The star of modern-day cricket Virat Kohli turned 31 today. Fans on Twitter flooded the flamboyant cricketer with wishes making # HappyBirthdayViratKohli and # KingKohli trend.
Making this occasion special we take a trip down the memory lane to visit some of the memorable innings of Kholi’s career. Innings that set him a class apart and made him “King Kholi”. So, without much ado let’s get rolling.
133* Vs Sri Lanka At Hobart
This innings at Hobart was the defining moment that announced the arrival of Kholi in the real sense. Though he had scored centuries against Sri Lanka, Australia, Bangladesh, and New Zealand this came at a time when the situation was crunch.
Chasing 320 in 40 overs to stay in hunt in the triangular CB series India was in trouble at 86-2 having lost Sachin and Sehwag. Kohli showed his class and scored a brilliant 133* to get India home with a bonus point. The highlight of the innings was 24 runs of Malinga’s one over.
183 Vs Pakistan At Dhaka
India Vs Pakistan encounters are high on tension by nature. This one had an added layer of excitement and emotions as India faced a “must-win” situation in order to stay alive in the Asia Cup encounter (2012).
Just after a month of showcasing his brilliance in pressure run chases at Hobart Kholi was up against a Pakistani line-up that had likes of Saeed Ajmal, Umar Gul, and Wahab Riaz. Chasing 330 to win India had the worst possible start losing Gambhir in the very first over. Kohli made a mockery of the big chase with his 183 of 148 balls that had a total of 22 boundaries.
100* Vs Australia At Jaipur
This was a historic match for India. India managed to script its highest ODI run chase with ease (9 wickets win over Australia). Though Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan set the chase of 360 with a brilliant 176 opening stand Kohli made sure that India achieves the target with ease.
After the fall of Dhawan for 95, Kohli took the Aussie bowlers up for some hammering smashing 100 of just 52 balls. Kohli hit 7 sixes and 8 boundaries in his innings making 74% of his runs from big shots.
116 Vs Australia At Adelaide
If I say this one was the inning that showed the versatility, class, and talent of Kohli all in one then I would probably not be wrong. Though his innings came in a losing cause this was a defining page in Kholi’s career. The innings showed that he is a complete cricketer and not only a white-ball specialist.
On tricky Australian tracks, Kohli stood firm and provided some resistance to the Indian innings which was crumbling after Australia posted a mammoth 1st innings score of 604 on the back of Pointing and Clarke’s double ton.
82* Vs Australia At Mohali
Australia has been a favorite opponent of Kholi as many of his memorable knocks came against the Aussies. This came at a time when a spot in the semi-finals of the ICC World T20 was at stake.
Australia set a target of 161 for India in what is said to be a virtual quarter-final of the tournament. India were all guns down at 49/3 and were staring at defeat. Kohli took the task in his hand and steered India past finish line with 5 balls remaining. The innings has a special emotional connect for Kohli.