Virat Kohli smashed just two half-centuries in the entire IPL 2022 season, however, he smashed his third fifty of the IPL 2023 season already as the former Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper helped RCB defeat Delhi Capitals by 23 runs at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru on Saturday.
The 34-year-old won the Player of the Match award as he smashed 50 runs in 34 balls against Delhi, helping set a platform for his fellow teammates as RCB reached a total of 174/6.
They would eventually go on to win the match by 23 runs after a spirited blowing performance from debutant Vijaykumar Vyshak who picked up three wickets, while Mohammed Siraj also chipped in with two scalps.
Earlier, Kohli had seen his approach questioned by Simon Doull, the New Zealand cricketer turned commentator was unhappy with Virat’s performance in RCB’s defeat to Lucknow Super Giants.
“Virat Kohli started off like a train. He was hammering shots. But from 42 to 40 they took 10 balls. He’s concerned about his personal milestone. I don’t think there’s room for that in this game anymore. You’ve just got to keep going, especially with wickets in hand at that stage. You’ve got to keep going,” said Doull.
Kohli however responded back in stunning fashion by smashing a fifty against Delhi with a strike rate of 147, and in his post-match interaction, the former Indian skipper said that he tries to go after the best bowlers in the opposition lineup to unsettle them.
“When I’ve played my best cricket, those are the balls I’ve put away consistently (length balls on the up). That helps me to put pressure on the bowlers. When I put away their best balls, they’re going to try to do something else. I back myself to hit good balls and the best bowlers in the opposition. That’s how I motivate myself to play out there,” said Virat.
Talking about his dismissal, the RCB opener stated that he was unhappy with the manner he got out.
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“I was quite disappointed that I got out to a full toss. I’ve been playing really well. I wanted to make sure that after fifty, I was targetting 30-35 runs off the next 10 balls. That’s how I play. That would’ve helped us get past 200,” Kohli added.