Virat Kohli already a legend: Zaheer Abbas

Virat Kohli already a legend: Zaheer Abbas

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LONDON: Zaheer Abbas has a home in London and he was preparing to come to Lord’s on Thursday to watch India take on England, but it started raining. “I was about to get out and come to the ground, but you know how this London weather is,” Zaheer told TOI, a little disappointed with the way things shaped up over the day.

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The Pakistani stylist got all excited when Virat Kohli’s name was mentioned. “I have seen a lot of great Indian players and he is right up there. I don’t like comparing generations, because each era has its own demands, but Kohli is as good as anybody else,” Zaheer said.

Zed, as he is popularly known, was the first Asian to complete a 100 first-class hundreds. He sees a similar hunger that characterizes Kohli’s batting. “For me, a legend is one who dominates his own generation and Kohli is doing that with a degree of ease. That makes him already a legend,” Zaheer said in praise of the Indian captain. It is the sense of authority in Kohli’s game that has impressed Zaheer, who has 5062 Test and 2572 ODI runs.

“Kohli plays with a lot of authority on both sides of the wicket, giving you the impression that he is a class player. His feet movement is extremely assured and there’s an element of fearlessness in his game which I really admire,” Zaheer said.

Kohli’s innings at Edgbaston was quite a treat and Zaheer feels there is no reason why he can’t repeat that performance in the remaining Tests. “He showed that he can be good in English conditions and I am expecting good things from him,” the Pakistan great added.

It wasn’t too long back that Pakistan were here in England and the series ended 1-1. In fact Pakistan have always done well in this part of the world, while India have struggled more often than not. “You know it’s always about the Pakistan bowling. They always had a great attack and even now, the pace attack is quite potent. India, on the other hand, always used to be about their batting and it continues to be so. That’s one of the reasons why so many India-Pakistan games used to end in draws, because your batting line-up and our bowling line-up used to cancel each other out,” Zaheer said.

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