Virat Kohli cracked his second successive hundred of IPL 2023 when he made an unbeaten 101 against Gujarat Titans at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in a must-win match for the Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Twin hundreds one sealing victory
Kohli single-handedly guided Royal Challengers to a competitive 197 for 5 but it was not enough to stop the Titans from etching a 6-wicket win to knock the Bangalore side out of IPL 2023.
Shubman Gill smashed a wonderful unbeaten 52-ball 104 to trump Kohli and RCB on that night. Kohli, as we know him, would have easily traded that hundred for a team win.
Proving orthodox in an unorthodox format
But that setback notwithstanding, Kohli, through the knock, exhibited his brilliant all-format adaptability. His innings was no mere power-hitting as most of the modern T20 batsmen indulge in.
Kohli’s hundred was a validation of the fact that traditional skills like timing and finding gaps on the field still have a place in the shortest format.
Kohli’s 61-ball knock contained 13 fours and a single six, and the way he pierced the field was exceptional en route his second successive T20 of this year’s IPL, and only two more batters have achieved this feat — Shikhar Dhawan in 2020 and Jos Buttler in 2022.
Dont think my T20 game is declining
It was little wonder to hear Kohli talking about his enjoyment while batting in T20s. “A lot of people feel my T20 cricket is declining, but I don't feel like that at all. I feel I am playing my best again, enjoying myself and hitting gaps and big ones at the end.
“You have to rise to the occasion when the situation demands, and I take a lot of pride in doing it, and I've been doing it for a while now. I feel really good about my game right now,” Kohli told host broadcasters during the innings interval.
There has been a lot of social media talk about Kohli’s retirement from IPL since RCB’s 16th season ended without a title. But Kohli might just have given an assurance to his legion of fans about his presence in the red and gold jersey for a couple of more seasons.
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