Even though it’s a cliche, it seems like Virat Kohli’s first Test innings for India at Sabina Park in Kingston was just yesterday. Kohli’s first Test match for India was in 2011 against the West Indies. He scored 4 and 15, and he is about to play his 100th match for India. Over the last 15 years, Kohli has gone from being a cocky kid to being the best batsman in the game. Kohli won’t hit another hundred, but his steady play is still an example for many.
During this time one can see via today cricket match highlights, MS Dhoni stepped down as India’s captain and Virat Kohli took over. While Kohli was captain, India won a record 40 games, making him the most successful Indian captain in Test history. At the same time, his batting was at its best, and under Kohli’s leadership, India became a world power. Just in time for Kohli’s historic 100th match, we look back on the best parts of the Indian superstar’s Test career.
- Adelaide’s First Arrival
In January 2012, Kohli hit his first century against Australia in Adelaide. This was only five months after he played his first Test match for India. Kohli scored the only century for MS Dhoni’s team in four Tests, while the rest of India’s legendary batting lineup, including the Fab 4, struggled and looked confused against the dominant Australians. India had lost the previous three Tests, but Kohli scored 44 and 75 in the first two innings of the third. In the last game of the series, India was again put to the test, but Kohli was able to lead his team to victory. Kohli is known for having angered the crowd at the SCG, and he used that desire to get back at the Australians by hitting 116. India lost the series, but they picked up a young batter with a lot of potential in Virat Kohli.
- A perfect game of cricket in Australia in 2014.
He had a terrible trip to England, where he scored only 131 runs in five games. The 24-year-old had already had trouble with a strong English opponent, and now he would have to deal with an even stronger one in Australia. But this time, Kohli would be very sure of himself and show that he was better. India lost the series 0–2, but it was around this time that Kohli’s batting was at its best. He finished the series with an amazing 692 runs, thanks to four centuries in four Tests, including two in Adelaide (a game in which he led India to the edge of victory before returning disappointed). Bowlers all over the world took notice when a new star was born.
- The 2016 reign of terror
For Kohli, the year 2016 was like 1998 was for Tendulkar. The Indian superstar’s year was amazing. Kohli has taken India to the semifinals of the T20 World Cup by himself and has scored more than 900 runs in the IPL. Even though Kohli was known as a run machine and one of the best batsmen in the world before 2016, by the end of the year he was THE GUY. In 2016, Kohli’s batting skills were at their best, and he used them to great effect against England, the West Indies, Bangladesh, and New Zealand’s bowling attacks during a long home series schedule. Kohli hit a double hundred in one Test against Bangladesh. He scored 251 runs in four Tests against the Windies and 309 runs in three Tests against the Kiwis. He scored 655 runs in four Tests against England. He got a total of 1457 runs, including three double tonnes and five centuries. After Rahul Dravid’s 1145 runs in 2011, Kohli became the first Indian to score more than 1000 runs in a single year. He also joined Don Bradman and Ricky Ponting as the only players to score three double centuries in the same year. Wow.
- A comeback for the ages
When Virat Kohli’s England team came to England in 2018 for a five-Test series, James Anderson couldn’t wait to lick his lips. Since Anderson has been Kohli’s kryptonite in the past, it was only natural for the experienced bowler to feel good about his chances this time. This time, however, the India captain would win by a large margin. Kohli was unbeatable when he went up against the same opponent he had faced in 2014. He had 593 runs after five games, which was 244 more than the runner-up. At Edgbaston and Nottingham, he got hundreds, and he also got three half-centuries. Even though India lost the series 1-3, Kohli played another masterpiece against the English swing and the bowling attack of Anderson, Stuart Broad, and the up-and-coming Sam Curran.
- Conquering Australia Down Under and leading India back to No. 1 rankings in Test
When Kohli took over as captain, India was ranked seventh in Tests. India had been the best Test team for five years in a row before he finally made up his mind to leave. In 2018, when India beat Australia on Australian soil to win back the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, it was the best moment of Kohli’s time as India’s Test captain. It took 71 years and 12 series, but Kohli’s determined team finally got India’s name in the record books by beating Australia 2-1 in Adelaide and Melbourne. Even though Kohli didn’t have his best offensive series (he scored 282 runs with an average of 40), he will be remembered as one of the few captains to ever beat Australia on their home turf. Kohli led India to a 2-1 series lead over England in 2021. If India had won at Lord’s and the Oval, it would have been another feather in his cap as a leader. India was thought to have the best chance of winning the fifth and final match, which was set to take place in Manchester. But when Covid cases showed up in the Indian camp, those hopes were dashed, and the match was put off.
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