Aakash Chopra: Virat Kohli's presence doesn't instil the same fear in bowlers' minds



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Aakash Chopra: Virat Kohli's presence doesn't instil the same fear in bowlers' minds

Virat Kohli will be a part of the team for the Asia Cup 2022. Most believe that Kohli is not the same player as he used to be, and that the fear factor no longer exists in the opponent. Former India opener Aakash Chopra is of the same opinion "There's no doubt in anyone's mind about Virat Kohli's class and his skills, and even if he doesn't score another run in international cricket from here on, he will still be regarded as one of the greatest to have played the game.

A man who did superhuman things and mastered all three formats like almost no others," Aakash Chopra wrote in his column for ESPNCricinfo. "Still, there's also no hiding from the fact that the bat that worked like a magic wand isn't obeying his commands anymore.

There are more misses than hits. The aura of invincibility has faded and his presence doesn't instil the same fear in bowlers' minds as it used to earlier," he said.
Chopra believes that constant breaks during the season lead to bad form of the players.

"For the longest time, the only way to get back into form for a top player was to play as much cricket as possible, even if it meant playing at a slightly lower level. Everyone went through that drill till about a decade ago.

But nowadays, poor form is followed by breaks from the game. I'm not an expert and won't pretend to be one but we really don't know whether that's the best approach towards regaining form and/or confidence.

Times have changed and ways of dealing with issues like this might have changed too," Chopra added.

Virat Kohli and his approach

Virat Kohli has changed his approach many times. "The second thing that changed with Kohli - and it only happened after he had not scored enough for a while - was his approach to starting new innings.

The foundation of Kohli's batting was an absolute commitment to his method, in a manner that was almost robotic. But in the last couple of years he seems to have tried various approaches. So much so that you hardly remember what his foolproof old method was.

He has gone very hard and he has gone very cautious too. I'm not saying that he has not followed his tried-and-tested method at all but that the deviations from that method have been too frequent," he added. There is a lot of pressure on the Indian Star.

"Kohli has paid a huge price for his own success, which has included not only others judging him by the lofty standards that he set but also Kohli himself trying to replicate the player he was three years ago. You have almost been able to touch and feel his struggle, and there isn't a cricket lover who hasn't wished for it to end.

Sport should be a source of joy, not agony, for player and viewer alike. We hope that the break he has taken does the trick and the bat becomes his wand again," he added.