Bangladesh skipper Mushfiqur Rahim had, on Wednesday, said how bowling in partnerships would be the key to stopping India. He also felt curbing Virat Kohli would mean checking India. (Day 1 highlights)
Once he reflects on Thursday’s play, he’d realise how far things were from expectations. (Scorecard)
The Bangladesh bowlers wilted. In fact, it was the India batsmen who batted in partnerships, putting at least 50 for every wicket except the first one.
Then, Kohli faced not even an ounce of trouble as he raced to his 16th century to lead India to a commanding position at the end of the first day’s play.
The India skipper is on the cusp of another record, breaking Virender Sehwag’s record for most runs in a home season.
He is just 30 short and has the entire Test as well as four others against Australia.
This is his fourth century this home season and over the last eight months, has scored five centuries. The record explains the trouble opposition teams have had.
Opener Murali Vijay testified. “It’s always a great sight to see Virat play, the way he is playing at the moment. He has taken his game to a different level.”
What stood out was Kohli’s confidence and pace at which he scored, literally toying with the Bangladesh attack. It was due to his impact that India racked up 150 runs in the last session, which helped them finish at 356. In the last session, he made 94 runs off 117 deliveries.
Kohli’s domination gave Rahane the space to settle down in his comeback match. Kohli had 66 and Rahane 34 when they reached the 100-run partnership mark.
“End of the day you can see we are 354 (356) and I thought we would be 340 (and that would) be great. The 10-20 runs extra happened because of him. The way he was striking the ball was fantastic.”
Vijay expects him to score more on Friday against the clueless Bangladesh bowlers.
Taskin Ahmed summed up the trouble of bowling to Kohli. “He is a great player. You can’t do much against a batsman who hits even good deliveries to the fence.”
The most eye-catching shot was the straight punch that went past the bowler. Kohli had just come in, but seemed he was seeing the ball like a football.