Indian cricket icon Virat Kohli truly turned on a spectacle of batting as he and Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper Faf Du Plessis made light work of the 172-run chase against Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 match on Sunday. Du Plessis was named the player of the match for his 43-ball 73 but it was Kohli who ended up as RCB’s top-scoring batsman, scoring an unbeaten 82 off 49 balls to take the team over the line. As the match concluded, the cricketing world went ga-ga over Kohli’s performance, with Chris Gayle even predicting a season 2016-like show where the India batter nearly scored 1000 runs in the campaign.
Du Plessis’ departure in the 15th over didn’t see Kohli lose focus. The former RCB skipper completed the job, hitting a four and a six off Arshad Khan to knock off the winning runs to hand MI their 11th consecutive defeat in their first match of the season.
Reacting to his former RCB teammate’s performance, Chris Gayle said that Kohli is ‘hungry’ and this could only be the start of troubled times for the bowlers.
“I’m sure. There’s no pressure on Virat. We talked about him before the tournament, me and AB. AB said, ‘hey, he’s a bit hungry. There’s no pressure. And we have seen Virat in 2016. And this could be trouble for bowlers’. He got a brilliant start, 88 not out. There’s going to be carnage for bowlers in the days to come,” Gayle said on Jio Cinema.
“It will help a lot. Fans have a big part to play in this as well. We had a home game after 4 years, and you have to prove something to the home fans as well. They have to make sure they’re happy. .”
“Incredible hitting. First up, he plays on, the shot for me was one off Jofra Archer at mid-off. To me, that tells me that he’s incredibly well-balanced at the crease. A phenomenal knock, and a great partnership with skipper Faf du Plessis,” Finch said on Star Sports.
“He brings the energy. He’s a difficult guy to bowl to, because upfront, he doesn’t hurt you with hitting those big sixes, he plays some ball to the ground, knocks it around, hurts you with fours. So, it’s the Consistency that’s there. The partnership with Faf, he played the more aggressive role. He played the perfect game tonight,” said Kallis.
“The pull shot for six towards the end, it was a slower delivery. But he got to the position so quickly, and he just flicked it as he was flicking a fly. And it went deep,” Gavaskar, meanwhile, stated.
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