After his all-time great Test knock, Virat Kohli isn’t interested in “what if?”
What if he placed that ball a fraction better, instead of being caught on the fence?
“I went for my shot. I don’t have any regrets,” India’s acting captain said.
“I could have placed it better. Had it gone for a boundary, things could have been different. But those are big ifs.”
What if his highest Test score led to India pulling off one of the greatest run chases in Test history?
“No regrets,” Kohli said after crafting a masterpiece, a glorious 141.
His highest Test score was his second century of the game, only the fourth Indian to achieve the feat.
And it reminded Australian captain Michael Clarke of Sachin Tendulkar – surely there’s no greater praise.
“I remember watching Sachin play for so many years and really enjoying watching him bat on television. But when you play against him, it’s not the same feeling, you want to get him out,” Clarke said.
“And Virat was probably like that today.”
Kohli said steering India’s brave run chase made any personal milestone irrelevant.
“It’s the first time I have been able to do that in Test cricket,” he said.
“I was just reacting to watching the ball and being positive … playing on instinct.”
But when his century came Kohli veered, perhaps deliberately, in the direction of mid-on where David Warner was standing.
The bullish pair had locked horns the previous day. And as Kohli expressed his delight, Warner stood like a statue, not moved to applaud the Indian.
The rough-edged Warner clearly isn’t fond of fashionista Kohli, who is launching a self-described “breakaway youth fashion brand” next year and counts facial moisturiser as a travel necessity.
But Kohli’s penchant for panache belies a teak-tough cricketer.
This is a bloke whose father died on a 2006 day at 3am. Kohli went out to bat the same day, making 90 in a Ranji Trophy match.
So, what if the likes of Warner don’t like him?
“I have come to terms with understanding myself and what works for my life and the kind of character and personality I have,” Kohli said.
“I don’t really worry about people say or write about me any more.
“I don’t make a big deal of performances or getting out either. So I’m getting to terms with how life goes on every single day.”
INDIANS TO SCORE TONS IN EACH INNINGS OF A TEST
Vijay Hazare (116 and 145 v Australia, 1948)
Sunil Gavaskar (124 and 220 v West Indies, 1971; 111 and 137 v Pakistan, 1978; 107 and 182no v West Indies, 1978)
Rahul Dravid (190 and 103no v Zimbabwe, 1997; 110 and 135 v Pakistan, 2005)
Virat Kohli (115 and 141 v Australia, 2014)