ICC U-19 World Cup: Virat Kohli's Words Of Wisdom For Team India Ahead Of Mega Tournament
With the 2018 ICC U-19 World Cup around the corner, Kohli has urged the current Indian team to 'respect the opportunity' that they are getting as it is a platform that can propel one's career.
Indian captain Virat Kohli burst onto the international circuit after displaying a spirited performance throughout the tournament and guiding his team to lift the ICC Under-19 World Cup back in 2008. With the 2018 ICC U-19 World Cup around the corner, Kohli has urged the current Indian team to 'respect the opportunity' that they are getting as it is a platform that can propel one's career. The India team led by Prithvi Shaw and coached by Rahul Dravid will fight for the title in New Zealand starting January 13.
"The ICC U-19 World Cup was a very important milestone in my career. It helped us get a good platform to build on and make our careers from thereon, so it holds a very important place in my mind and heart. It's very important to understand and respect the opportunity it provides you," Kohli was quoted as saying in an ICC media release.
Kohli recalled his semi-finals clash against Kane Williamson-led New Zealand, which India won.
"I remember playing against Kane. He was someone who always stood out in the team, his batting ability was very different from the other players who were around," Kohli recalled.
"Steve (Smith) and I did not quite play against at the U-19 level, so I didn't watch him bat, but he has come a long way in his career as well. It is good to know that so many people from that batch, not just three of us captaining our countries, but apart from that a lot of players have played for their respective countries."
Williamson, on his part, said: "It is a great stepping stone. Playing international cricket within your age group allows players to see slightly higher standards, the best of the best from the under-19 perspective, so (it is) a great tournament to be involved in."
The New Zealand skipper feels that since the U-19 World Cup happens once in every two years, youngsters should grab the opportunity as there are no guarantees how many will go onto play the senior World Cup that happens once in four years.
"You don't get many opportunities to play World Cups, obviously at the top level - it is once every four years, if you are fortunate enough to be involved.
"So the opportunity to play at the age-group level is a very exciting opportunity and one that should be enjoyed."
(with PTI inputs)