Virat Kohli powers India to record T20I chase against West Indies in Hyderabad
India captain Virat Kohli led his side to a thumping six-wicket win in the first T20I against West Indies on Friday at Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad. Kohli hammered an unbeaten 94 as the ‘Men in Blue’ chased down the mammoth total of 207 set by the opposition with eight balls to spare. Doing so, India registered their highest successful T20I chase ever. Their previous best was when they had chased down 206 against Sri Lanka in 2009.
India also became the first team in history to chase down 200+ totals thrice. This is also the 2nd highest T20I total chased in India, just below England’s chase of 230 against South Africa during 2016 T20I World Cup.
Kohli got off to a slow start initially in the match, but he found his groove after he hammered Jason Holder for a six in the 13th over. “All the young batsman watching don’t follow the first half of my batting. That was too bad and I was trying to hit too hard. I started to get going after that over from Jason,” he said after being awarded the man of the match for his performance.
In his innings, Kohli struck 6 sixes and 6 fours, and despite wickets falling on the other end, he maintained his composure to see the match through. This is Kohli’s highest individual score in T20Is, surpassing his previous best of 90.
“I analysed what went wrong and played accordingly in the second half of my innings. Whenever I play T20 cricket I am not someone who comes to the ground to hit the ball in the air to entertain the crowd. I focus on doing the job. I don’t have to change much for formats. I just want to contribute in all three formats, that’s what I want to do,” the Indian skipper said after the match.
He further added: “When you are chasing a big total, there are a lot of distractions with the scoreboard pressure. But after a few dots, the game puts you in a position where you just have to hold your shape and play the shots.”