'Kohli is only 27, so for the next 7-8 years... my sincere advice to bowlers is either take up wicketkeeping or batting'
Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar has lambasted all those who troll Bollywood actress Anushka Sharma by linking her to Virat Kohli's on-field performance after every India match, terming them "frustros" with no love in their lives.
His comments come close on the heels of Kohli himself hitting out against social media trolls for targetting Sharma by saying that those who blame her for anything negative in his cricket career should be ashamed of themselves.
"All I can say is that they are frustros. I don't have an idea of the status of their relationship, but she is a lovely girl and they looked absolutely terrific together. And she brought a lot of stability in him at a time when he was just emerging as a lynchpin of India's batting. He himself has said that she has brought a lot of positivity in his life and career," Gavaskar told NDTV.
He felt Anushka has helped Kohli grow both as a human being and as a cricketer.
"For people to say that she was sitting in the stands and he got out. What would he get? He doesn't get to see her if he gets out on the first ball. He can't go out from the dressing room and meet her up over there. So all I can say is they are frustros and they have no love in their lives, and, therefore, they are taking it out on the poor girl, who has been there, been a support and backed him.
"In my opinion, she has only helped him grow as a human being and as a cricketer."
Talking about Kohli's cricketing brilliance, Gavaskar said the Delhi lad has shown that one doesn't need to play slam-bang cricket even in T20 format.
"He played cricketing shots (during his unbeaten 82 in India's 161-run chase in a tense group encounter against Australia in Mohali to enter the last-four stage of World T20) and there was no wild slogging.
"The drives were absolutely breathtaking. Everything was so right about those shots. Also, he has got the priceless gift of power and timing. And he plays correct cricket. He showed that you don't have to play slam-bang cricket in T20. You don't have to look to hit the sixes. Four boundaries in an over he hit and then ran brilliantly between the wickets and you got your 20 runs in an over," he said.
Asked if Kohli is getting the same amount of love and adulation in India as Sachin Tendulkar, Gavaskar replied: "Yes, he is winning matches for India. He is pulling India out of tough situations. And the way he is playing the game... very attractively. So no surprise that he is getting the adulation and admiration of not just the Indian cricket-loving public but just about everybody world around."
He believes Kohli can get even better.
"A batsman's peak years is from the period between 26 to 33. And he is only 27, so for the next 7-8 years... my sincere advice to bowlers is either take up wicketkeeping or batting!"