Sourav Ganguly Gives Short But Epic Reply To Shoaib Akhtar's 'Retirement' Suggestion For Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli will turn 35 years old this November but he is still among the fittest cricketers going around in the world.
India's star cricketer Virat Kohli attracts many opinions. There is always someone, a fan or a former cricketer, advising him on something. Recently former Pakistan cricketer Shoaib Akhtar gave a suggestion to Kohli to retire from white-ball cricket after playing the ICC Men's ODI World Cup 2023. Akhtar believes that with Kohli not being considered anymore for the T20Is and him turning 35 this year, time has come for him to shift entire focus on Test cricket.
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Akhtar believes that Kohli should look to go past Tendulkar's tally of 100 international centuries and he can do that by extending his career. "I don't think he should play more 50-overs matches after this World Cup. Also, if you see him in T20s, it takes a lot out of him. I think he should play for at least six more years and break the 100 hundreds record of Sachin Tendulkar. Kohli has it in him to break the record. He should focus on Test cricket after this World Cup, and break this record," Akhtar said on the show 'Backstage with Boria' on Thursday.
Former India captain Sourav Ganguly, who took Men In Blue to final of 2003 World Cup, gave a mouth-shutting reply to Akhtar after his 'retirement' suggestion to Kohli. Speaking at an event in Kolkata, Ganguly was told about Akhtar's suggestion and he had a short but crisp reply. Ganguly said, "Why? Virat Kohli should play whatever cricket he wants to play. Because he performs."
It is also true that Kohli's form in Test cricket has dipped in last three years. Kohli, in fact, has just two Test hundred since November 2019. His Test average has also come down to 49.3, below the 50 mark. As far as crossing Tendulkar's record of 100 hundreds is concerned, Kohli is still very far from the landmark. Kohli has 29 Test tons, 46 ODI centuries and one in T20Is. In total, he has 76 centuries, still 24 away from Tendulkar's 100.
Kohli, in his current physical state, still has it in him to play another World Cup. He will be 38 or 39 by the time the next ODI World Cup comes. If Kohli wants to score te 100 hundreds, he will need to play both the formats. But knowing the new Kohli mindset, he may not be taking too much stress about milestones currently.