Virat Kohli Has Overtaken Lionel Messi In This Forbes List

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India captain Virat Kohli has a lot of things going for him at the moment. The 28-year-old has showcased remarkable batting consistency and astute leadership in all three formats of the game. Kohli not only has a vision for Indian cricket but has also been able to implement measures within the team to achieve it. From showcasing an aggressive brand of cricket to a drastic improvement in fitness levels of players, Kohli's stamp is all over the current Indian cricket set up. Kohli is not just the most marketable athlete in India but the face of cricket globally.

 

In a sense, Kohli's popularity and power have been captured in the latest list of the world's most valuable athletes released by Forbes on Wednesday. The brand value of athletes is their earnings (excluding salary and bonus from their sport and all investment income), minus the average income of the top 10 athletes in the same sport.

Kohli's brand value is higher than football legend Lionel Messi, golf superstar Rory McIlroy and Golden State Warriors' Stephen Curry. Roger Federer tops the list, while Cristiano Ronaldo features at the number four spot.

Top 10 most valuable athletes

1. Roger Federer $37.2m

2. LeBron James $33.4m

3. Usain Bolt $27m

4. Cristiano Ronaldo $21.5m

5. Phil Mickelson $19.6m

6. Tiger Woods $16.6m

7. Virat Kohli $14.5m

8. Rory McIlroy $13.6m

9. Lionel Messi $13.5m

10. Steph Curry $13.4m

The star batsman has been on a record-breaking run in recent time. In the 1st ODI against New Zealand, Kohli smashed a brilliant hundred at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai to become the second-highest century-maker in One-day International cricket. With his 31st ODI ton, he went past Ricky Ponting and is now just behind Sachin Tendulkar, who has 49 ODI centuries.

After his 29-run knock, Kohli became the highest run scorer in ODIs in 2017, overtaking South Africa's Hashim Amla.

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