How Virat Kohli's record-breaking performances have ended in heart-breaking results | Crickit
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How Virat Kohli's record-breaking performances have ended in heart-breaking results

May 23, 2024 07:33 PM IST

Another tournament full of personal success for Virat Kohli, but the trophy continues to elude him.

Virat Kohli's whimsical run drew to a close after the Royal Challengers Bengaluru succumbed to a defeat against the Rajasthan Royals in the IPL 2024 eliminator on Wednesday. The Indian champion's spirited efforts had to face the desolation of defeat once again, shattering the hearts of millions of RCB supporters. Questions like 'Is RCB too reliant on Kohli? Does Bangalore choke in big matches?' have swarmed the cricketing nation once again. Reigning Orange Cap holder, the most runs scored this season, the first player to 8000 runs and what not, the side couldn’t have asked for a better version of run-machine Kohli to unfold. And yet, it wasn't enough.

Virat Kohli and his team have failed to land the knockout blow on more occasions than one can remember(PTI)
Virat Kohli and his team have failed to land the knockout blow on more occasions than one can remember(PTI)

But cricket is an 11-man game, isn't it? A swashbuckling ton or a five-wicket haul alone may not be enough to get the team through. That is how it has been for Kohli over the years, peaking at the right time but only ending in vain. His sparkling form throughout all the big tournaments he has played has often given glimpses of how the team may hardly break a sweat to lift the trophy. However, the end result has always been devastating.

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RCB's underwhelming performance against the Royals on Tuesday brought back memories of their campaign in 2016. The tournament saw Kohli unleashing top-form, scoring an all-time highest record of 973 runs which included 4 hundreds and 7 fifties. Yet the team failed to carve their name in the trophy after losing to the Sunrisers Hyderabad in a tantalisingly close final. The same clash saw Kohli once again doing his duty with a well-deserved fifty while chasing 208 runs, enough to see the Royal Challengers standing tall with just 69 runs required off 44 balls. However, the team couldn't manage to reach the scoreline after the Indian batter was dismissed as their formidable batting order crumbled miserably, leading to their defeat by eight runs.

Kohli's trailblazing performances have always witnessed a heartbreaking end in international tournaments too, let alone the Indian Premier League. The Indian star's consistency in the ICC tournaments might well be second to none but it hasn't landed him on any title in the last 10 years. His mind-boggling performances at the T20 World Cups in 2014 and 2016 saw him winning the Player of the Tournament in both editions, but the Indian team fell short once again.

In the 2014 T20 World Cup, where the Men in Blue reached the final against Sri Lanka, Kohli was the only batsman who had a hard-fought battle with the bat where he scored 77 runs off 58 balls while the other batsmen struggled terribly. Ultimately, the team couldn't manage to get past 130 runs which their opponents chased in a jiffy.

One heartbreak after the other

The scenario was no different in the 2016 edition, where Kohli scored 273 runs in five innings. As India locked horns with West Indies in the semi-final, he rose to the occasion once again by registering his then-highest score of 89 as he safeguarded the team to a healthy total of 192. However, a below-average performance by the bowlers made the challenging total look relatively simpler for the Windies, so much so that Kohli had to step into his bowling shoes but couldn't manage to take his team to the final.

The stage looked set for one more time as India contested the ODI World Cup 2023 on home soil. The Indian star would peak yet again with 765 runs in 11 innings which included 3 hundreds and 6 fifties. The Trophy seemed to come home as India reached the final undefeated. Kohli proved his batting prowess again by scoring a fighting fifty in the summit clash. However, the match was another nightmare for the batting order as the team was bundled out for 240. While the defence looked believable, the bowling unit could once again be no match to Australia, as India lost yet another final and endured another gut-wrenching end to Kohli's sensational performance.

A year before, the T20 World Cup in Australia witnessed a similar pattern unfolding. Despite blasting 272 runs, including that once-in-a-lifetime knock of 82 not out against Pakistan, all India could finish was, once again, a semi-final finish.

What has evidently been insufficient for the Indian luminary is the lack of cushion which the other men in the eleven have failed to provide. Kohli possessed an outstanding ability to bat, the run machine can only provide aid in runs to the furthest extent, while the onus of adding to the total and defending it also lies on the other players of the team.

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Stay updated with the latest cricket news, T20 World Cup 2024 updates and match highlights. Explore the World Cup Schedule 2024, IND vs USA Live Score track the World Cup Points Table, follow Virat Kohli's performance, and stay ahead with the stats on World Cup Most Wickets and World Cup Most Runs on the Hindustan Times website and app.

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