Virat’s best sinks Pakistan
Royal Challengers Bangalore batsman Virat Kohli smashed a career best 183 off 148 balls as India chased their highest total to beat Pakistan by 6 wickets in their Asia Cup clash at Mirpur on Sunday.
India made a terrible start to the match after Pakistan chose to bat first, conceding 224 runs for the first wicket with both openers Mohammad Hafeez (105) and Nasir Jamshed (112) hitting tons.
Things could have turned worse when Kohli and Rohit Sharma had a terrible collision while fielding in the 38th over but thankfully the two didn't suffer any major blows.
Younis Khan chipped in with 52 but the bowling attack missing Vinay Kumar did well in the last 15 overs to restrict Pakistan to 329/6.
India’s trend of terrible starts continued as Hafeez had Gambhir dismissed LBW for a duck in the very first over. It was the most ahead Pakistan would get in the game.
Sachin Tendulkar (52) took charge from there with beautiful unburdened batting while Virat Kohli simply focused on running hard, overtaking his enroute their half centuries. Tendulkar added 133 runs for the second wicket with Kohli before departing with the score on 133 in 19.2 overs and bringing Rohit to the middle.
Sharma shook off his poor form while Kohli raced to his third hundred in four innings and his 11th overall in ODIs, getting there off 97 balls. He was respectful to Saeed Ajmal and Hafeez who were posing the most problems
The pacers and Shahid Afridi were plundered as Kohli chanced his muscles, producing some exquisite shots and cashed in as they wilted under pressure, reaching 150 in just 34 more balls. Rohit too joined in, hitting 68 off 83. The pair added 172 off 158 balls for the third wicket, Kohli adding 103 runs off 72 balls in the partnership before Rohit was out to Umar Gul in the 46th over.
Kohli eventually fell for 183 and walked back to a standing ovation after a top edge off Umar Gul only went as far as Hafeez at point, ending his knock. Suresh Raina and MS Dhoni knocked off the remaining 12 runs needed for the win in the next four balls as India completed their highest successful ODI chase with 13 balls remaining.
Virat’s knock is the highest individual score in an Asia Cup match, the highest individual score against Pakistan and made him the youngest Indian to hit a 150+ score in ODIs.
India’s passage to the final of the Asia Cup is still not secure as a Bangladesh win in their match against Sri Lanka on Tuesday could send them packing.