11-Year Challenge: Fiery Virat meets cool Kane, again They grew in stature and spread their wings in international cricket together but rival captains Virat Kohli and Kane Williamson could never have imagined leading their sides in another World Cup semi-final, this time the senior one. The photos of 18-year-olds Kohli and Williamson prior to the U-19 World Cup semi-final in 2008, was released by the ICC and it immediately went viral. One thing that unites them is the mutual respect that champions have for each other as they fondly recollected their journey. “It’s not even 2008, I remember 2007 we went to New Zealand and we were playing an U19 Test match and he (Williamson) played a shot off one of our fast bowlers, who was quick, off the back foot,” Kohli remembered. “I remember standing in slips and telling another guy, ‘I have never seen anyone play a shot like that’ and he was special. “He was always that stand-out player and had special ability to go all the way and he’s a lovely guy. We get along very well,” the Indian captain said, terming his opposite number and Ross Taylor as main players in rival ranks. Williamson, on his part, felt that he always knew that Kohli was destined for success. “He was a formidable player, growing up — that seems odd to say because we were at the same age playing against each other on a number of occasions and then to go into international cricket at a youngish age, then IPL and these different sorts of things,” the Black Caps captain said. “So it’s obviously been a pleasure watching Virat play and evolve into the superstar that he is.” When reminded that Kohli had dismissed Williamson in that World Cup semi-final with his awkward seam-up stuff, both had a hearty laugh. “I got Kane’s wicket? Did I? I don’t know if that can happen again now,” Kohli said as everyone started laughing. Williamson’s reaction was even more humourous. “Oh dear. Tell me how (laughter). He used to be an all-rounder I think back in the day, but hasn’t bowled as much recently,” he said. “Actually, I’ll remind Kane also. It is quite a nice thing to realise that after 11 years we are captaining our respective nations again in a senior World Cup from U19,” Kohli said. ——————————————————————————————————————————- Weather or not The English weather is known to be fickle. It may rain the moment after it is bright and sunny. Already four matches in this World Cup have been abandoned. As a result, for the knockout stages, the ICC has reserve days in place. The apex cricketing body has released information regarding reserve days for the final three games. A reserve day is required if the match officials decide that the ground and pitch conditions are not suitable for play to continue on the scheduled match day. It aims to finish the match on the scheduled date even if it requires shortening the match up to 20-overs per side or extending the match up to 120 minutes. If there is still no result on the scheduled match day, then the play goes on the reserve day. If weather doesn’t relent on the reserve day, a super over is used to determine the winner. If even super over isn’t possible then the higher-placed side proceeds to the final. In case of a complete washout of the final i.e. no play either on the scheduled day or on the reserve day, then the trophy gets shared between the two finalists.