Former captain and Pakistan women’s cricket legend Sana Mir has called Virat Kohli a ‘role model’ for his gesture towards his opponents even after defeat stating the Indian men’s team skipper is a secured individual.
India were undone by Pakistan by 10 wickets for the first time in an ICC tournament in their opening Super 12 game of the ongoing T20 World Cup on Sunday in Dubai. However, one of the most endearing images from the match was of the Indian captain hugging winning team hero Mohammed Rizwan.
“Virat Kohli handled the defeat with so much grace and I admire his sportsman spirit. It’s really good to see the top athletes, who are role models, behaving in the way he did,” Mir wrote in her column for the ICC’s official website.
“It shows a lot of security within, and it means they have a lot of confidence to bounce back,” she further wrote. Mir said she won’t be surprised if India come back in the tournament with some big wins.
Batting first, India made a disastrous start when they lost both openers Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul were beaten by Shaheen Shah Afridi's pace. However, it was Kohli's 57 and Rishabh Pant's 39 that propelled India to 151/7 in 20 overs.
In reply, Pakistan openers Rizwan and Babar Azam scored unbeaten knocks of 79 and 68 respectively to see the team home in 17.5 overs. It was also Pakistan's first win over India in World Cups.
“I won’t be surprised if India bounce back very quickly and in a big fashion and I hope we can see Pakistan and India play each other again in this tournament.” On Pakistan, the legendary woman cricketer said she liked skipper Babar Azam’s attitude of looking immediately towards the next assignment instead of enjoying a prolonged celebration.
“With this performance, Pakistan have definitely become one of the favourites for the tournament, but it was heartening to see Babar and Shaheen not get carried away when in front of the media, they were focused on the next games,” she said.
“It is a great sign that they are staying level-headed and shows the team is going in the right direction,” she further wrote.