Virat needs to pay me for running his runs: Dhoni


Mohali, March 29: India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni hailed yet another masterclass knock of Virat Kohli, saying that the combination of his inherent aggression and gradually developed calmness is working wonders for the 27-year-old star.

Batting at the other end, Dhoni had the best seat in the house as Kohli single-handedly powered India into the ICC World T20 semi-finals with an unbeaten 82 off 51 balls against Australia in a must-win group match on Sunday night.

“It was an incredible innings. Especially the fact that the wicket was not easy to bat on, it was difficult to hit back of a length deliveries. The good thing is that they didn’t bowl too many spinners. He (Kohli) had a partnership with Yuvi (Yuvraj Singh), who twisted his ankle and they could not convert those one and a half runs into twos. It was tremendous batting effort by him, super batting. Especially the areas you want to score runs, there also he was very good and so was his running between the wickets,” said Dhoni.

Kohli scored the bulk of the runs in the unbeaten 67 runs stand off 31 balls with Dhoni, showing exemplary temperament in trying circumstances to get his team over the line.

Asked how difficult it is to bat like Kohli did when the crowd gets completely into the game, Dhoni said the innings spoke volumes about the right-hander’s character.

“You are in the best position to enjoy. When everyone is having fun, celebrating the success, you want to click a picture of it in the mind. You won’t really repeat it. You would obviously celebrate it in the dressing room, it is a team sport after all. It is a responsibility that the individual takes and gives you more chance to prove yourself for the team and country. It is a good thing to have and where it has also helped him, that when the game goes into the last over, a lot of things pop into your head,” Dhoni said.

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“When you are calm it helps you take the right decision. It is a good quality to be calm but at the same time, he will always be an aggressive cricketer ready to take on challenges.”

“That is what I think is great. He is heading in the right direction and he should not lose his own character (aggression), that is what his strength is. He is batting amazingly well. He is fit, he he can field anywhere and at same time he runs hard,” said the skipper.


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