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The Passion of Kohli: Skipper’s 94* guides India to highest-ever T20I run chase

West Indies had set India an imposing target of 208 but Virat Kohli (94* off 50) and KL Rahul (62 off 40 balls) made the chase look like child's play in the 1st T20I in Hyderabad on Friday.

By: Sports Desk | Updated: December 7, 2019 2:30:23 am
India beat West Indies in the 1st T20I in Hyderabad on Friday (PTI Photo)

India beat West Indies by 6 wickets and 1.2 overs to spare in the 1st T20I in Hyderabad on Friday to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series. This is the highest T20I total successfully chased down by India. West Indies had set India an imposing target of 208 but Virat Kohli (94* off 50) and KL Rahul (62 off 40 balls) made the chase look like child’s play.

First Innings: West Indies scored 207/5 in their 20 overs, with India pacers and fielders alike suffering a bad day in the field. Washington Sundar and Rohit Sharma were responsible for two dropped catches each as the visitors blitzed their way to an imposing total. Deepak Chahar (1/56) registered the third most expensive bowling figures by an Indian in T20Is.

Also Read | Records broken in India vs WI 1st T20I: Kohli scales a high, Kesrick Williams hits a low

Evin Lewis (40 off 17 balls) and Brandon King (31 off 23 balls) gave the Windies innings momentum, which was carried forward into the later half of the innings by Shimron Hetmyer (56 off 41 balls), who scored his first T20I fifty, and Kieron Pollard (37 off 19 balls). Both Hetmyer and Pollard were dismissed by Yuzvendra Chahal in the 18th over, as India managed to pull back things somewhat at the end.

Second Innings: Rohit Sharma (8 off 10 balls) did not have a good day with the bat, but his opening partner KL Rahul (62 off 40 balls) and Virat Kohli (94* off 50 balls) ensured that India got off to their chase on the right note. The pair added 100 runs in 10 overs as India stayed in touch with the required run rate at all times.

However, it was after Rahul’s departure that Kohli came to life in the run chase – getting into duels, complaining to the umpire and imitating bowlers after smashing them for massive sixes.

Gamechanger: India were always in touch with the required run rate in their chase, despite facing a mountain of a run chase, but things exploded to life when Virat Kohli decided to take matters into his own hands in the last quarter of the second innings.

Also Read | How Virat Kohli turned a struggle into a carnage: India skipper paces run chase to perfection

From 54 needed off 30 balls, the match was suddenly over with 8 balls left, as Kohli entered into his highest gear – smashing sixes for fun and imitating bowlers as afterthoughts.

Brief Scores: West Indies 207/5 (20 overs) | India 209/4 (18.4 overs)

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