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Kohli lauds Jadeja, says he deserves No 1 bowler ranking

Last updated on: August 08, 2013 15:04 IST

Kohli lauds Jadeja, says he deserves No 1 bowler ranking

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Manu Shankar New Delhi

Terming Ravindra Jadeja as a very handy all-rounder, star batsman Virat Kohli feels the left-arm spinner has made huge strides in international cricket over the last couple of years.

“I’m really happy for Jadeja to get the No. 1 ODI bowler ranking and, frankly speaking, I’m not surprised.

“He has made huge strides in international cricket, especially in ODIs. He has been consistent with his bowling and is a very handy all-rounder, as he chips in with the bat as well whenever the team needs it,” said Kohli, on the sidelines of a function in Delhi on Wednesday.

“I have played Under-19 cricket with him. In fact, I was the captain when he played in the Under-19 World Cup. He has always made an impact on the field; he controls the runs. So, in that aspect, he has had a huge impact on our wins,” added India’s skipper on the just-concluded tour of Zimbabwe.


Image: Ravindra Jadeja
Photographs: Michael Steele/Getty Images

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'Captaincy has its pressure and responsibilities'

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Earlier this week, Jadeja became the first Indian to top the bowlers' chart in the ICC ODI Player Rankings, since former captain Anil Kumble claimed pole position way back in 1996.

Jadeja, who took five wickets in five matches in the Zimbabwe ODI series, which India won 5-0, leapt four places to join West Indies' off-spinner Sunil Narine atop the list.

Describing the Zimbabwe tour as a different experience, Kohli said there is lot at stake when one is leading the side.

“It’s a different experience. Obviously, there is lot at stake and it’s perhaps the biggest post in the sport that we have in our country.

“It has its pressure and responsibilities that come along, but I enjoyed each and every moment of it,” said Kohli.


Image: Virat Kohli


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Dhoni's tips helped immensely

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He was, however, quick to attribute his success to regular skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni.

“I spoke to him (Dhoni) a lot about how to keep your composure in difficult situations, because I’ve seen him; he doesn’t react at all and I try to learn a lot from.

“I spoke to him about field placements and how to control the situation; how to go attacking, how to go defensive.

“I observe him a lot when I’m on the field with him and that has helped me in dealing with difficult situations,” he said.


Image: Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni
Photographs: Gareth Copley/Getty Images

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'I'm delighted to get two months' break'

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Asked whether he spoke with Dhoni after the returning from Zimbabwe, Kohli shot back: “Mahi is presently enjoying a break. When he goes away for a holiday it is very hard to contact him. I tried to message him on the phone but couldn't reach. I guess I'll be seeing him soon and speak to him about it.”

Kohli is now looking forward to the two months’ break he has ahead of the Australia and South Africa series.

“I’m delighted to get two months’ break. This first month I will be taking it easy; after that I will get back and prepare hard for the Australia series,” said the 24-year-old.


Image: Virat Kohli
Photographs: Gareth Copley/Getty Images

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'Emerging Players tournament is good experience for cricketers'

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The India ‘A’ team, which includes players like Suresh Raina, Dinesh Karthik and Cheteshwar Pujara, is touring South Africa from August 8 to 27, and Kohli feels the trip will good exposure.

“The Emerging Players tournament is good experience for cricketers. I remember I made a comeback because of that tournament. It's a very competitive tournament. I am sure every player will give his 100 per cent in the field and come out better."


Image: Suresh Raina
Photographs: Gareth Copley/Getty Images

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