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King Kohli strikes again, registers record-breaking century in IPL
- Virat Kohli scored a second straight hundred in IPL 2023
- He scored an unbeaten 101 vs Gujarat Titans
- RCB set GT a target of 198 in their must-win encounter
Virat Kohli on Sunday grabbed a special record in the Indian Premier League (IPL) as he scored an unbeaten century.
Kohli remained not out on 101 off 61 deliveries for Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in their must-win game against Gujarat Titans (GT). With that, Kohli took his centuries tally in IPL to seven – the most in the history of the tournament.
Kohli: I'm playing my best T20 cricket again
The former RCB captain, who also holds the record for most runs in the IPL, was previously tied with ex-RCB teammate Chris Gayle with six hundreds each. Kohli’s hundred against GT at Chinnaswamy Stadium on Sunday was also his second straight ton in the ongoing IPL season. He scored a 63-ball 100 in RCB’s successful chase against Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) earlier this week.
At the innings break, Kohli stated that while many may believe that his T20 batting his declining, according to him, he is playing his “best T20 cricket again.”
“I felt great. Lot of people think that my T20 cricket is declining, I don't feel like that at all. I think I am playing my best T20 cricket again. I'm just enjoying myself. This is how I play T20 cricket, I look to hit gaps, hit a lot of boundaries and then the big ones towards the end if the situation allows me to. You have to read situations and rise up to the occasion when the situation demands. I feel really good with my game at the moment and how I'm batting,” the former RCB skipper added.
Kohli, along with Anuj Rawat, put up 64 runs for the sixth wicket and led RCB to 197 in 20 overs.
“We would have taken that with both hands once we were five wickets down through the middle overs with Anuj as the last recognised batsman left. We pretty much pulled things back nicely towards the end. We targeted 190 when we lost five, but getting close to 200 is a very competitive score and a winnable score for me.
“Teams have not been able to chase here in the recent past. It's upon the bowlers now to execute the plans and have a crack at them. Spin wasn't easy to get away. There's enough in this pitch for our bowlers to make a dent through the innings. What matters is to stay in the present in these kind of situations. I wasn't focusing on the rain, I was just focused on what I need to do for the team. Now we've got ourselves in a great position to defend this,” said Kohli.
On the back of two back-to-back hundreds, Kohli has climbed to second place in the Orange Cap race in IPL 2023. He has scored 639 runs in 14 matches at an average of 53.25 and strike-rate of 139.82. The underway campaign is the third season in the IPL where Kohli has scored 600 or more runs, becoming only the fifth batter to do so. While he is tied with Gayle, David Warner, and Faf du Plessis with three seasons of 600 or more runs, Rahul is the only batter to have achieved those numbers in four seasons (2018, 2020, 2021, and 2022).
Other than IPL 2023, Kohli’s season of 600 or more runs was 2013 and 2016. In fact, IPL 2016 was incredibly special for the former India captain as he ended with 973 runs, which still remains the record for the most runs scored in a single season of IPL.
In the ongoing IPL 2023, RCB captain Faf du Plessis is at the top of the table with 730 runs, ahead of teammate Kohli (639 runs) and Rajasthan Royals’ Yashasvi Jaiswal (625 runs).