India ‘s captain Virat Kohli has said in a surprising revelation that he once struggled to find a place in a Delhi junior team because his father did not want to pay a bribe.
“In my home state (Delhi) … sometimes things happen that aren’t fair … On one occasion, when it came to selection criteria, a certain person didn’t play by the rules. He told my father that while I had the merit, I needed a little extra (bribe) to validate my selection,” Kohli said in a web chat with Indian football captain Sunil Chhetri.
Kohli said that his father was an honest middle-class man who had worked hard to achieve something in life and he never knew what that ‘little extra’ meant. My father simply said, ‘If you want to select Virat, then let it be purely on merit. I will give you nothing extra’,” Kohli said.
“I wasn’t chosen. I was crying a lot. I was shattered,” Kohli recalled.
Then India ‘s captain went on to describe what he learned from the encounter, Kohli said, “The incident taught me a lot. I understood that this world is going on like this. If you want to succeed, do something that no one else is doing. I had to be exceptional if I wanted to be good, and I had to do it solely through my own initiative and hard work.
Notably, Kohli’s father died in 2006 when the Indian skipper was playing Delhi’s Ranji Trophy match against Karnataka. Kohli, who was just 18 at the time, went to the ground the next morning after his father’s demise and played a splendid Delhi innings.
“I accepted his death as I concentrated on going on with my career. Actually, the day after he died, I went and batted in a Ranji Trophy match. His death made me realize that I needed to make more of my life. Now, I think how good it would be if I could have given my father the happy retirement life he deserved. I still get emotional thinking about him,” Kohli said.