Team India head coach Rahul Dravid on Friday felicitated former India skipper Virat Kohli as the 33-year-old reached the 100th Test landmark in Mohali. Kohli became the twelfth Indian cricketer to have achieved the feat, joining an elite list of batters to have reached the figure that includes Dravid himself, alongside legends like Sunil Gavaskar, Dilip Vengsarkar, Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, VVS Laxman, and Virender Sehwag.
Kohli had stepped down as India’s Test captain in January after seven years in charge during which he led the team to the top of the test rankings and reached the final of the inaugural World Test Championship last year.
Under the Indian batter’s leadership, the side ended a 71-year drought in Australia when they sealed a maiden series victory in 2019 and they led 2-1 in a series in England last year before the final test was postponed.
Watch as Dravid felicitated the Kohli:
“It’s well deserved, it’s well earned, and as we say in the dressing room, double it up,” Dravid told Kohli as he honoured him with the 100th Test cap.
Upon receiving the cap, Kohli, accompanied by wife Anushka Sharma, thanked his family, friends, teammates and childhood coach and also had a message for the upcoming generation.
“Thanks Rahul bhai, it is indeed a special moment for me. My wife is here, my brother is here in the stadium. All my family members, my coach from childhood, all are very proud. To all my teammates, thank you so much for your support over the years. It is indeed a team game and this journey couldn’t have been possible without all of you. To the BCCI to give me the opportunity to represent Indian cricket and from thereon, everything has gone from strength to strength,” Kohli said after receiving the cap from Dravid.
“The only thing I would say is in this day and age, with the amount of cricket we play – the three formats and the IPL, the only takeaway the next generation can take from my Test career is that I was able to strive through and play the purest format of the game and get to 100 Tests which is something I’m proud of.
“I couldn’t have received it from a better person (Rahul Dravid), one of my childhood heroes. I still have the picture in my house from my U-15 NCA days, when I was looking at you while getting a picture with you! Today, I get my 100th Test cap from you, so indeed it has been a great journey and one that continues to grow hopefully.”
Kohli took over as captain from MS Dhoni in 2014 and he won 40 of 68 tests — more than any other Indian skipper.
“I clearly remember when I took over test captaincy, I had this vision… that we needed to play certain kind of cricket and we need to be a certain kind of team in international cricket and we ended up achieving that five years in a row,” Kohli had said in an interview posted by the BCCI on Thursday.
“So immensely proud. Just the atmosphere was something magical to be a part of — you entered the dressing room and you felt that you could win anywhere and that feeling was so empowering.”
Earlier in the Mohali Test, India had won the toss and opted to bat against Sri Lanka at the PCA Stadium. India have opted to take the field with three spinners (Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, and Jayant Yadav) and two pacers (Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami). While Hanuma Vihari was slotted at no.3, Shreyas Iyer will bat at the fifth spot.