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Wednesday, Nov 20, 2019

India vs South Africa: An unlikely star - Numbers reveal Virat Kohli’s biggest trump card in powerplay overs

With Jasprit Bumrah rested, Virat Kohli has used Deepak Chahar and Washington Sundar in the powerplays and this has yielded rich dividends.

cricket Updated: Sep 22, 2019 09:07 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Indian captain Virat Kohli
Indian captain Virat Kohli(AP)
         

One of the biggest takeaways from the recent run of T20Is for India has been the emergence of a new ball combination. With Jasprit Bumrah rested, Virat Kohli has used Deepak Chahar and Washington Sundar in the powerplays and this has yielded rich dividends. While Chahar has been solid with his seam and swing, Washington has emerged as Kohli’s trump card in the first six overs.

In West Indies, he was a big threat to left-handers. Although, he could bag only two wickets in three matches, his economy rate was an impressive 4.75 rpo.

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“The composure he has shown after being away for so long, he has been outstanding to come back and do the job he used to do. He’s definitely going to be a big factor for us and is handy with the bat. He has become fitter, leaner and sharper in the field also. All in all, I think he’s in a good space and is executing what he wants to at the moment,” Kohli said in West Indies.

Hindustantimes

He has played in 11 matches, he has been used as a powerplay option in 10 matches.

o He has opened the bowling in 4 matches (i.e. bowled the 1st over for the team)

o He has bowled the 2nd over for the team in the other 6 matches.

Hindustantimes

If we compare his bowling numbers in the powerplay overs, he has the best bowling average for bowlers to have bowled a minimum of 20 overs in the first six overs since 2013. There is no Kuldeep and Chahal in the side as Virat Kohli wants to have a deep batting order. He is a solid batsman, but then is listed at number 8 which means he might not get too many opportunities to showcase his credentials with the willow.

However, with only 25 T20Is scheduled for India before the T20 World Cup, Washington is certainly making all the right noises with the ball. The management could well bump him up the order on few occasions to see how he goes with the bat as well.