ashwin scored two centuries in the Test series, justifying management's decision to promote him up the order to number six.
"Ashwin has always shown what he is capable of. In the West Indies, there was a conscious decision from the management to push him up the (batting) order. The thinking was that with him batting at No. 6, especially when we played five bowlers, Saha gets relieved of feeling the pressure that he is the last recognized batsman," Kumble said.
"Ashwin has shown he is capable of batting higher up in Test cricket. Credit to him, he grabbed it by scoring two hundreds in the Test matches. He is a fantastic allrounder."