India vs South Africa: In every sport, in different eras, generations and skill, there is a rivalry that people can’t stop but talk about. In football, we had had the Brazilian magician, Pele competing against the Argentinian maestro Diego Maradona, a couple of decades ago. Times changed, generations changed and so did the rivalry. We now have Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and millions of passionate fans talking about them. Similarly in cricket, for years people kept debating on who is a better batsman between Sachin Tendulkar and Brian Lara. Even today, when the cricket fans meet, the discussion remains the same but the names have changed. Now, the contest for supremacy is between Virat Kohli and AB De Villiers which will get another twist on Sunday when India will take on South Africa in a must-win match in the ICC Champions Trophy.
Kohli, a 28-year-old dynamic batsman who is breaking all the cricketing records on his way to become a legend while AB De Villiers, a 360-degree player who has redefined the way batting is done. One has just taken over the captaincy of his side and would be aiming to lift his first major ICC Trophy while other is at the dusk of his career and might be playing one of his last ICC tournaments. There are some many similarities between these two players that it is almost to pick one of them.
Watch India vs South Africa Champions Trophy 2013 highlights:
‘Ye mereko pange mein daal rahe ho’, laughed Mandeep when he was asked to choose between Virat Kohli and AB De Villiers in an exclusive conversation with the FinancialExpress.com. “They both are really good batsmen, but when you consider the current performance, definitely Virat is a better player,” said India’s former Under-19 vice-captain who has been sharing the dressing room with both the modern day legends in the Indian Premier League.
There is so much this rivalry has to offer and yet, both the players have maintained mutual respect for each other. However, when these two forces will meet on Sunday, there will be more in common between them than just skill, talent and records.
MS Dhoni’s knock against Sri Lanka:
Interestingly, both Kohli and De Villiers got out for a duck in their previous matches and had to see their teams lose. While South Africa was defeated by Pakistan as ABD was dismissed for a golden duck for the first time in his career, India was stunned by Sri Lanka as skipper Kohli was dismissed even before he could open his account.
So, the math is very clear. When they perform, the team wins. When they don’t, it doesn’t. Who will on Sunday? Only time will tell.