Mumbai: Star India batter Virat Kohli was caught playing football with legendary David Beckham ahead of India vs New Zealand semifinal in the ongoing ODI World Cup 2023 at the Wankhede Stadium on Wednesday, the picture of which went viral on social media. The incident took place when the Indian players were warming up with passing football during their pre-match training. Spotting Beckham nearby, Kohli passed the ball to the England legend, a moment that caught the attention of the whole crowd.
The 49-year-old former Beckham, who was accompanied by legendary Sachin Tendulkar, then met other Indian players like Mohammed Siraj, Suryakumar Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah and Ishan Kishan and had a brief chat with them. Kohli, Beckham and Tendulkar then caught up one more time on the sidelines before the start of the match, probably before both teams walked out for National Anthems.
Virat Kohli playing football with David Beckham at Wankhede. [Beckham Instagram story] pic.twitter.com/gid0TcKP5V
— Johns. (@CricCrazyJohns) November 15, 2023
It is no secret that Kohli loves football apart from cricket. He also owns Indian Super League side FC Goa. Meanwhile, Beckham who currently owns Inter Miami in Major League Soccer, a club that have Lionel Messi in their ranks, is watching his first cricket match in India.
Meanwhile, India skipper Rohit Sharma won the toss and elected to bat against New Zealand. Both India and New Zealand decided to go with the same playing XI that they fielded in their last league match. The 2011 champions India are on an unbeaten run, having won nine matches on the trot while two-time finalists New Zealand were the last team to qualify by finishing at the fourth place in the league stages.
India: Rohit Sharma(c), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul(w), Suryakumar Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Siraj
New Zealand: Devon Conway, Rachin Ravindra, Kane Williamson(c), Daryl Mitchell, Mark Chapman, Glenn Phillips, Tom Latham(w), Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Lockie Ferguson, Trent Boult.