Virat Kohli’s Popularity In Pakistan At Par With Dilip Kumar, Shah Rukh Khan: Ex-Pak Cricketer


Virat Kohli is widely regarded as the one of the best batters in modern-day cricket. Some even put him in the list of all-time greats, even though he has a few good years of cricket left in him. Given his performance on the field and what he has managed to achieve for India in international cricket, it is no wonder that he has fans all around the globe.

And now a former Pakistan cricketer Rashid Latif has said that Kohli is perhaps as popular in Pakistan as Dilip Kumar and Shah Rukh Khan. 

“The day Virat plays in Lahore, Karachi, Rawalpindi or in Multan, only then you guys will understand his craze in Pakistan,” former Pakistan captain Azhar Ali told The Indian Express.

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“You won’t believe but the stadium will be filled with green jerseys, magar peeche naam Babar ya Shaheen ka nahi, Virat ka hoga aur No 18 ke saath (but the name on the backs won’t be Babar Azam or Shaheen Shah Afridi, it will Virat Kohli’s along with his jersey No 18).”

Sunil Gavaskar Became A Cult In Pakistan: Latif

The former cricketer said that Kohli is not the first to enjoy such popularity in Pakistan and listed out examples from Sunil Gavaskar to MS Dhoni.

“It’s not like that Virat is the first one with such a big fan base in Pakistan,” said Latif in the same interview to the aforementioned publication.

“If you go back, Dilip Kumar had a massive fan following in Pakistan. Sunil Gavaskar became a cult in Pakistan. Young batsmen were told to copy Gavaskar saab’s technique. Then Amitabh Bachchan’s ‘angry young man’ movies used to get sold out. Then came Kapil Dev, Sachin Tendulkar, Shah Rukh Khan, MS Dhoni. When Dhoni came here his long locks became a trend.”

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Arch-rivals India and Pakistan are all set to meet in the T20 World Cup 2024 at the Nassau County International Cricket Stadium in New York on June 9.

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