Virat hasn't changed much since childhood, says coach Rajkumar Sharma

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Virat hasn't changed much since childhood, says coach Rajkumar Sharma

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SportsCafe Desk

08/24/2016

Rajkumar Sharma, who will be conferred with the Dronacharya Award, has been Virat Kohli’s coach since the age of 10, and he believes that India’s Test captain has not changed much since childhood. Sharma also added that Kohli has matured into a responsible young man from a teenager.

Everyone know Virat Kohli as the U-19 World Cup winning captain, current Indian Test captain, and as a swashbuckling batsman. But, the force behind Kohli’s rise to the top of the cricketing world has been one man - Rajkumar Sharma, who has been Kohli’s coach since the age of 10. The 51-year-old will be conferred with the prestigious Dronacharya Award on August 29, and speaking about his achievement, Sharma said that for him the Indian Test skipper is still the “same old little Virat”.

It's a huge honour which increases your responsibility to produce not one but many more Virats."

"It's a huge honour which increases your responsibility to produce not one but many more Virats. I still remember the day when a 10-year-old Virat came to my coaching camp. Today as an Indian captain when he comes for a net session, I don't find any difference. He is still the same old little Virat for me. Nothing has changed for him," the 51-year-old former first-class cricketer told PTI.

However, with Kohli away with the Indian team in Florida for the T20 series against the West Indies, he will miss the award ceremony of his favourite coach.

"When Virat got the Arjuna Award in 2013, I was there at the Rashtrapati Bhavan, and he told me then next time I would be receiving Droancharya, and he would be applauding from the audience. Wish Virat did not have international commitments (he will be on his flight back from the US), and he would be have been there at Rashtrapati Bhavan on 29 August," said Sharma.

Also, read : Virat Kohli | Evolution of a brattish talent to a global superstar

Rajkumar Sharma also remembered a phase in Kohli’s career when questions were raised about his focus on cricket.

Every coach has a duty just like a parent to keep a check on the progress of his ward."

"Every coach has a duty just like a parent to keep a check on the progress of his ward. There was phase and he was only 19 years old. Instant stardom after U-19 World Cup victory and a contract with RCB, it can happen with kids.

"It's at that point when the coach's role comes into play. You have to give the boy right guidance. It was my duty as he is like my son," said Sharma, who has played 9 Ranji games as an off-spinner for Delhi.

The coach also added that with age Virat has matured into a responsible young man from a teenager.

"Maturity comes with age. There are a lot of things that a coach can't do. There is a process of self-realization and the person knows what is right for him. Virat went through that process on his own and let me tell you I had no role in that process. The transformation from a teenager to responsible young man has happened because he knew what he needed to do," said Sharma, reported PTI.

"Even today when he is considered among the best batsmen in world cricket, he will intently listen when I speak to him about his feet movement or back lift. When you find that he is still ready to listen then you know that the head and the heart is in right place."

Also, read : MS Dhoni and Virat Kohli | Captain Cool v Captain Aggressive

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