Visakhapatnam: Virat Kohli Wednesday became the fastest to score 10,000 runs in One-day Internationals, rewriting, fittingly enough, the iconic Sachin Tendulkar’s record and compounding the cricket community’s conundrum to find the right superlatives for his phenomenal batting.
‘King’ Kohli comfortably bettered the record set by the man who was to Indian cricket for over two decades what the 29-year-old has been for the past few years.
“Personally, I’m pretty proud of my innings and my milestone,” Kohli said after the match. Tendulkar took 259 innings to get there, while Kohli has so far batted in 205 innings. Fortune, too, was on Kohli’s side as West Indies skipper Jason Holder dropped his Indian counterpart on 44.
Seventeen summers ago, Tendulkar had ventured into what was then an unchartered territory, during a match against Australia.
On Wednesday, Kohli became the 13th batsman to reach the milestone with an unbeaten 157 off 129 balls, which was his 37th ODI hundred. In the process, he also became the fastest to 1,000 runs in a calendar year, taking just 11 innings to get there.
Not long ago, while the cricket world struggled to look for words to aptly describe Kohli’s phenomenal batting, his coach Ravi Shastri thought it would be wise to visit the bookstore, buy the latest edition of the Oxford dictionary and look for the adjectives that befit the captain and his superhuman feats.
“If I were you, I would visit the bookstore and pick up the Oxford dictionary,” Shastri had said after a Kohli century guided India to victory over South Africa in February. Some years ago, Tendulkar, after scoring his 100th international century, said he would love to see an Indian – someone like Kohli or Rohit Sharma – break his records.
At a venue set amidst picturesque hills, Kohli reached the mark when he played Ashley Nurse for a single in the 37th over of the second ODI against the West Indies. Having an enviable record at the Dr YSR ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium with scores of 118, 117, 99 and 65, Kohli began his latest innings with a boundary through the off-side.
Entering the game 81 short of 10,000, with this achievement the run machine added another feather to his illustrious cap. Kohli has been in sublime form across formats this year and has scored over 900 runs in ODIs alone. He is currently the world’s No.1 batsman in both the Test and one-day formats.
Kohli’s journey has been awe-inspiring, from his first-class debut, winning the U-19 World Cup, captaining the Indian team, to rewriting batting records at will. ‘Virat Kohli has redefined what consistency means,’ tweeted swashbuckling former opener Virender Sehwag.
With his unbeatable performances, Kohli has won several accolades including the Arjuna award, ICC World Cricketer of the year and multiple BCCI international Cricketer of the Year awards.
“It’s an incredible achievement by Virat to complete 10,000 runs ODI before he is even 30 years old. It’s only expected that Virat will reach many more batting milestones in future,” BCCI acting president CK Khanna said. In the first match against the Caribbean side, Kohli notched up his 36th ODI hundred as he stroked his way to a breezy 140, helping the home team take a 1-0 lead in the five-match series.
Besides Tendulkar and Kohli, Sourav Ganguly, Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Rahul Dravid are the other Indian cricketers to cross 10000 runs in the format.
|* Kohli brings up 10000 ODI runs in his 205th innings
* Tendulkar had got to the 10000-run club in 259 innings
* Kohli is the 5th Indian to score 10000 runs in ODIs