Kohli credits ‘special chat’ with De Villiers for return to form

Virat Kohli AB de Villiers

India captain Virat Kohli has revealed how a chat with AB de Villiers was partly responsible for his timely return to form during their victory over England in a T20 international on Sunday.

Kohli led his team to a seven-wicket win in the second match of their series – to square it at 1-1 – with a fine, unbeaten 73.

However, prior to the knock, Kohli was dismissed for a duck in the first game on Friday, which was his third score of nought in his last five knocks. It was also the first time during his career of 761 innings across formats that Kohli was dismissed in consecutive defeats.

The stylish right-hander’s only other knock of some substance in recent weeks was a gritty 62 in the second Test, and a 27 in the day-night Test against the same opponents on home soil.

During a chat with the local broadcasters in England after Sunday’s innings, Kohli revealed he had spoken to his friend and teammate at Indian Premier League side Royal Challengers Bangalore, none other than Proteas legend De Villiers.

“Kept my eye on the ball. The management spoke to me about things. Anushka [Kohli’s wife] is here, so she also keeps speaking to me about things,” Kohli said after the game.

“And I had a special chat with AB de Villiers before this game and he told me just to watch the ball. So I did.”

The third T20 takes place in Ahmedabad on Tuesday.