Virat Kohli scored his fourth IPL ton in nine matches, to carry RCB to victory over the Kings XI Punjab in Bengaluru on Wednesday.
The form that Kohli is in at the moment defies belief. He went into this tournament with the reputation as the world’s No 1-ranked T20 batsman already on his shoulders. One thing that was missing from an already glittering career was a T20 ton. He now has four, and he’s done it in just nine games.
He leads the IPL run charts over AB de Villiers by close to over 250 runs, and is in with a realistic chance of becoming the first ever to pass 1 000 runs in a season. RCB have won three games in the space of five days, and a win in their final match should be enough to see them through to the playoffs.
They were sent into bat first in the rain-affected match against Kings XI, and one could be forgiven for not realising the devastation that Chris Gayle caused upfront. In 11 overs, Gayle and Kohli amassed 147 runs, smashing 16 sixes between them. Gayle’s 32-ball 73 came to an end with four overs left in a match restricted to 15 overs apiece. De Villiers got a second-ball duck, bowled by Kyle Abbott, but Kohli kept plundering the runs and got his side to 211-3, which is a massive total for 20 overs, let alone 15.
The chase was a frightening prospect, and Kings XI made it look exactly that, as they were bullied to 120-9 from their allotted overs. Hashim Amla hit one six in his innings of nine, while the tournament can’t end soon enough for David Miller, who scored three. A huge victory for RCB against the bottom-placed Kings XI, to keep their playoff hopes very much alive.
|Kolkata Knight Riders||12||7||5||14||+0.280|
|Kings XI Punjab||13||4||9||8||-0.693|