What got Virat Kohli, Novak Djokovic ‘texting’ each other?


Kohli admires Djokovic’s passion for fitness, looks forward to meet with Tennis ace if duo happen to be in same country at some point

Kohli dearly follows Djokovic’s passion for fitness. — Virat Kohli/Instagram/ Reuters/File

It is often said that “game recognises game”, and Indian star batter Virat Kohli’s interaction — although a virtual one — with acclaimed Tennis player Novak Djokovic reflects this in its true sense.

A recent video released by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), sheds light on Kohli’s relationship with the Serbian player which was initiated after the 35-year-old cricketer decided to text the Tennis player, but to his surprise, he discovered that Djokovic had sent him a direct message (DM) already.

Speaking on how his virtual interaction with the Tennis ace started, Kohli said: “I got in touch with Djokovic very organically. I was just looking at his Instagram profile once and just happened to press the ‘message’ button. I thought I would say ‘Hello’ [to him].”

“[However], I saw a message from him on my DM already. I [had] never opened it myself [before],” Kohli said.

“The first time I saw my own messages, I saw that he had messaged me himself. Then I was like, let’s check if it is a fake account or not. But then I checked it and it was a legitimate [account]. Then we started talking, exchanging messages every now and then. I would congratulate him on all of his fantastic achievements,” the 2023 ODI World Cup player of the tournament added.

Kohli said that the two of them share a lot of mutual respect and admiration before recalling how he received a personal message from the tennis ace on his 50th ODI century.

“There has been mutual admiration and respect. It is nice to connect with global athletes who are excelling at a high level. Collectively, it is sending out a message of inspiration to the next generation in a way.

“I have a lot of respect for him and his journey, his passion for fitness is something I follow and believe in myself. So there is a lot to connect on. Hopefully, when he comes to India or if I happen to be in a country where he is playing, I will catch up with him and just chill out and have a cup of coffee,” the Indian batter added.

Previously, while speaking on Sony Sports Network, Djokovic disclosed that over the past few years, despite not meeting in person, the pair have stayed in touch through text messages.

“Kohli and I have been texting a bit for a few years. We never got a chance to meet in person, but it was really an honour and a privilege to hear him speak nicely about me. I obviously admire all of his career and achievements. I started to play cricket, but I’m not very good at it. But I have a task to perfect my cricket skills before I come to India, and don’t embarrass myself when I’m there.”

“I have been feeling the love from India for many years. I’ve been to India only once, 10-11 years ago, to play an exhibition tennis match in New Delhi, so I hope I’ll be able to come back in the near future. I have a great desire to explore your beautiful country that has so much history and culture to offer to the world,” Djokovic said. 



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