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Virat Kohli, one of the world's greatest batsmen turns 34 today. There may not be a sweeter year to celebrate King Kohli's birthday, with his profession on the cricketing front blazing bright, especially after his spectacular accomplishment in the current T20 World Cup.
"Real Heroes will rise with the Punches," were words used by industrialist Anand Mahindra to aptly describe Virat Kohli after the former captain smashed a fine century against Afghanistan during the #INDvsAFG Asia Cup campaign in Dubai.
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Kohli, one of the world's greatest batsmen, turns 34 today. There may not be a sweeter year to celebrate King Kohli's birthday, with his profession on the cricketing front blazing bright, especially after his spectacular accomplishment in the current T20 World Cup.
The superstar batsman began receiving birthday wishes in advance. Glenn Maxwell of Australia was among the first to wish the chase master a heartfelt message on live television.
As Kohli celebrates his 34th birthday, millions of Virat Kohli fans began wishing him a "happy birthday" on social networks. Some fans created a giant cutout of the former Indian ODI captain in Hyderabad.
Meanwhile, Kohli has been in brilliant form at the ongoing World Cup so far, scoring 220 runs in four matches.
The rise of King Kohli
Kohli was a big fan of Cricket and was one of the first students to enrol at the West Delhi Cricket Academy when it was founded in 1998 after his neighbours urged that he undergo formal training.
His career trajectory shifted dramatically in 2008 when he was selected to the Indian Cricket ODI team for the tour of Sri Lanka and the Champions Trophy to Pakistan. At just the age of 19, he scored his maiden fifty in the fourth match.
In 2009, he was also chosen for the four-team Emerging Players Tournament in Australia, where his performance stunned the globe. Kohli was picked up to replace an injured Shikhar Dhawan for the unofficial test trip, where he batted once and scored 49 runs.
Kohli was subsequently given the opportunity to participate in all five matches in the tri-nation ODI competition in Bangladesh.
Also read: Following his knock against Pakistan, Virat Kohli now at no.9 in the latest ICC T20I rankings for batsmen
When India was chasing 297 and struggled at 51/3 against Bangladesh, Kohli struck 91 to rescue India and secure the victory. Kohli performed extraordinarily well, becoming the tournament's top runner and the third batter in history to reach two ODI hundred before age 22, following Sachin Tendulkar and Suresh Raina.
His effort was lauded, particularly by Indian captain M.S. Dhoni.
He was subsequently selected as vice-captain in the tri-series against Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe in 2010, and there was no turning back. He became the fastest Indian batsman to secure 1000 runs in ODIs.
Kohli was named full-time Test captain after MS Dhoni stepped down from the position in the middle of a series against Australia in 2014. With his tenacity and commitment, he solidified himself as one of the finest thinkers the country has seen in Test cricket.
Also read: T20 World Cup: Virat Kohli made Indians skip doing UPI transactions during his match-winning knock against Pakistan
Despite occasional struggles with his form, his dedication secured him a permanent berth on the Indian squad. He featured in the International World Cup and was one of the star players who led the men in blue to a triumphant victory after 28 years.
Every sport has a few names that command the whole discipline for centuries at a stretch. There's Messi and Ronaldo in football, Nadal and Federer in tennis, and no one can deny that Virat Kohli is the man himself in cricket.
Not often do we come across a great personality who alters the essence of a word. For this generation, Virat Kohli has reinvented what it means to be a cricketer in India and abroad. His grandeur is unparalleled in the Cricket world, as are his accomplishments.
Also read: T20 World Cup 2022: It's very hard to keep guys like Virat Kohli down for too long says Brett Lee