Former Pakistan cricketer Danish Kaneria emphasized that drawing comparisons between Pakistan captain Babar Azam and India’s batting maestro Virat Kohli would be unfair, as Kohli stands miles ahead of Azam in terms of performance and skill. Kaneria lauded Kohli’s recent innings during India’s opening match of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 against Australia in Chennai.
In a challenging chase of 200 runs, India endured a rocky start, with the team at 2/3 and the early dismissals of Rohit Sharma, Ishan Kishan, and Shreyas Iyer. However, Kohli often hailed as the “Chase Master,” displayed his talent by scoring a crucial 85 runs. He partnered with KL Rahul, who remained unbeaten on 97, to build a formidable fourth-wicket stand of 165 runs. This partnership propelled India to a six-wicket victory, achieved in 41.2 overs.
Kaneria showered praise on Kohli, stating in a YouTube video, “Virat Kohli is a maestro. There is no bigger player than him. People compare Babar Azam to Virat Kohli, but Babar Azam is nowhere near him. The way he guided India to a victory against Australia was not easy. Yes, he did get a chance, but dropped catches are part and parcel of the game. Losing and impossible are two words that don’t apply to Virat Kohli.”
Babar Azam Had A Complete Opposite Start Than Virat Kohli
In contrast to Kohli’s stellar performance, Babar Azam faced a lackluster outing during Pakistan’s opening match against the Netherlands in the 2023 World Cup. The top-ranked ODI batsman managed to score only five runs from 18 deliveries before departing.
Kaneria also commended the Indian selectors’ decision to include left-arm spinner Kuldeep Yadav in the 2023 World Cup squad, favoring him over the seasoned leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal. Kaneria attributed this choice to Kuldeep’s superior recent form, predicting that India’s spin attack would pose a formidable challenge to opposing teams in the tournament.
Highlighting Kuldeep Yadav’s contributions, Kaneria stated, “The Indian selectors should be appreciated for going with Kuldeep Yadav over Yuzvendra Chahal. Kuldeep is bowling far better than Chahal at the moment. This Indian spin trio is a very dangerous combination. Every team will find it difficult to negate them because there is variety in that spin attack.”
Kuldeep Yadav made significant contributions in India’s match against Australia, taking two wickets. Notably, he has been the most successful Indian bowler in ODIs this year, claiming 35 wickets in 18 matches. India will face Afghanistan on 11th October in Delhi.
India will face arch-rivals Pakistan on 14th October in Ahmedabad. Kuldeep Yadav and Virat Kohli will try to replicate their performances which they displayed against Pakistan in the Asia Cup 2023. Virat Kohli played a brilliant innings of 122* while Kuldeep Yadav took a fifer.