PERTH: Mesmerized by the way Virat Kohli beat Pakistan’s historical rivals in theirs T20 World Cup in the opening, Australian legend Greg Chappell rated the former skipper as the “most complete Indian hitter” of his time.
In a fitting response to his doubters, who had raised questions about his place in the format, Kohli slammed an unbeaten 82 to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat against Pakistan on Sunday.
Describing the innings as a “song of God,” the 74-year-old said: “None of the greats of yesteryear could have dismembered an opponent so brutally without compromising the subtleties of the art of batting than Kohli did on Sunday.”
“Kohli is the most complete Indian hitter of my time. Only the greatest of champions has the courage and intelligence to carry his imagination beyond the mortal plane. Kohli has it. Perhaps only Tiger Pataudi has come close to transcending such a stratosphere, “Chappell wrote in a column for” The Sydney Morning Herald “.

“Kohli played an inning that was as close to a ‘song of god’ as it has ever been played in T20 cricket. Like a cat playing with a new skein of wool, Kohli teased and then deftly disassembled an excellent Pakistani bowling attack until it landed undone, spent and exposed on the green carpet of the MCG “.
LEGITIMATE T20 CRICKET
Chappell further said that Kohli’s inning against Pakistan “legitimized” T20 cricket.
“It was an inning that showcased the art of batting like no other I’ve seen in a lifetime of watching cricket.
“Ironically, it was also innings that legitimized T20 cricket as, dare I say, an art form, more than any I’ve seen in the past 15 years. No one can ever dismiss T20 cricket as simple again. entertainment, “said the former India coach.
Chappell said only Australian World Cup-winning hitter Adam Gilchrist could have come close to Kohli in terms of pure strokeplay.
“I can think of many of the best hitters in the modern game who could have achieved a similar win, and probably did, but no one has ever done it with pure batting ability like Kohli did against Pakistan,” he said. .

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Virat Kohli (AFP photo)
“Only Adam Gilchrist has come close in the past, but this was even more esoteric than some of his more sublime endeavors. It was simply impossible to look away.”
That the blow came from the strongest and most avid supporter of Test cricket has made Chappell even more ecstatic.
“It gave me immense pleasure because it was played by one of Test cricket’s most loyal supporters and exponents of the past 145 years.
“This was the day T20 cricket came to maturity and the nail-biting match was played between two of the game’s youngest long-form nations in front of 90,000 enthusiastic fans, most of whom were at thousands of miles from the land of their birth, “wrote Chappell.
Not long ago there was a heated debate over Kohli’s selection in the Indian squad of the T20 World Cup as he was going through the worst phase of his career after a controversial end of his captain in all three formats of the game.
Kohli also decided to take a month’s break to tackle “mental” problems and returned with a bang to the Asian Cup, where he slammed his first international century in three years, and an inaugural one in the shorter format, against Afghanistan.
He continued his form in the home series against Australia ahead of the T20 World Cup.
“We have known for a long time that Kohli is in a rare class, but this has been done against the backdrop of a rather lean running in recent years to his high standards,” Chappell wrote.

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Image credit: Twitter handle by Virat Kohli
“Not many will have to face him in the flare that Virat has. Everyone had an opinion; most of it was centered around his eyes and / or his technique as if it were somewhat diminished. As someone who has been down that track, I was pretty sure it wasn’t.
“It’s arguably the best T20 inning of his career, and it could also be one of the most satisfying in any format. He seemed completely comfortable. He was in his element.”
WOULD MAKE SHANE WARNE PROUD
The inning arrived at Shane Warne’s home when over 90,000 fans cheered for everything and Chappell felt that if he were alive, the spin wizard would be proud of the heist.
Alert died of a heart attack in March of this year.
“Shane Warne would be proud to have his name emblazoned on the stadium’s most impressive grandstand, presiding over the proceedings on that fateful evening.
“It was definitely the coming of age of the new cricket crown jewels. Kohli wanted his team to push the line and asked anyone who loved the game of cricket to stay and watch the show until the end,” he said. Chappell.

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AFP photo
The game had its share of controversy in recent overs, when Kohli’s six was judged no-ball for height and there were also some questionable byes.
“It’s very similar to New Zealand’s punishment for the accidental overturning of the opposing club that cost them the 50-over World Cup final at the Oval in 2019,” said Chappell.
“India most likely would have won anyway, but it would not have been the foregone conclusion it has become.
“I would review that rule to give the bowler credit for the dead ball if he is good enough to hit the bat and hit the stumps,” concluded Chappell.



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