Seldom does an individual blend dedication and grit to epitomise the facet named perfection in the most beautiful way. Each time we see 30-year-old Virat Kohli step on to the cricket field, it’s like the team’s national crest has been inscribed on his chest, and it wouldn’t be wrong to say that in his eleven-year journey through international cricket, the greatest statistician would have found it challenging to keep up with Kohli’s remarkable performance.

And he has been able to lead men’s cricket in India remarkably well, setting an example for the generations to come.

On August 18, 2008, opening the innings against Sri Lanka at Dambulla with his Delhi counterpart Gautam Gambhir, Kohli managed 12 before being sent back. He experienced some nervous moments in this debut encounter which eventually turned out to be quite forgettable, but eventually he came into his own and lived up to the hype after leading India to their second Under-19 World Cup title.

Soon after, in his fourth international innings, he scored a maiden half-century but had to wait for 10 more innings to hit a century. The rest, as they say, is history.

Ever since he made his debut as a teenager Kohli has become India’s most trusted batsman across the formats, and is fast building a reputation as a fiercely aggressive captain. While Kohli, the batsman, has proved his credentials with a flurry of record-breaking innings over the past decade, Kohli the captain is still a work in progress.

He has peeled off centuries with ridiculous ease. In the list of most hundreds in ODIs, he is second only to Sachin Tendulkar. With 43 tons already, Kohli is in the driving seat to overtake Tendulkar’s record of 49 centuries, and before we mark his twelfth anniversary Virat Kohli will certainly have surpassed the legend if he continues to rule the bowlers as he has done.

In 2013, he scored an ODI century in just 52 deliveries – the fastest by an Indian in the format. He also holds the record for being the fastest to 8,000 runs and 9,000 runs in ODI cricket.

To date, in 239 ODIs, Kohli has scored 11,520 runs at an astonishing average of 60.31 – which is the most by any playing cricketer. At 30, he is the chase-master and will certainly remain synonymous with chasing targets in the future.

His prolific run scoring isn’t limited to ODIs. In tests too he holds a host of records, including being the first Indian captain to hit a double century overseas. After taking over the reins of the Indian test team Kohli scored three centuries in his first three innings as captain – the first to do so. And in 2017 he scored 11 centuries – the most by a captain in a calendar year – and claimed the award for ICC Cricketer of the Year.

He has 6,613 runs in 77 tests so far, with 25 centuries and 20 fifties. And in T20Is he has hit 2369 runs in 70 matches with 21 fifties.

In all, Virat Kohli has amassed 20,502 runs, 68 centuries and 85 half-centuries in his 11-year career, and still only 30 he is already considered a legend of the game.

Commentators around the globe have named the star sensation King Kohli, and each time he takes the guard to represent the national team, he shows why he has been awarded that name.

He has redefined the dynamics of cricket in India in the last 11 years, and will without an inch of doubt finish as one of the finest players the game has ever produced. Let’s hope that day is a long time coming!