Melbourne: West Indies legend Vivian Richards has backed and lauded Indian Test captain Virat Kohli for his aggressive on-field attitude which has frustrated Australian cricketers during the ongoing four-match Test series.
Despite India trailing the series 0-2 after the first three Tests, Kohli is the second highest run-maker of the series with 499 runs from six innings which includes three centuries with a staggering average of 83.16.
“I love that man. People have got to understand that this game has changed quite a bit. Regardless of how good you are, you’re going to have guys coming at you. You’re going to have stuff being said," Richards was quoted as saying by Melbourne-based radio station 3AW.
Virat Kohli exchanges words with Australia pacer Mitchell Johnson on Day Three of the third Test in Melbourne. PIC/Getty Images
"But as long as it’s said in the best of manners, I don’t think it’s going to be too disruptive to that particular individual. When you have that sort of stuff, to me it always brings the best out of any individual. If you are up with your game and ahead of your game, for some reason you can respond."
Kohli has had verbal duels with the likes of pacer Mitchell Johnson, vice-captain Brad Haddin and all-rounder Shane Watson. However, Richards lent support to the Delhi boy saying that Kohli is a "little bull-terrier".
Sir Vivian Richards
“Some of the past Indian teams would’ve crumbled with some of the stuff that’s been said. But Virat Kohli is one of those modern-day players who’s a little bull-terrier in his own right," Richards said.
"If you look at the scores he’s amassed, it shows you he enjoys the contest. To come out smelling sweet at the end of it, it’s a good feeling,” added Richards.