King Kohli conquers is a great tribute to Indian captain as he achieved his fifth double hundred as a test captain and kept the Indian flag flying in International cricket. After Sunny Gavaskar and Sachin Tendulkar, we have another maestro, who carries Indian batting on his shoulder with sterling performance. Sri Lanka’s bowling may be toothless but the way Kohli accumulated runs in all the three formats of the game and touch a purple patch in his illustrious carrier cannot be rewritten in the annals of the game for some time.
By scoring 10 hundreds in a calendar year, he made a mark as a milestone man. His crisp stroke play on the leg side, huge hits over the boundary and delicate leg glances all put him ahead of all the contemporary batsmen in the world. Kohli is a man with the mission and leaves Sri Lankan team gasping for breath. He came, saw and conquered VCA Stadium cricket ground crowd with elegant stroke play, intense concentration and deep determination to achieve all the time. He is an asset to the side and his astute handling of bowlers pave way for a winning move. He is confidence personified and that is the real strength of a star studded batting side. We need to have such a gifted batsman to boost our susceptible batting line in the top of the batting order. One more double hundred in test cricket put him at par with Rahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar. He is indeed a great motivator. Kudos to Kohli!
Indian batting revolves round Kohli and the bowling is in the safe hands of Ravichandran Ashwin as he grabbed 8 wickets in the match for 130 runs to hasten the end just after lunch on the fourth day. He did a great job to pin down stroke filled Sri Lankan batsmen and foxed them with straight ones, wrong-un and cleverly flighted deliveries. He claimed his 300th wicket in 54 test matches and surpassed Dennis Lillee’s bowling exploits. He played a pivotal role in this match with a huge win by an innings and 239 runs. Previous to this we defeated Bangladesh by a same margin. Earlier, Ashwin, who collected his 500th international wicket when he dismissed Dilruwan Perera, also rewrote the record for the most wickets taken by an Indian bowler under a particular captain. Ashwin is a match winner and he kept the Sri Lankan batsmen guessing and his tally of 182 wickets under Virat Kohli as the best of the best.
Ashwin had started bowling in the Sri Lankan second innings with 296 wickets to his name and quickly ran through the lower middle-order to reach the milestone. Australian fast bowling legend Lillee had reached the milestone in 56 Test matches way back in 1981 and it took 36 years for another bowler to eclipse the record. Ashwin is also ahead of some of the illustrious names, who had completed the milestone in quick time. Among them are Muttiah Muralitharan (58 Tests), Richard Hadlee, Malcolm Marshall and Dale Steyn (61 Tests each). Ashwin is only the fifth Indian bowler to complete a career 300 wickets in Test cricket. Ash”win” is the architect of India’s emphatic win.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)