Virat Kohli is one of the most successful cricketers in the world and is currently the face of the sport in cricket crazy India as he took the mantle from former captain MS Dhoni.
Here is everything you need to know about the India captain, who has successfully made it to the top of the cricketing world.
Who is Virat Kohli?
Born on 5 November 1988 in New Delhi, India to a Punjabi family, Virat Kohli is the son of the late Prem Kohli, a criminal lawyer by profession and mother Saroj, who is a homemaker. The right-handed batsman picked up the cricket bat when he was three years old and asked his father to bowl at him.
Rajkumar Sharma, a former domestic cricket player in India started the West Delhi Cricket Academy in 1998. Kohli's father enrolled him with the academy when he was nine years old, which was a turning point during his budding years.
He represented Delhi in the Under-15 and Under-17 stages, where he impressed with the bat. Tragedy struck Kohli and his family when his father passed away in December 2006 due to a brain stroke. But that did not stop him from chasing his dream and through impressive batting skills he was named the captain of the India Under-19 team. He guided the national side to win the 2008 Under-19 World Cup held in Malaysia.
Kohli's success with the squad coincided with the first edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) auction, where he was picked up by Royal Challengers Bangalore. He was called for the senior side for India's ODI series against Sri Lanka in 2008 after Virender Sehwag and Sachin Tendulkar were both ruled out due to injuries.
He was dropped subsequently after the duo returned, but that did not deter Kohli, who made a comeback in the domestic setup to prove his worth. When India travelled to Australia in 2009, Kohli was recalled for the tri-series and became the top scorer in the tournament, fetching with 398 runs from seven matches. He helped India win the series with his impressive skills with the bat in the number three position.
The series was the turning point in his international career and he became a regular in the ODI squad. After being in and out of the Test squad, Kohli cemented his place in the longer format of the game when he was recalled for the West Indies tour of India in 2011. He is now India's captain across all three formats.
Virat Kohli's career highlights
- The 28-year-old came into spotlight when he decided to play a domestic match against Karnataka, a southern state in India on the day after his father passed away. He fell 10 runs short of a century and proceeded to attend the funeral after he was dismissed.
- Kohli led India to win the 2008 ICC Under-19 World Cup in Malaysia, where they went on to beat South Africa in a rain-affected, low scoring final.
- The then youngster was roped in by IPL franchise Royal Challengers Bangalore for $30,000 (£24,000) on a youth contract. He is still with the Bangalore-based outfit and will continue to play for the same team for the 10<sup>th year in a row.
- Kohli was included in the senior team for India's tour of Sri Lanka in 2008. He scored 12 runs on his debut against Sri Lanka when he opened India's innings. In the fourth match, he scored his first half century and helped India win the match and the series.
- Kohli was called for the 2009 Emerging Players Tournament Tri-series between India, Australia and South Africa in Australia. He was the top run-getter of the tournament and scored 398 runs from seven matches, which included two tons and two fifties. On of his centuries came against the Proteas in the final.
- He scored his first ODI century against Australia in December 2009. He made 107 off 111 deliveries. After being in and out of the playing XI, Kohli cemented a place in the ODI squad in 2010 and since then has maintained his place in the side.
- Kohli was part of the Indian side that defeated Sri Lanka in the final to win the 2011 ICC World Cup on home soil. His 83-run partnership with Gautam Gambhir for the third wicket, was crucial for India's glory.
- He made his Test debut against West Indies in 2011 and has held his place in the side since 2012.
- Kohli was one of the star batsmen for India when they won the ICC Champions Trophy in 2013, where they defeated host nation England in the final.
- He became the joint-record holder to reach 5000 runs in ODIs in 114 innings. Kohli shares the record with Sir Vivian Richards.
- He is the fastest Indian player to score a century in ODIs and achieved the feat in 52 balls against Australia in 2013.
- Kohli is also the fastest batsman in the world to score 17 ODI centuries.
- In January 2017, Kohli became India's captain across all three formats.
- Under Kohli's guidance, India were successful in clinching a series victory over all major Test playing nations in a season. During this process, India became the number one ranked Test team.
What is Virat Kohli's net worth?
According to The Hindustan Times, Kohli was valued at $92m as of February 2017. Later that month he became the first Indian sportsman to sign a Rs1bn (£12.3m, $15.3m) deal with sports brand Puma. His performance with the bat and rise to the role of the captain has made him a highly marketable player in India.
Who is Virat Kohli's partner?
Kohli is not married, but is currently dating Bollywood star Anushka Sharma. She has established a career in the Indian film industry and is currently one of the highest paid actresses in the country.
When is Virat Kohli's IPL 2017 return?
The India captain suffered a shoulder injury in the third Test against Australia and missed the fourth and the final Test as the hosts clinched the series 2-1. The latest injury setback ruled him out for the first few IPL fixtures and the BCCI confirmed that Kohli has been declared fit and is eligible for selection when Royal Challengers Bangalore take on Mumbai Indians on 14 April.