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Why Virat Kohli is called Cheeku and other interesting stories about this ace cricketer

By Dhrubaa Ghosh,

Check out these fun (and true) stories about the captain of the Indian cricket team.

A role model for many because of his hard work and dedication, Kohli’s fun side has earned him the nickname “Cheeku.”

India Captain Virat Kohli is a celeb for cricket fans and youngsters all over the country. He is a role model for many because of his hard work, dedication and good performance. Beyond cricket, his famous wife, Anushka Sharma, the acclaimed Bollywood actress, keeps the couple in news all the time. Here are 3 funny but very real stories about Kohli.  

Why is Virat Kohli called ‘Cheeku’?

While speaking to former England cricketer Kevin Pietersen in an Instagram Live chat session, Kohli revealed how he got his nickname, much to the amusement of his host and audience. In 2007, young Kohli was gearing up to play the Ranji Trophy. He was a chubby boy with round cheeks. He thought he was going bald, so he cropped his hair really short, making his ears stand out. Kohli admitted he did look really funny. The coach decided to call him Cheeku, the name given to a rabbit character from the popular Champak animal cartoon series. The name caught on since M.S. Dhoni used to shout out ‘Cheeku’ instead of ‘Virat’ from behind the stumps while playing. So everyone knew the name. Now we also know its story.  

Virat Kohli failed to travel without a ticket in the bus 

In another interview, Kohli was asked whether he played pranks as a school kid such as traveling in the bus or train without a ticket. Kohli said he had tried, but failed. Some of his smarter friends managed to pass themselves off as staff member and travelled for free. He tried the same, but since he looked too young and just too nervous, the bus conductor started grilling him with questions. Scared, Kohli jumped off the bus and scampered away. He still feels he lacked confidence as a boy, so he could not pull this trick.  

Teenage Kohli and a funny young cricketer

While speaking on the talk show Breakfast with Champions, Virat Kohli remembered a funny young man from the time when they were all about to play a match for under-17 cricketers. Kohli was the Captain of the Delhi Team. In a club match, he met a new bowler. Kohli asked the bowler, 'from where?', implying the which end would he prefer to bowl from. Normally, one doesn't need to talk in full sentences in such instances on the field. The bowler was from Najafgarh, so he replied, ‘Najafgarh’. Amused hugely, Kohli asked him the same thing again, and the boy repeated the answer, to the delight of his team mates.  

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