Virat Kohli’s 30th ODI century helped India sweep the five-match series against Sri Lanka 5-0 at Colombo on Sunday.
The whitewash of the hosts was India’s fifth consecutive bilateral series win in the 50-over format while also achieving a runner-up finish in the ICC Champions Trophy earlier this year.
The hallmark of these wins has been Kohli leading by example with the bat as he continues to notch up mind-boggling numbers in limited-overs cricket.
Since the turn of 2016, the 28-year-old has racked up 1756 runs in 28 innings at an average of 92.42.
During the course of this period, the Indian skipper has notched up seven tons and 10 half-centuries as he now lies level with Australia’s Ricky Ponting and behind only Sachin Tendulkar in the list for the most 50-over centuries.
The Indian batting mainstay has also completed 1000 runs since the start of 2017 at the R Premadasa stadium as he guided India home in a convincing six-wicket victory.
The burden of captaincy is one Kohli has carried with aplomb and he has flourished in the role rather than wither under the massive expectations of over one billion people back home.
The Delhi-born batsman was handed the reins of the ODI captaincy from MS Dhoni before the start of the limited-overs series against the visiting England in January this year.
Since then, the Men in Blue have played 18 matches, winning 14 and losing just three. This period has seen India beat England 2-1, West Indies 3-1, Sri Lanka 5-0 and a runner-up finish in the ICC Champions Trophy.
We take a look at the Kohli’s performances with the bat in this golden period.
Series Result: 2-1
Innings – 3
Runs – 185
Centuries – 1
Average – 61.67
Unbelievable. Is there anyone in team sport in the world that is dominating their profession as much as @imVkohli right now? A modern legend
— Stevie J (@StevieJ_23) January 15, 2017
Series Result: 3-1
Runs – 244
Innings – 5
Centuries – 2
Average – 81.33
Runs – 258
Innings – 5
Average – 129
Series Result: 5-0
Runs – 330
Innings – 5
Centuries – 2
Average – 110
Innings – 18
Runs – 1017
Centuries – 4
Average – 92.45
MS Dhoni has been on a record-breaking spree in recent times and he added another feather in his collection on Sunday when he became the first wicket-keeper in the history of ODI cricket to achieve 100 stumpings.
The maverick from Ranchi stumped young Sri Lankan spinner Akila Dananjaya in the final game of the five-match ODI series against Sri Lanka at Colombo.
It was only poetic that the record was achieved on Sri Lankan soil as Dhoni overtook the legendary Kumar Sangakkara who had 99 stumpings to his name.
The veteran Indian wicket-keeper had equalled the Sri Lankan icon’s tally in the second match of the series in Pallekele and went one step further on Sunday.
Dananjaya had no chance after he advanced down the track against wrist-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal leaving Dhoni all the time in the world to reach the landmark.
— Sir Ravindra Jadeja (@SirJadeja) September 3, 2017
The 36-year-old now has 386 dismissals in the 50-over format which puts him fourth on the all-time list. We take a look at how Dhoni compares to the other wicket-keeping greats of the game.
Matches – 404
Dismissals – 482
Catches – 383
Stumpings – 99
Matches – 287
Dismissals – 472
Catches – 417
Stumpings – 55
Matches – 295
Dismissals – 424
Catches – 402
Stumpings – 22
Matches – 301
Dismissals – 383
Catches – 283
Stumpings – 100
Matches – 219
Dismissals – 287
Catches – 214
Stumpings – 73
Virat Kohli’s India will be looking to complete their second whitewash of the Sri Lankan tour when they take on the islanders in the final ODI of the five-match series at Colombo on Wednesday.
Almost everything the visitors have touched this tour has turned into gold with dominant displays in every match as Sri Lanka have found it tough to find an answer to the marauding Indians.
Going into Sunday with a 4-0 lead, Kohli and co will be looking to experiment with the team combinations in the absence of any pressure.
There will however, be a slight amount of pressure for Indian batsman KL Rahul when he pads up to the crease at the Premadasa stadium.
The stylish Karnataka player has not had the best of series with the bat in the limited-overs format but the performance of the unit has a whole has meant that Rahul’s meagerly contributions have not made much of a difference.
— Wisden India (@WisdenIndia) September 2, 2017
The India Test opener has yet to consolidate his place for the Men in Blue in the 50-over format with only nine innings played so far in his fledgling career.
He introduced himself with a bang after scoring a century on debut against Zimbabwe in 2016 but has scored only a single score over 50 in the innings to come since then.
Indeed, in his last six innings, he’s notched only a miserly 52 runs for India in ODIs and has particularly struggled against Sri Lanka’s young-spinner Akila Dananjaya in the ongoing series.
Rahul has fallen prey to the youngster in each of his three innings in the series where he has a highest score of just 17.
His form in the limited-overs set-up has been in stark contrast to his Test showings where he recently became the first Indian batsman to score seven consecutive half-centuries.
Rahul missed the first Test against the hosts due to a fever but scored a half-century each of the following two games to register the record.
With the likes of Manish Pandey and Ajinkya Rahane knocking on the doors, the 25-year-old Rahul will need to step up soon if he wants to secure a place in the side come the 2019 ICC World Cup.
Shikhar Dhawan’s absence for Sunday’s game means the right-handed batsman could even take up the opener’s slot where he has flourished in the Test set-up.
For now, Rahul still has it all to prove as he seeks to transfer his Test form to white-ball cricket.