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I have no idea how that happened, lost for words: Kohli after win over Pak


was lost for words after leaving the world speechless with his here on Sunday.

In his own words, King Kohli had no idea how he had engineering India’s epic win over arch-rivals Pakistan in their blockbuster T20 World Cup face-off.

When all seemed lost at 31 for four in a stiff chase of 160 at the gargantuan Ground, Kohli thought otherwise and spearheaded India to a remarkable four-wicket win with a knock that will go down as one of the best in the tournament’s history.

He found an able ally in star all-rounder Hardik Pandya, who contributed an invaluable 40 during a fifth-wicket stand of 113 runs. Not surprisingly, the 82 not out 53 balls has been rated as his best knock.

“Well, it’s a surreal atmosphere. I honestly have no words. I have no idea how that happened,” Kohli said after his incredible knock in the team’s big-ticket tournament opener.

The run-machine added,” Hardik kept telling me, just believe we can stay till the end. I’m lost for words.”

Kohli struck six fours and four sixes during his stay in the middle, effortlessly getting maximums off deliveries bowled at over 150-155kph.

Asked when did he decide to shift gears, Kohli said, “Well, I think when Shaheen (Afridi) bowled from the Pavilion end, I told Hardik we have to take him down.

“The calculation was simple. Nawaz had one over to bowl, so if I could take Haris down, they would panic. It came down to 16 off 6. I’m kind of lost for words.”

When asked about his two sixes off Haris Rauf, who pegged India back with his double blows early on, Kohli said, “It’s just instinctively I saw it, told myself to stay still. The one at long-on was unexpected, it was a back-of-a-length slower ball. The fine leg one, I just threw my bat at it.”

Then he was speaking about his best T20 knocks.

“Till today I said Mohali was my best T20 innings. Then I got 82 off 52, today I got 82 off 53. Both are just as special. Today I will count this one higher because of the magnitude of the occasion and the situation we were in.”

“All these months when I was struggling, you guys (the crowd) kept me going. Thank you so much.”

Captain Rohit Sharma, who was dismissed early alongside KL Rahul, couldn’t praise his predecessor enough.

“Hats off to Virat. It has to go off as not one of his best, but the best innings he has played for India,” Rohit said.

“I have no voice left. We were always wanting to make sure we stayed in the game as long as possible. We’ve been talking constantly about it. No matter what the situation, you’ve got to believe you can pull through, and that partnership changed the game for us.

“There was good carry, good swing as well, and we utilised that well up front. That was good to see from the bowling perspective. They batted well in the middle. We knew it would not be an easy target on that pitch.”

Notwithstanding the situation, the skipper had full faith in Kohli and Hardik. The required run-rate kept increasing even as the duo of Kohli and Hardik looked to revive India after the horror start.

But, in the end, India emerged victorious thanks to Kohli’s incredible knock.

“We knew we would have to bat out of our skins. Virat and Hardik are experienced guys. Staying calm and taking it as deep as possible was critical, and they did that.

“It’s good for our confidence to get off the mark in our first game, and the way we won is more pleasing for us, the way we came back. Thanks to everyone who came out and supported us, and I will expect nothing less wherever we travel in Australia.”

Pakistan skipper Babar Azam gave credit where it was due, after having India on the mat at one stage.

“Our bowlers bowled really well. All credit to Kohli and Pandya. It wasn’t easy with the new ball. We had partnerships after 10 overs. We had a chance. We tried to stick to our plans. But credit to .

“In the middle we decided we wanted a wicket and held the spinner back. We had a lot of positives. The way Iftikhar played and the way Shan played,” Babar said.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


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