RCB batter Virat Kohli becomes fourth-highest run-scorer in T20 cricket

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BENGALURU: Star India and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) batter Virat Kohli became the fourth-highest run-scorer in T20 cricket on Monday.

Virat accomplished this feat during his side’s Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 match against Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) at M Chinnaswammy Stadium in Bengaluru.

In the match, vintage Virat was on full display as he scored 61 in just 45 balls. His knock consisted of four boundaries and four sixes and runs came at a strike rate of over 138.

The batter, in IPL 2023 so far, has scored 164 runs in three matches at an average of 82.00 and a strike rate of above 147 with two half-centuries. His best score in the tournament is 82*.

Since his T20 debut in 2007, Virat has evolved into a legend of this format. In 362 matches and 345 innings, he has scored 11,429 runs at an average of 41.11 and a strike rate of 133.17. He has scored six centuries and 86 half-centuries in the shorter format, with the best score of 122*.

Notably, Virat is the highest run-scorer in T20Is. He has scored 4,008 runs in 115 matches and 107 innings at an average of 52.73 and a strike rate of 137.96. He has scored one century and 37 half-centuries at the international level, with the best score of 122*.

The 34-year-old is also the highest run-scorer in IPL history, having scored 6,788 runs in 226 matches and 218 innings at an average of 36.69 and a strike rate of 129.54. He has five centuries and 46 half-centuries in the cash-rich league, with the best score of 113.

Coming to T20 cricket overall, the top five run scorers in the format are as follows: West Indies legend Chris Gayle (14,562 runs in 463 matches at an average of 36.22 and a strike rate of 144.75 with 22 centuries and 88 half-centuries and best score of 175*, which is the highest in the format), Pakistan’s Shoaib Malik (12,528 runs in 510 matches at an average of 36.00 and a strike rate of 127.55 and 77 fifties with the best score of 95*), former West Indies all-rounder Kieron Pollard (12,175 runs in 625 matches at an average of 31.29 and a strike rate of 150.51, one century and 58 fifties and best score of 104), Virat and former Australian batter Aaron Finch (11,392 runs in 382 matches at an average of 33.80 and a strike rate of 138.53, eight centuries and 77 fifties with the best score of 172).

Coming to the match, put to bat first by LSG, RCB posted a massive 212/2 in their 20 overs. Virat Kohli (61 off 45 balls, 4 boundaries and four sixes) provided a quick start in the powerplay with skipper Faf Du Plessis, forming a 96-run stand in 69 balls. From then onwards, the skipper picked up speed and formed a 115-run stand with Glenn Maxwell in just 50 balls.

Faf scored an unbeaten 79 off 46 balls, consisting of five fours and five sixes. Maxwell scored 59 off 29 balls, consisting of three fours and six sixes. Dinesh Karthik was unbeaten on 1.

Mark Wood (1/32) and Amit Mishra (1/18) were among the wickets for LSG. In the chase of 213 runs, LSG was off to a bad start as they were reduced to 23/3 in four overs. However, KL Rahul (18) and Marcus Stoinis had a game-changing 76-run stand for the fourth wicket. Stoinis scored a quick 65 off 30 balls, consisting of six fours and five sixes.

Nicholas Pooran upped the attack following KL and Stoinis’s dismissal, scoring 62 off just 19 balls with four boundaries and seven sixes. He formed a quick 84-run stand with Ayush Badoni, who scored 30 off 24 balls.

The equation came down to five runs in the final over bowled by Harshal Patel, who conceded a single on ball one, a wicket on ball two. A double and single were taken on balls three and four. Unadkat was dismissed on the penultimate ball, bringing down the equation to one run in a ball. Harshal attempted to run out Ravi Bishnoi from the non-strikers’ end but failed. The last ball was a bye and LSG clinched a thrilling one-wicket win.

Mohammed Siraj was the pick of the bowlers for RCB, taking 3/22 in four overs. Wayne Parnell also took 3/41 on his IPL return. Harshal got two scalps but gave away 48 runs in four overs. Karn Sharma took 1/48 in three overs.

With this win, LSG is the table topper with three wins and a loss in four games. They have a total of six points. RCB is in seventh position with a win and two losses in three games and a total of two points. Pooran won the ‘Player of the Match’ for his game-changing knock.

Brief score: Royal Challengers Bangalore 212/2 (Faf du Plessis 79*, Virat Kohli 61; Amit Mishra 1-18) vs Lucknow Super Giants 213/9 (Marcus Stoinis 65, Nicholas Pooran 62; Mohammed Siraj 3-22). (ANI)

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