Virat Kohli: The master of the chase

From the early days of his international career, Virat Kohli has shown his excellence as a chase artist.

updated: March 20, 2012 11:16 IST
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Mirpur: "I really like playing on this ground," Virat Kohli had said earlier this week, after being named Man of the Match for his 108 against Sri Lanka. On Sunday, he added another compelling reason for him to love the Shere Bangla National Stadium. His 183 against a top-quality Pakistan attack, in a high-pressure match in front of a packed house, was his fourth hundred at the venue. It also orchestrated India's largest successful ODI pursuit, and underlined his credentials as a master of the chase.

From the early days of his international career, he has shown his excellence as a chase artist. His first ODI century came in a little-remembered series of the many against Sri Lanka in recent years, stabilising India after the early loss of Virender Sehwag and Sachin Tendulkar before helping them power through to a target of 316 with seven wickets remaining. He did something similar, though to a smaller extent, in the biggest match of his career to date, the World Cup final.

Having made his debut in 2008, he was still struggling to stand out among the muddle of competitors for a middle-order spot in the Indian team till late 2010. That's when he conjured another of his now regular centuries after India had been set a large target, against Australia in Visakhapatnam. It kickstarted an extraordinarily fertile spell, and he hasn't missed a match since. The numbers he's stacking up are staggering: in 48 innings batting second, he averages 58.40 and has seven hundreds and 13 half-centuries.

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