Top 5 T20I innings by Virat Kohli

unnamed   2024 07 05T173600.900
Virat Kohli earned a total of 7 Player of the Series awards in his T20I career

It was a bittersweet moment for Indian cricket fans when Virat Kohli announced his retirement from the shortest format of the game after finally getting his hands on the glorious ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 trophy. In his magnificent international career of over 16 years, Virat Kohli has achieved it all, the under-19 World Cup in 2008, the ODI World Cup in 2011, and the Champions Trophy in 2013. 

However, the only thing missing from his stellar resume was the T20 World Cup and he ticked that as well when the Indian cricket team defeated South Africa in Barbados by seven runs to lift the T20 World Cup trophy. Kohli played an instrumental role as he dished out a knock of 76 runs off 59 balls including six boundaries and two maximums to win the Player of the Match award. 

And with the performance, the modern-day legend also decided to put curtains over his international career in the T20 Internationals. He finished as the second-highest run-scorer in the T20Is just behind Rohit Sharma with a whopping 4188 runs, including 38 fifties and one hundred to his name. In this article, let’s take a look at five spectacular knocks that helped Kohli establish his domination in the shortest format of international cricket. 

#5 77 vs Sri Lanka, 2014 T20 World Cup Final

India was on the verge of winning their second ICC Men’s T20 World Cup title in 2014 as they locked horns with Sri Lanka in the final. However, the team succumbed to a horrible batting performance with Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, and Yuvraj Singh losing their wickets without making any significant contributions.

In the testing times, Virat Kohli emerged as the saving grace for the team as he single-handedly took the side to a score of 130 runs. Kohli hit 77 runs off 58 balls including five boundaries and four sixes but unfortunately was dismissed via a run-out at the hands of Sachithra Senanayake. Despite the efforts by the top-order batter, India recorded a defeat by six wickets as Sri Lanka chased the total within 17.5 overs. 

#4 72* vs South Africa, 2014 T20 World Cup

Virat is the second-highest run-scorer in T20I

Not just the final, but Virat Kohli was also the hero for the Indian cricket team during the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 and the same helped him earn the Player of the tournament award. Batting in the second innings, India was presented with the task of chasing 173 runs in the 20 overs and despite starting well, the two openers departed quickly. 

However, Virat Kohli displayed a brilliant brand of cricket as he smashed not out 72 runs off just 44 balls. His knock included five fours and two sixes at a strike rate of 163.64. The second-best score for the Indian team during the match was by Ajinkya Rahane, as he played a knock of 32 runs off 30 balls. 

As the now 35-year-old easily defended his title of ‘The Chase Master’, India scored a win by six wickets in 19.1 overs and the Delhi native was presented with the Player of the Match award. 

#3 122* vs Afghanistan, Asia Cup 2022

It might come as a surprise to many, but Virat Kohli, who boasts of having over 75 centuries, has only one T20 International hundred and it too came just two years back in 2022 against Afghanistan. Playing a Super 4 match against Afghans during the 2022 edition of the Asia Cup, the Men in Blue went on a rampage, putting up a score of 212 runs in just 20 overs.

Virat Kohli was the one leading from the front as he hammered the highest score of his T20I career, i.e. 122 runs off just 61 balls. He hit as many as 12 boundaries and six maximums at a strike rate of 200. This was Kohli’s first T20I century in international cricket and he took home the Player of the Match award as India scored a win by a massive 101 runs. 

#2 82* vs Australia, T20 World Cup 2016

Virat’s innings against Australia was crowned as the greatest moment in T20 World Cup history

Despite India not winning the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup trophy in 2016, Virat Kohli won the Player of the Series award and it was the knock against Australia during India’s last Super 10 group match that Kohli earned the praise from all over the cricket fraternity. India had a relatively easy target of 161 runs while playing in Mohali, but the team suffered a blow with no Indian batter except Kohli scoring over 21 runs.

However, Virat was enough for the decorated Australian bowling attack as he played an unbeaten innings of 82 runs off just 51 balls. Smashing bowlers like Shane Watson, James Faulkner, and Josh Hazelwood all over the park, the Delhi-born batter hit nine fours and two sixes. His heroics not only won him the Player of the Match award but also helped steer India to a victory in 19.1 overs by six wickets. 

#1 82* vs Pakistan, T20 World Cup 2022

If there is one T20I knock Virat Kohli will always be remembered for, then it has to be the one against Pakistan at the Melbourne Cricket Ground during the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022. India was chasing a decent score of 160 runs in the allotted 20 overs when they were hit by the pace duo of Naseen Shah and Haris Rauf. Losing four wickets quickly, the Men in Blue found themselves in hot waters with just 31 runs on the board in 6.1 overs.

However, the team had nothing to worry about as Virat Kohli produced the best knock of his T20I career to help India chase the total within 20 overs and score a victory by four wickets. The 35-year-old went unbeaten while smacking 82 runs off just 53 balls with the help of six boundaries and four maximums at a strike rate of 154.72.

One of the best moments of the game came during the second-last over as Kohli smacked two brilliant back-to-back sixes against Haris Rauf to bring India back into the game and present them with a fair chance. Meanwhile, he found an ally in Hardik Pandya and they together stitched a partnership of 113 runs.