Virat Kohli was a massive disappointment today

Posted by
2 minute read

There was an awful lot of fuss after the first half of Virat Kohli’s innings. People said he was unreal, a genius – an unreal genius. Sunil Gavaskar said he was from another planet and lest anyone ask which one, he specified that it was an undiscovered planet.

They said all sorts of things, but the general theme was that Kohli was operating on another plane of existence, playing cricket with almost unimaginable brilliance.

As a result of this, we resolved to pay careful attention today. We wanted to appreciate his extaordinary otherness and drink in his magnificence. If more splendour was in the offing, we were going to quaff it. Every last bit of it.

But you know what? We were left hugely disappointed. Virat Kohli really let us down.

It just seemed so normal. If Kohli was doing anything special, then it was playing like all the other batsmen but for slightly longer. At one point the crowd did an enormous amount of shouting and clapping, but by that point he’d been in ages and we rather felt like we’d seen it all already.

He ran singles and clipped a few fours – as batsmen do – and that was pretty much it. He didn’t even have the decency to levitate.

Journalists, pundits and fans had left us expecting a Ready-Brek glow at the very least, but there was none of that. There were no banana shots, arcing the ball around fielders. He just hit it past them – or quite often to them. He didn’t play too many stupid shots and he didn’t mishit all that many, but it’s hard to get too worked up about what you’re not seeing.

So, in summary: normal cricket, only drawn out for quite an extended period.

England should still endeavour to set India an awkward chase. That step alone is already in the realm of unIikeliness, but if the pitch goes utterly to shit and they then fluke their opponents out for less than a hundred, it would be utterly hilarious. They don’t remotely deserve a win, but there is no role for justice in the formulation of a good joke.


Mike Gatting wasn't receiving the King Cricket email when he dropped that ludicrously easy chance against India in 1993.


Why risk it when it's so easy to sign up?


  1. I’m not just hoping for an England win still, I’m expecting one.

    Anything less than a win and I’ll go off the deep end.

    Execute skill sets…in the right areas…as a unit…it’s not complicated.

    Failure is not an option. There are no prizes for coming second.

    1. Mercifully, I am quite a good swimmer and well rested overnight, having had no particular reason to allow my sleep to be disturbed.

      So I’ll be fine, here at the deep end.

  2. That’s not all he did. He also tried to manipulate the umpires into giving decisions that he well knew were wrong. Such is his magnificence that he was actually successful.

    1. Discovering a new planet would be good. Discovering life on that planet would be extraordinary.

      But if it were then revealed that cricket had independently evolved on that planet and that these lifeforms were playing to a decent standard? Well now. That would unquestionably be the greatest development in human history.

  3. Here’s an interesting stat or two. As captain, Alastair Cook’s batting average falls from 46.36 to 46.91, a collapse of minus more than half a point. One can only assume that this is due to the excessive pressure of captaincy taking his mind off his batting. And over the last two years, his average has gone from the aforementioned 46-ish to a risible 48.58, again clearly demonstrating his recent paucity of form.

    I mention this because there seem to be a pile of calls this morning for him to be replaced as captain in favour of Joe Root, on the basis that it would free him to concentrate on his batting. Bullshit. He needs to be replaced because he is an utterly nondescript captain – overly conservative, lacking imagination, and incapable of creating a heterogeneous team structure that can get the best out of individual players. His finest captaincy moments have coincided with great bowling performances and suitable conditions, not an uncommon characteristic of captaincy but nonetheless indicative of his superfluousness. He is the grey man of English cricket, comfortable in his greyness and deeply distrustful of people who can wear orange.

    That’s why he needs to be replaced as captain.

Comments are closed.