Former Indian skipper Virat Kohli finally smashed his maiden T20I and 71st International century against Afghanistan in Asia Cup 2022 Super 4 match on Thursday.
The master batsman scored an international century after a gap of 1020 days. He now holds the record of second highest number of centuries across all formats. Kohli has also become the 4th Indian to smash a century in all three formats after Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma, and KL Rahul.
The superstar batsman is now the fastest to achieve the 71 centuries mark. Sachin Tendulkar and Ricky Ponting achieved this feat in 523 and 652 innings while Kohli took 522 innings.
During the innings break, Kohli said, “I feel very blessed, very grateful right now. The last 2-2.5 years have taught me a lot. I am going to turn 34 this November. These celebrations are all from the past. I’ve put a lot of things in perspective. Actually, I was a bit shocked because this was the format I least expected a century in. But look, it’s all god’s blessing. I’ve been working hard. It was a moment that was very special for me and for the team as well.”
While taking about moral support, he dedicated his 71st century to his wife Anushka Sharma.
Kohli went on to say, “When you have someone next to you, having conversations, putting things in the right perspective like I have been and Anushka [Sharma] has been by my side through all these times… time away from the game has taught me a lot of things. When I came back I was not desperate. I was grateful for what God has blessed me with. People were talking about me not getting a hundred. But I was looking at how much he’s given me already. So that really calmed me down. That relaxed me. I was just happy to come back. Six weeks off, and I was refreshed. I realized after taking a break how tired I really was physically and mentally. Your competitiveness doesn’t allow you to take that call but I think it was a blessing in disguise for me. I wanted to be the best version of myself for the team and when I came here and batted in the nets, I felt my old rhythm coming back and it was just about getting those performances in the middle as well.”
Kohli looked at his absolute best in the match against Afghanistan. He completed his half century in 32 balls. He then accelerated and smashed out a century in just 53 balls. With his stellar knock of 122 on 61 balls, Kohli has surpassed Rohit Sharma’s 2017 record of 118 against Sri Lanka.
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