(Image Credits: Royal Challengers Bengaluru)

Indian cricket team player Virat Kohli recently revealed that he knew about Sunil Chhetri’s decision to announce his international retirement before the Indian football team captain made it public.

Chhetri announced on Thursday that he would be stepping down from international football after the upcoming World Cup qualifier against Kuwait, which will take place in Kolkata on June 6. He shared this news across his social media platforms.

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Following Chhetri’s announcement, Kohli commented “My brother. PROUD,” on Instagram, showing his support for his friend's decision.

The duo shares a close friendship that has spanned many years, frequently expressing their admiration and support for each other on social media whenever possible.

On Friday, Kohli disclosed that he was aware of Chhetri’s decision beforehand and was not surprised by his close friend's choice to retire from international football.

“He’s a really dear friend,” Kohli revealed in an interview uploaded by Indian Premier League (IPL) side Royal Challengers Bangaluru. 

"He actually messaged me as well, informing me that he's going to do it. But I would say that he felt like he is at peace with the decision,” he said. 

Chhetri and Kohli were last spotted together during the 2023 edition of the IPL when Chhetri paid a visit to Royal Challengers Bengaluru’s M Chinnaswamy Stadium. The India football captain interacted with Kohli and other members of the squad, even participating in fielding and other activities with the team. Kohli revealed how close he has grown with Chhetri and congratulated him on his future endeavours.

"I have become very close with him over the years and I wish him nothing but the best. He is a lovely, lovely guy."

Last year, Chhetri revealed how he and Kohli maintain a close bond despite not staying in constant touch.

“We chat a lot of funny stuff. Having said that, some of the most deep and meaningful chats I have had is with him. We are not chuddy buddies. It’s not that we talk 24x7 everyday. There are phases where we don't talk for months,” he previously said in an episode of In The Stands