Former Indian all-rounder Irfan Pathan has stated that current Indian Captain, Virat Kohli is similar to ex-captain Sourav Ganguly. Kohli came to the senior team after playing U-19 cricket. Also, Pathan explained why a player who’s good at the junior level, doesn’t goes on to play at his/her full potential.
“We have seen so many Under-19 India players who vanish after playing the U-19 World Cup. They don’t end up fulfilling their potential at the international level which they might have. Also, we have so many cricketers playing the U-19 World Cup and then going on to play for India. In between, there is a bridge which is first-class cricket,” Pathan told Star Sports’ Cricket Connected show.
“I think we need to make sure that you have the right mentality to reach at the bigger level, at the same time, making your game bigger, I think that’s the biggest challenge any cricketer faces who plays U-19. At the U-19, you need to make sure that you strive to get better as a cricketer. The competition level isn’t the same at the U-19 level, first-class level, and at the international level. You need to keep changing your cricketing ability, but at the same time, your mentality as well which is very, very important.” Pathan further added.
Irfan Pathan Appreciates Kohli’s Way Of Treating His Younger Players
While counting on the similarities between Kohli and Ganguly, Pathan pointed out the time when Kohli backed Rishabh Pant when the wicketkeeper-batsman was struggling in international cricket.
“He is very similar to Sourav Ganguly as well. A guy who backs his youngsters really, really well. Virat Kohli has that aura about him that he goes out of his way to back the youngsters. We have seen that with Rishabh Pant, we have seen the press conferences, he goes and says, ‘No, we need to back a guy like Rishabh Pant purely on his potential,” Pathan concluded.