The first Test match between India and Sri Lanka begins on Friday (March 4) at the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) stadium in Mohali, and it will be a historic occasion for Team India, as ex-captain Virat Kohli will play his 100th Test match.
Virat Kohli will join Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman, Anil Kumble, Kapil Dev, Sunil Gavaskar, Dilip Vengsarkar, Sourav Ganguly, Ishant Sharma, Harbhajan Singh, and Virender Sehwag as the only Indians to achieve the feat.
Virat Kohli signs autographs for young fans
Virat Kohli joined other players already present at the stadium, including Rishabh Pant, R Ashwin, Umesh Yadav, Jayant Yadav, Hanuma Vihari, Mohammed Shami, and Shubhman Gill, for a practice session. He heard young fans outside an entry gate asking for his autographs on their jerseys as soon as he arrived at the batting nets.
Kohli told a security guard to bring their shirts saying, “Paji, ehna to shirts le lo.”
Despite not having the opportunity to meet him, fans were overjoyed to receive Kohli’s autograph.
“I had never thought that I would get his autograph. He was kind to listen to our request,” said Aslam who came from Chandigarh on a bicycle.
Another youngster Sahil said, “He heard us requesting for an autograph. I was keen on meeting him, but his autograph will work too.”
The players went through batting nets after a brief warm-up session. Kohli’s 100th Test match will be held behind closed doors, according to PCA officials, because the BCCI will not allow any spectators.
For the three-match T20I against Sri Lanka, Kohli and Rishabh Pant were rested and given a bio-bubble break. Hanuma Vihari, Mohammed Shami, Ravichandran Ashwin, Shubman Gill, Umesh Yadav, and Jayant Yadav are among the Test specialists in Mohali. Following the first Test in Mohali, the two teams will travel to Bengaluru for the second and final game of the series, which will take place on March 12th and will be a day-night Test.