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'Kohli's longevity connected to fitness'

Source: PTI
March 08, 2024 16:26 IST
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IMAGE: Faf du Plessis said Virat Kohli's hunger for physical fitness was their connecting point when he joined RCB in 2022. Photograph: Virat Kohli/Instagram

Virat Kohli's unwavering passion for fitness is the secret behind his longevity at top-flight cricket and young cricketers should take a cue from that to build a career of their own, reckoned Royal Challengers Bangalore captain Faf du Plessis.

Kohli brought in a culture change in the Royal Challengers dressing room during his time as their skipper, making fitness a non-negotiable part of a player's life.


"He's amazing, he trains hard, he's very fit. I feel in today's age of sport, you have to be like that if you're looking for longevity. So, he will be a great example," Du Plessis told Star Sports.

Du Plessis said talent alone will not help a budding player to construct an extended career at top-level sport.

"The younger generation may feel like they can just come in and rely on their talent. Yes, they are good enough in terms of talent.

"But in terms of longevity in your body to make sure you can play for as long as possible, fitness will definitely play a role," he said.

The former South African captain, himself a gym creature, said Kohli's hunger for physical fitness was their connecting point when he joined the franchise in 2022.

"There are quite a few things that Virat and I are very similar, alike in the way we see the game or think about the game. Obviously (we think about being) athletic, train hard, be fit, eat well.

"So, we look at a holistic approach to being a professional sportsman. I think that's why we connected so well in my first season at RCB. We were very similar," he said.

Under Du Plessis, the Royal Challengers had reached the playoffs in 2022, while they finished sixth in the previous edition.

Former India and RCB pacer Varun Aaron, who recently announced his retirement, hoped Kohli would bat in IPL 2024 like he did in the 2016 edition.

Kohli scored 973 runs in IPL 2016 to top the batting charts.

"I hope he gets back to that kind of form (2016) in this IPL. The IPL is a long season and to continue that form is to be superhuman. During that season, the way he was batting, it was surreal to watch it from the side-lines," said Aaron.

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