BENGALURU: Pumped up after an unprecedented seventh IPL
hundred, Virat Kohli
on Sunday took a dig at his critics who felt that he was all but over as a T20 batter, saying he is playing some of his best cricket in the shortest format.
Kohli, whose strike-rate and batting against spin in the middle overs has often been questioned, has now scored back-to-back hundreds against Sunrisers Hyderabad and Gujarat Titans, taking him atop the list of highest number of century makers in the cash-rich league.
“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,” Kohli said during a snap interview with the BCCI’s ‘world feed’ after his 61-ball 101 not out in a must-win final league game for RCB.
“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,” said Kohli, who is closing in on 12,000 career T20 runs.
Virat Kohli’s record 7 centuries in the IPL
<p>With his century against Gujarat Titans in IPL 2023, RCB icon Virat Kohli surpassed Gayle’s record of 6 centuries and became the leading century hitter in the tournament, which was exclusively in Chris Gayle’s name earlier.(Photo: BCCI/IPL)</p>
<p>Kohli’s 101* off 61 balls against the defending champions Gujarat Titans was Kohli’s record 7th hundred in IPL history. (Photo: BCCI/IPL)<br /></p>
<p>Of the 7 centuries in his IPL career so far, Virat scored four in the 2016 season alone<br /></p>
<p>His maiden IPL ton (100 not out off 63 balls) came against Gujarat Lions in Rajkot on 24 April 2016 (Photo: BCCI/IPL)<br /></p>
<p>Virat then scored 108 not out off 58 balls against Rising Pune Supergiants in Bengaluru on 7 May 2016 (Photo: BCCI/IPL)<br /></p>
<p>A week later, Virat scored his third IPL ton, against Gujarat Lions in Bengaluru, on 14 May 2016, when he hammered 109 off 55 balls (Photo: BCCI/IPL)<br /></p>
<p>On 18 May 2016, Virat’s fourth century in the IPL, 113 off 50 balls, came against Kings XI Punjab in Bengaluru (Photo: BCCI/IPL)<br /></p>
<p>Virat’s fifth IPL ton came three years later, on 19 April 2019, when he smashed 100 off 58 balls against KKR in Kolkata (Photo: BCCI/IPL)<br /></p>
<p>It took four years for Virat to score his sixth century, which could prove to be the one that takes RCB to the IPL 2023 playoffs (Photo: BCCI/IPL)<br /></p>
<p>In the game against GT, Kohli went on to break Gayle’s tally of 6 centuries and went on to become the leading century hitter in history. Kohli scored 101* off 61 balls at a strike rate of 165.57 with 13 boundaries and a six.</p>
“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,” said the man, who now has 639 runs and is second in this year’s run-getters’ list behind his skipper Faf du Plessis (730 runs).
Kohli said that he didn’t think about the threat of rain looming over the match.
“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,” he said.