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Mohammad Azharuddin wants Virat Kohli to go the Younis Khan way

India Today logo India Today 19-08-2016
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His tips worked well enough for Pakistan's Younis Khan and now Mohammad Azharuddin has words of advice for Virat Kohli. Only last week, Azhar had called up a 'struggling' Younis in England and asked him to bat a yard inside the crease to counter the swinging ball an when Younis applied that to his game, the result surprised his own self. He was the first one to acknowledge the value of Azhar's tips in scoring 218 in the Oval Test and now the former India captain has the same words of wisdom to the current Indian captain.

"What I told Younis was based on my own experience," Azhar told India Today, "I told him he was such a great batsman but by jumping up and down he appeared pale shadow of a batsman with 31 Test centuries to his name. Credit to Younis for listening to me and them applying that to his batting at the Oval."

Azhar wants Virat to follow suit. There have been instances of Virat standing way outside the crease, and Azhar feels this will actually hamper Virat in conditions favouring swing. "The the best way to counter swing and pace is to allow yourself little more time. And if you stand back inside the crease it allows you a little more time against faster bowlers where you can adjust your backfoot play. And I can tell you the difference in those two-three yards help you play swing better because you know by then how much is it going to swing," Azhar advised Virat.

"Virat is a great player but I saw him struggle a bit in England in 2014 when he was unsure about the swinging ball outside off. These days batsmen aren't exposed to much swing bowling but every great batsman like Virat will know how to adapt in different conditions. I hope he gives a thought to this change because the swinging ball is probably the only thing left for him to conquer and by standing outside the crease, I feel he is only cramping himself."

While Virat began the West Indies tour with a superlative double century, he would be hoping to end the series on a perfect note. A win and a century will only befit the occasion. "He is too mature a player," Azhar opined, noting further: "Hope he gains from my suggestion.

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