Virat Kohli played one of the all-time great white ball knocks against Pakistan in their first game of the 2022 T20 World Cup. But that wasn’t the first time he had played such a spectacular knock at this level. He has previously won many games single-handedly for India.
So, we have brought you the top 5 T20 Innings by Virat Kohli to date. Let’s check them one by one.
1) Against Pakistan In World Cup 2022
Despite all the talk about Kohli’s form and dropping strike rate, a match-winning knock was due for VK. But, the way he delivered, not many would have expected that.
India were set a target of 160 by their arch-rivals on an MCG pitch that had plenty of pace and bounce for the fast bowlers.
Kohli Took the Game Deep After India Stuttered Early
Naseem Shah and Haris Rauf were breathing fire at the start of India’s innings. Rohit, Rahul, and SYK were sent back to the pavilion inside the powerplay, and when Axar was run out in the 7th over, the score was just 31. After the completion of the first half of the innings, the Indians were reeling at 45 for 4, with 115 runs required in the last 10 overs.
As Pakistan were bossing the game, all eyes were on one man, and that man was Virat Kohli. He had fought his way to drive himself out of the fiery burst from the pacers. Then, he started to get going in the 12th over by smashing a six of Nawaz down the ground. From there, he kept India alive in the game by getting some timely boundaries.
However, Pakistani bowlers persisted with hard length and change-ups to keep Virat and Pandya in check. When the 17th over of the chase was completed, India still needed 48 runs of the last 18 balls, with Kohli still there at 46*(42). As Pandya struggled to find any timing and momentum, VK was the only hope for the Indian teams and fans.
An Unreal Finish from the Batting Maestro
Everybody knew that India were miles behind in the chase, and one decent over would seal the deal for Pakistan. Kohli didn’t allow that as he smashed 3 boundaries in the next over bowled by Shaheen, leaving 31 to get off the last 2 overs. The momentum was with India and Kohli, but Rauf was not going to make it easy, and his first 4 balls went for just 3 runs.
Pakistan were now in touching distance with the victory as they needed to defend 28 runs off the last 8 balls. That’s when the real VK magic started as he played two miraculous shots to hit the intangible Rauf for two massive sixes. The match was now hanging in the balance, but Nawaz removed Pandya on the first ball of the final over, and once again, everything depended on Kohli.
The following 2 balls went for just 3 runs, and the game again tilted in Pakistan’s favour. But Virat defied the odds again by hitting a six off a high full-toss (no ball). He was cleaned up on the free hit, but he was smart enough to run 3 as the ball deflected towards the third man boundary.
India won a thriller on the last ball of the 20th over, and Kohli finished at 82*(53). This innings will be remembered for a long time as Kohli’s greatest T20 knock – or maybe the greatest innings of his career.
2) Against Australia In World Cup 2016
Prior to the recent legendary knock of VK against Pakistan, his match-winning effort against Australia in the 2016 World Cup was hailed as his greatest T20 innings. It was effectively a knockout game as India were asked to chase 161 against the Aussies in Mohali.
Australians were on top in the 2nd innings after reducing India to 84 for 4 in 14 overs. Virat was batting at 35 of 30 at that time, and he decided to press the accelerator. He got to his half-century on 39 balls, but with 39 needed off the last 3 overs, the job was still half-done.
He brought India back into the contest by plundering 2 fours and a maximum of the first 3 balls of the 18th over. Then, the Chase Master killed the game by hitting 4 delightful boundaries in the next over.
Kohli’s splendid knock of 82*(51) saw India through to the World Cup semi-finals as he played one of the most remarkable T20 knocks.
3) Against Pakistan In Asia Cup 2016
There’s a famous saying, “When the going gets tough, the tough gets going.” There’s no better way to describe Virat’s gritty knock against Pakistan in Mirpur. On a highly challenging track for the batsmen, Pakistan were folded for just 83 runs, but Amir’s fiery spell set the stage on fire.
After picking up 2 wickets in the first 4 balls of the chase, Amir got his 3rd on the 4th ball of his 2nd over. India were reduced to 8 for 3, and Kohli survived a close LBW call of Amir’s bowling.
From that point, India’s run machine controlled the chase with a seamless batting display. His classy knock of 49 runs included 7 fours as India secured a 5-wicket win.
4) Against South Africa In World Cup 2016 Semi-Final
It was another one of Virat’s epic knocks in the T20 World Cups as he powered India to the finals of the event. While chasing 173 against South Africa, Kohli went past his 50 in just 35 balls.
However, 40 runs were still required in the last 4 overs as India’s hopes hinged on Virat. He didn’t disappoint his fans as he creamed a couple of boundaries in the 18th over bowled by Dale Steyn.
He ended the chase unbeaten on 72 off just 44 balls and finished the match in style by smashing another boundary against Steyn.
5) Against Afghanistan In Asia Cup 2022
What makes this innings one of VK’s greatest is the timing of this knock. India were out of the Asia Cup after two successive losses, and Virat’s rough patch was still a matter of discussion. Critics were talking about his fluency and claiming he could not get those big shots away.
Also, the wait for Kohli’s 71st hundred had prolonged to almost 3 years. But everything changed with that one innings against Afghanistan, where he bunted 122* off 61 balls with the help of 12 fours and 6 gigantic sixes.
This knock not only gave him his 71st ton but also assured the fans that his bad run of form was over and the old Virat – the KING – was back!