The latest issue of Wisden Cricket Monthly, out August 30, features a rare and exclusive one-to-one interview with Virat Kohli, as India’s captain sits down with Jo Harman to discuss his first 10 years as an international cricketer, what life outside of the game looks like for a 21st-century deity and the future of “the most beautiful format”.
In a wide-ranging conversation, Kohli also makes his feelings clear on the ECB’s proposed 100-ball competition (“I cannot think of one more format”) and reflects on the mistakes he made earlier in his career (“I really laugh at a lot of the things I did when I was younger”).
Elsewhere, we reveal the top 25 young women’s cricketers in the world, Felix White speaks to a batch of former England spinners about their first experience of international cricket and their unique place in the fabric of the English game, and John Stern visits New Road to learn the secrets of Worcestershire’s much-envied production line of young talent.
We also speak to Alec Stewart about Surrey’s bid to win a first Championship title since 2002, columnist Jonathan Liew spares a thought for a lost generation of English batting talent, Katherine Brunt tells us cricket was her escape from being bullied and Kumar Sangakkara waxes lyrical on the diminutive Sri Lankan genius, Aravinda de Silva.
Wisden Cricket Monthly is also available in digital form. You can purchase single issues or sign up for a subscription here.
10 standout quotes from the new issue:
“I really laugh at a lot of the things I did when I was younger but I’m proud that I did not change my ways because I was always going to be who I am and not change for the world or for anyone else.”
Virat Kohli speaks openly in an exclusive interview
“He eschewed all wide ones, rejected all tempters. His forward-blocks were comically exaggerated. He pulled his punches, left it alone. Finally, after well over three hours, the new ball got him. Ben Stokes trudged off, his face obscured by his half-removed helmet. The body seemed to decompress. August was over.”
In his Editor’s Notes, Phil Walker on a month that Ben Stokes will never forget
“It’s hard to credit how James Hildreth has remained unheeded. He’s scored big runs, quick runs, pretty runs, ugly runs, match-saving runs, match-winning runs. He’s averaged 57 for the Lions. And he’s been doing it, pretty much uninterrupted, for 15 years.”
Jonathan Liew on the perennially overlooked Somerset run-machine and the unfulfilled ‘copper generation’ of English batsmen of which he is part
“After the injury I’ve changed quite a bit, as a player and as a human being.”
Indian opener Smriti Mandhana features in our rundown of the best young women’s cricketers in the world
“John Morris knew this bloke who had a double decker boat. I don’t think he necessarily knew too much about the laws of the sea, though.”
Phil Tufnell reveals his near-death experience on the Pacific Ocean
“School was horrific. I’d be bullied, more mentally than physically. It was tearing me down. So it was like, where do I fit in? What do I do? These kids at Barnsley Cricket Club accepted me. It became my place. I felt like I belonged.”
England fast bowler Katherine Brunt on finding acceptance in cricket
“I’ve known the club all my life. I think I know how it works, I know what the expectations are from up above. So when they asked me to come back, I said, ‘Only on the understanding that you allow me the freedom to put in place what I believe is the right way. If it works, you can pat me on the back. If it doesn’t, kick me out’.”
Alec Stewart on his mission of bringing the good times back to Surrey
“My first Test wicket was Sachin Tendulkar. I couldn’t believe it. I didn’t even want to get him out, I just wanted to be in the same room as him.”
Monty Panesar recalls his Test debut as part of Felix White’s feature on the challenges of bowling spin for England
“Aravinda was one of the first subcontinental batsmen to make playing the short ball look ridiculously easy. That was the hallmark of his cricket, the ability to pull the ball from any length, to any part of the leg-side starting from mid-wicket to fine-leg, and he could exploit any gap. He was completely unafraid of being bounced out.”
Aravinda de Silva is Kumar Sangakkara’s next ‘Titan of Cricket’
“We’ve tried to create an environment with good people who are prepared to work hard and genuinely care. We will make cricketers as good as they can be. The chief executive wants this to be somewhere people want to be rather than buying people’s loyalty.”
Elliot Wilson, Worcestershire academy director, talks to John Stern about the club’s conveyor belt of talent
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