Virat Kohli’s blockbuster performances encouraging sign for India ahead of T20 World Cup

Cricket – ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 – Final – India v Australia – Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad, India – November 19, 2023 India’s Virat Kohli celebrates after reaching his half century REUTERS/Andrew Boyers

As the Indian Premier League (IPL) campaign for Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) concludes, the biggest positive for the franchise and Team India is the form of batter Virat Kohli is – the cricket legend who reinvented himself with a more attacking game-play, especially against spin, delivering yet another big tournament.

After 15 matches, Virat has ended his IPL campaign as the Orange Cap holder for the most runs in the season. He has scored 741 runs at an average of 61.75 and a strike rate of 154.69, with a century and five half-centuries. His best score is 113*. With T20 WC coming up, Virat’s numbers across all the format look encouraging and all hopes are on him to deliver a title-winning campaign for India.

Heading into the ICC T20 World Cup, Virat is the most in-form player in the national side and him playing all games is a no-brainer. In the 2023 season of the IPL, he scored 639 runs in 14 matches at an average of 53.25 and a strike rate of 139.82, with two centuries and six fifties. His best score was 101*.

What stands out is his strike rate of 154.69, his best-ever in an IPL season and the total of 38 sixes that he has hit, equalling his six-tally of 2016 IPL in which he had blasted 973 runs in 16 matches with four centuries and seven fifties at an average of 81.08 and a strike rate of over 152.

Combining his statistics across both seasons, he has scored 1,380 runs in 29 innings at an average of 57.50 and a strike rate of 147.43, with three centuries and 11 fifties, best score of 113*. This makes him the most consistent batter across both the 2023 and 2024 seasons. , which he has played after India’s loss to England in the ICC T20 WC 2022 semifinal

Virat has also been magnificent for India across all big tournaments, ever since he returned from a break back in August 2022 during the Asia Cup, after months of poor, inconsistent returns with the bat. He then made an immediate impact in the Asia Cup, scoring 276 runs in five games at an average of 92.00, with a century, two fifties and best score of 122*, then his first century in three years. He ended as the second-highest run-getter in the season.

The 35-year-old took his brilliant form to ICC T20 World Cup 2022 in Australia, which he kickstarted with an incredible 82* in 53 balls against Pakistan at a jam-packed Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) in a tough 160-run chase. He stood tall at the top of the batting charts with 296 runs in six games, average of 98.66 and a strike rate of over 136. Four half-centuries came out of his bat, but he still could not take his team to the title.
After some fine performances across bilateral cricket, Virat proved his undeniable mettle in T20 cricket with 639 runs in IPL 2023, ending as the fourth-highest run-getter even though his side could not make it to the playoffs.

As the focus shifted towards the ODI World Cup in India that year, Virat scored a century in the Asia Cup against Pakistan, ending the tournament with 129 runs in three games at an average of 64.50 and the trophy in his hands.

The Cricket World Cup in India saw Virat delivering an all-time great campaign, smashing records everyday match-day, including breaking his idol Sachin Tendulkar’s record of most runs in a single World Cup and 49 ODI tons.

Since his comeback in Asia Cup 2022, he has scored 3,007 runs in 59 international matches at an average of 58.96, with 10 centuries and 17 fifties. His best score is 186. Including his IPL numbers, he has made 4,387 runs in 88 matches and 92 innings, at an average of 58.49, with 13 centuries and 28 fifties.

With a 741-run IPL, Virat has proved himself as a batter to watch out for in the T20 World Cup.



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