What’s the story?
Legendary Pakistani batsman Younis Khan has shared Virat Kohli’s remarkable rise as an example for the younger players in his team. The 39-year old backed the Indian captain to surpass the iconic Sachin Tendulkar in the coming years. He also credited his incredible Test record to the support provided by family members as well as former coach Bob Woolmer.
Younis said, “I credit this success and achievement to all my family members, especially my late father, my mother and the late Bob Woolmer, who always motivated me. This is not just my achievement, this is for everyone in Pakistan. This is Pakistan's achievement.”
“I have tried my best to tell them everything - what to do, how to practice, what to do after at the match, what to do after scoring a hundred and what to do after scoring zero. So I am sure if I am not around, they will follow it to become successful.
“To score 10,000 runs, you have to make up your mind first. If you take an example of Virat Kohli after Sachin Tendulkar's retirement (in 2013), he went on with an aim and a goal. So I am sure in the coming years, he will surpass Sachin.”
During the third day of the opening Test against West Indies, Younis Khan completed the long-awaited landmark of 10,000 runs. A player of immense resolve, he fittingly brought up the milestone with his trademark fine sweep shot.
The heart of the matter
Upon making his Test debut against Sri Lanka at Rawalpindi in 2000, Younis steadily rose through the ranks to carve a place for himself in the pantheon of the game’s greats. He had already announced his decision to retire at the end of the West Indies series. When asked about the ability of his cope with the loss of him as well as veteran captain Misbah-ul-Haq, the stalwart insisted that transition periods are inevitable for any side.
Younis also revealed that he has been planning to get into coaching after finishing his playing career. Already a holder of Level 2 coaching certification, he hoped to work with Pakistan’s U-15 and U-19 sides in order to help produce quality cricketers.
Younis needs 88 more runs from 5 possible innings to overhaul the venerated Sunil Gavaskar’s tally of 10,122 runs and enter into the list of top 5 leading run-scorers from the subcontinent.
Younis’ tribute to the deceased Bob Woolmer speaks a lot about his character as a person. Hopefully, he gets into coaching after retirement for there cannot be a better role-model for young Pakistani aspirants. Even though Kohli has a long way to go before matching Tendulkar’s legacy in Test cricket, he should use Khan’s high praise as motivation and chase greatness.