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Used to tell people I wanted to be like Sachin: Kohli

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VIRAT KOHLI

New Delhi, Sep 7 (IANS) Indian captain Virat Kohli has constantly drawn comparisons with Sachin Tendulkar due to his consistent performances that have broken a number of records over the years. However, he has always tried to stay away from any such talk and maintained that Tendulkar was one of his childhood heroes.

Kohli recently revealed that he never shied away from telling people that he wanted to be like Tendulkar in his growing up years. “What he did from the pure skill point of view, just the way he was able to bat, was so much more different to anyone else and that just fascinated me,” he told sports web-show, ‘In Depth with Graham Bensinger’.

“I was like man, this is so much more different and it was so captivating you just couldn’t take your eyes off when he was batting. I used to go to these shops and get my packet of chips and my nibbles and just sit in front of the TV to watch him bat, and it was just pure joy. I used to tell people, I want to be like Sachin.”

Kohli is now considered one of the best batsmen in the world across formats but he has always been known in particular for his tendency to score big in tight chases. “The one thing I remember was when I used to watch the Indian team play, whenever the Indian team was chasing and they faltered, I promise you I used to go to sleep thinking, if I was in the Indian shirt, I used to dream of it, and I was in that situation, I could have done it. And it’s happened so many times in my career till now, that I’ve been involved in a chase and I finished the game off and I don’t know whether it was that conviction that formed in my head when I was that young. When I’m in that situation now, everything just takes over so that’s the power of the mind,” Kohli said.

Kohli said that the absence of fear or respect for him whenever he walked out to bat from the opposition players is one of the factors that spurred him to get to the peak of his art. “(There was a time) when I walked in to bat, there wasn’t any fear or respect in opposition corner,” he said.

“I didn’t want to walk into the ground thinking that opposition feels that this guy is a pushover, who is going to do no damage. Just didn’t want to be another player as I wanted to make an impact. I wanted that when I walk in, the teams should think that we need to get this guy out or else we will lose the game. And if I don’t want to be that guy, then there is something wrong in my head.”

Kohli’s obsession with his fitness is seen as something that has changed the Indian team’s attitude towards the more unglamorous aspects of the game such as grinding it out in the gym. He said that he realised the need for that change in India’s disastrous 2012 tour of Australia in which they were decimated in the Test series 4-0.

“When we came back from Australia in 2012, I saw a gap (between us and Australia). I realised, if we don’t change the way we are playing, training or eating, we can’t compete with the best in the world.

“No point in competing if you don’t want to be the best. I wanted to be the best version of myself and then based everything around that vision, my approach to the game changed,” he said.

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My eyes fixed firmly on Women’s World Cup trophy: Mithali Raj

The right-handed bastwoman, one of India’s most successful female cricketer, has so far scored 6888 runs in 209 ODIs, 663 runs in 10 Tests and 2364 runs in 89 T20Is.

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Mithali Raj

New Delhi, Aug 8 : Veteran India batter Mithali Raj has said that she is “definitely looking” at the ICC Women’s World Cup, which has been postponed to 2022 and has added that her eyes are firmly fixed on the trophy.

On Friday, the International Cricket Council decided to postpone the World Cup, originally slated to be held in New Zealand in 2021, until February-March 2022 because of the impact the coronavirus pandemic.

“Whilst this is never great news to wake up to. I can understand the reasons why given the lack of cricket in some countries. I just hope those players who were planning to retire after the World Cup can hold on for one year…right Mithali Raj, Jhulan Goswami and Rachael Haynes,” cricketer-turned-commentator Lisa Sthalekar tweeted following ICC’s decision to postpone Women’s World Cup.

To this, Mithali replied: “Oh absolutely, my eyes are fixed firmly on the trophy. With all niggles recovered, mind and body fresh and stronger than before, I am definitely looking at World Cup 2022.”

Mithali had led the Indian eves to the final of the showpiece event in 2017 where they had to face a heart-wrenching defeat against England in the summit clash at the iconic Lord’s.

The right-handed bastwoman, one of India’s most successful female cricketer, has so far scored 6888 runs in 209 ODIs, 663 runs in 10 Tests and 2364 runs in 89 T20Is.

The 37-year-old has already retired from T20 cricket and now aspires to win India their maiden World Cup for which she will now have to wait at least until 2022.

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Madrid Masters tennis tournament cancelled: organisers

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Madrid Masters tennis

The Madrid Open that was scheduled to take place from Sept. 12-20 has been cancelled due to the rise of COVID-19 cases in the Spanish Capital, Organisers said on Thursday.

“As an act of responsibility in view of the current situation caused by COVID-19 and having thoroughly evaluated the circumstance that the pandemic continues to generate… it has been decided that 2020 Muta Madrid Open will not take place this year,” organisers said in a satatement.

The tounament, which was to feature both men’s and women’s draws, was seen as an important event for players to prepare for the Frech Open which begins on Sept. 27.

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BCCI issues SOP; players must sign consent form before resuming training

BCCI is responsible for ensuring the resumption of cricketing activity in India to help secure employment of all its workforce and also provide a source of entertainment to the fans at the earliest.

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bcci

New Delhi, Aug 2 : The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Sunday issued the Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) to the state associations for the resumption of cricket. While these will help the state bodies restart cricketing activities, all players will have to sign consent forms before getting back to training.

In the 100-page SOP, accessed by IANS, the BCCI has touched on principles while returning to training, ground and practice facilities preparation with an eye on the pandemic, gymnasium protocols, physiotherapy and medical protocols as well as protocols to manage a suspected COVID-19 case.

It also has the consent form where the players have to acknowledge that there is risk associated with resuming training and that the player has been informed about the protocols in place and the precautions taken by the association.

The player also needs to acknowledge that the association can’t guarantee complete elimination of risk despite taking necessary precautions and that the player is willing to resume training.

With an eye on the whole situation with regards to the coronavirus pandemic, the BCCI has shared its views with the state bodies with regards to resumption of cricket.

“The BCCI as the governing body for the sport of cricket in India is responsible for ensuring that appropriate protocols are put in place to protect the health and safety of players, staff and all stakeholders. Covid-19, an infectious disease primarily affecting the lungs, poses a serious threat to the health of individuals as is evident from its spread to almost all countries around the world with more than 17.5 million infections and over 0.6 million deaths as on 1st August 2020. As the world grapples with Covid-19, cricketing activity has come to a standstill and players confined to the four walls within their homes.

“It is said that cricket is a religion in India and the fanfare and fervor that cricket commands are far greater than any other sport or event in the country. Besides, it also helps generate tremendous revenue and employs players and staff across 38 State teams, both in the men and women category. BCCI is responsible for ensuring the resumption of cricketing activity in India to help secure employment of all its workforce and also provide a source of entertainment to the fans at the earliest.

“However, the BCCI is concerned about the high infectivity rate of SARS CoV-2 and in the interest of health and safety of all players, staff and stakeholders, the BCCI would not like to compromise on the preventive measures by resuming too soon,” the SOP read.

“The purpose of these protocols is to ensure the safe resumption of cricket activities and the below guidelines may be amended from time to time as may be required depending on the existing Covid-19 situation in the country and the guidelines issued by the Government of India at appropriate times. These guidelines have been prepared by the BCCI Medical Team.

“All BCCI affiliated State Cricket Associations will adhere to these guidelines and take additional measures as may be necessary to prevent the spread of Covid-19 infection. Approvals must also be sought from local administration and health authorities before commencing any cricket activity. The health and safety of players, staff and stakeholders will be the sole responsibility of respective State Cricket Associations.”

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