After nearly three years of not scoring a century, finally in Thursday’s T-20I match, which was between India and Afghanistan, Virat Kohli’s jinx got broken and he scored his 71st international century. In what was arguably Kohli’s most difficult format, the former captain smashed 122 runs off 61 balls. Kohli broke Rohit Sharma’s record for the highest score in a T20I by an Indian batter.
Kohli himself seemed surprised by that century, and as he celebrated, the camera panned to an elderly fan who proceeded to bow down to the 33-year-old in the stands in Dubai. Kohli reached the three figure mark with a four and a six off back-to-back balls.
His struggling strike rate for India and in the IPL in recent months has led to suggestions that he could be dropped from the T-20 World Cup if he doesn’t perform well in the Asia Cup.
After his innings, Kohli said, “Actually I was shocked. This is the last format, I thought. It was an accumulation of a lot of things. The team has been open and helpful. I know there was a lot of stuff going on outside.”
Kohli later said in the post-match presentation ceremony, where he won the player of the match award, that he didn’t want to prove anything to anyone. He said, “I wasn’t desperate to prove anything to anyone-in a very real sense, not in a way that ‘I’ve done everything’-it’s just about enjoying the game, understanding what God has blessed you with already, and then just being humble and going out there and doing the grind all over again. I think today was just a build up of the last few games-I actually batted out of my skin to be honest. I surprised myself. What actually surprised me was that my 60s became failures, which was very shocking for me. I was batting pretty well and contributing, but it didn’t seem to be good enough. But as I said, God has blessed me with a lot of good times in the past, and that’s why I’m in this position where these things can be spoken about. I have absolutely no shame in admitting that God is blessing us all with everything in our destiny. We just have to work hard. So I went back to the drawing board, came back fresh, came back excited. “