“It virtually felt like you are out of the tournament at the end of 10 overs “
Virat Kohli started with these gloomy thoughts he had in mind as India found themselves struggling by the end of 10th over, having already lost the top order. What added to the woes was the otherwise dangerous, Yuvraj Singh getting injured and the spiking run rate which was doing no good. That’s when Virat Kohli, in these dire circumstances flourished with ample support from his captain MS Dhoni mainting a cool composure on the other side of the wicket. Post the emphatic win, which many tout as the best victory over Australia ever, Virat Kohli spoke to the press explaining what was going on in his mind, as he went on to drive India home, almost single handedly..
“It virtually felt like you are out of the tournament at the end of 10 overs. To pull the game back after that along with MS Dhoni – I don’t know how we did it. Even out there in the middle, I didn’t know how this was happening. I am just grateful that I was able to do it for the team,” Kohli said.
“It was a pretty emotional feeling when I saw Dhoni hitting the winning runs. I don’t really know what to say. “That is the reason you play the sport. That is the feeling that you crave as a sportsperson. It is such a wonderful moment for your team. To see your teammates celebrate and get happy is a wonderful feeling,” added Kohli.
He admitted to having not played such a stellar innings ever in his prolific career.
“I have never played an innings like that where we needed 39 off 3 overs and I have been able to pull it off with MS Dhoni batting at the other end,” Kohli continued.
“The thoughts, the pre-planning for the boundary just kept coming to me in my mind. I knew a hundred percent that I had to target James Faulkner in the 18th over. I thought 3 overs and 39 runs, and one over has to be a big one at least close to 15 runs. We got bigger (19) than that. I think just before the 16th over, I thought if we don’t get too many boundaries, we might be struggling in the end because the pitch was not as flat.”
Kohli said that the slower balls were holding up.
“The slower balls were holding up. It was very important to stay in the moment and pick your gaps. It was a quick outfield, so I knew if I could beat the fielder inside the ring, I would probably end up getting four runs.”
“I think what really helped was him (Dhoni) running those twos. The opposition panicked a bit because of that. They were unsettled because they knew we could run the runs as well and get 12 off one over without taking a risk. I think that is when the bowlers started thinking too much,” Kohli said.
“Credit to MS Dhoni. He kept me calm and kept telling me – ‘Pick your areas, these many runs are left in these many balls’. He didn’t want me to get carried away or over excited.
“He just kept telling me what are the areas I could pick and that just gave me assurance,” Kohli said.
“If I was going to go towards covers, he would give me assurance again and I became confident. I think that is where communication and partnership helps. It was wonderful to pull the team out of that situation.”
Kohli said that it is for the cricket lovers to decide where to put this Indian chase in the pecking order.
“I don’t know where I would put this chase. It is up to the people to decide that. I enjoy playing every innings for my country. Hopefully, they think this is one of the better chases the Indian team has pulled off. Not just me, it is an effort by everyone. I scored 82; I didn’t score all the runs in the game. Others have contributed as well, so credit goes to them also.”