Virat Kohli backs India's changed T20 approach despite series-levelling loss to South Africa

Sudhir Gupta 23/09/2019
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Virat Kohli remains committed to his vision.

India’s gung-ho batting effort in the third and final T20 against South Africa at Bengaluru failed to pay off but skipper Virat Kohli has vowed to not drop that approach in the lead up to the 2020 T20 World Cup in Australia.

Kohli and his men were dealt a nine-wicket loss by the visitors on Sunday after they were restricted to a modest total of 134-9 at the Chinnaswamy stadium. This came after Kohli won the toss and opted to bat first at a venue where chasing teams have dominated historically.

Despite generating a decent start which saw them race away to 62-1, India’s batsmen faltered greatly in the latter half of the innings in a bid to force the run-scoring rate. While that adventurous approach cost the hosts a chance to win the series against South Africa, Kohli is more than happy for the team to stepped out of its ‘comfort zone’.

“We wanted to go for a big score and that’s exactly why we batted first,” Kohli told broadcasters Star Sports after the loss.

“In the past, in certain games in T20 cricket, we have been 20-30 runs short, batting first. That has cost us the game. So, the idea again, as I said at the toss, was to come out of our comfort zone and then try to get that big score because we are batting till number nine.

“These kinds of games will keep happening as long as we are wanting to come out of our comfort zones as a team and putting ourselves in a situation, which could be the case in a big game in a big tournament.”

India’s modest total failed to trouble the Proteas who chased down the target with more than three overs and nine wickets to spare in the end. Despite the unflattering scoreline, Kohli remains committed to taking a risky approach in the format with the World Cup just over a year away.

“Nothing is a given or a guarantee before you start playing,” Kohli stated.

“I think if we as a team are willing to get out of our comfort zones a lot more, then we will be unfazed with what happens at the toss. That’s why we have people batting till nine.

“Unless you do that and start taking those risks, you are always going to be put under pressure somewhere or the other. We want to make sure we iron all of those things out before we head into the World Cup.”

Kohli and India will now turn their attentions to a three-match Test series against the same opposition which begins at Visakhapatnam on October 2.

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India vs South Africa LIVE: Hosts look to seal the deal in final T20I at Bengaluru

Sport360 staff 22/09/2019
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Kohli's men are in action at Bengaluru. Image - @BCCI/Twitter

India are aiming to seal a T20 series triumph over South Africa as the two teams lock horns in the third and final clash at the Chinnaswamy stadium in Bengaluru.

The hosts lead the three-match series by 1-0 after their seven-wicket win in the second T20I at Mohali while the opening clash at Dharamsala was abandoned without a ball being bowled.

It will be a second straight T20 series clean sweep for India if they can attain the win following their 3-0 thumping of West Indies in the Caribbean last month.

Will the Proteas be able to salvage the series under stand-in skipper Quinton de Kock or will the hosts prove too good once again? Find out by following the ball-by-ball LIVE updates from Bengaluru below.

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Why 'Universe Boss' Chris Gayle is one of the greatest limited-overs batsmen of all time

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Gayle going strong at 40.

Chris Gayle turned 40 on Saturday with the veteran opening batsman continuing to go from strength to strength for the West Indies and in franchise T20 cricket.

The ‘Universe Boss’ remains one of the most explosive and entertaining batsmen to grace the game and will walk away with the legacy of inspiring an entire new generation of T20 merchants around the world, especially in the Caribbean, by the time he hangs up his bat.

As the Jamaican enters his roaring 40s, we look at some of the incredible numbers behind his illustrious career which began all the way back in 1999 and is showing no sign of stopping any time soon.

13,021 – Is the number of T20 runs Gayle has scored over the course of his career. It is the highest by any batsman in the format by some distance with Brendon McCullum a long way behind in second place with 9,922 runs to his name. Gayle’s humongous run tally has been accumulated in 383 innings at an average of nearly 39 and a strike-rate of over 147.

959 – The number of sixes struck by Gayle to swell his T20 run tally. Once again, it is the highest by any batsman in the format with his compatriot Kieron Pollard a long way behind in second place with 626 sixes.

Universe Boss for a reason.

Universe Boss for a reason.

22 – The number of T20 centuries registered. Two of them have come in international cricket while the rest have come for various T20 franchises. No other batsman in history has registered 10 tons, let alone 20, with McCullum’s seven centuries being his closest competition.

10,480 – Is Gayle’s ODI run tally from a total of 301 matches. It is the highest by any Windies batsman with the left-hander recently moving past Brian Lara’s total of 10,348 runs in the series against India.

4 – Gayle is one of only four batsmen in history to have registered a triple ton at least twice in his Test career. His first triple century came against Pakistan in 2005 before he struck a 333 against Sri Lanka in 2010. Sir Don Bradman, Lara and Virender Sehwag are the only other batsmen to have attained this feat.

1 – The Windies opener was the first batsman in history to register an international ton in all three formats of the game. He achieved this milestone when he struck 117 against South Africa in the opening match of the 2007 World Twenty20.

30 – The number of deliveries taken by Gayle to bring up an IPL ton in 2013 in a clash between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Pune Warriors. It remains the fastest T20 ton by any batsman to date in any competition.

175 – Is the total number of runs scored by Gayle in that same innings against Pune Warriors. It is the highest individual T20 score by any batsman in history and it came off just 66 deliveries with the help of a staggering 17 sixes.

Mayhem by Gayle in IPL 2013.

Mayhem by Gayle in IPL 2013.

18 – The number of sixes struck off Gayle’s bat in a 2017 Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) clash between Rangpur Riders and Dhaka Dynamites. It is the most by any batsman in a single T20 innings and it broke his own record of 17 sixes against Pune Warriors in that devastating 175-run knock.

215 – Is Gayle’s highest ODI score. It was achieved during a World Cup 2015 clash against Zimbabwe in Canberra. He is among only six batsmen in history to have registered a double ton in ODIs and the only one to do so in a World Cup clash.

331 – The number of ODI sixes Gayle has struck in 294 innings. It is the second highest by any batsman in the format and is only behind Pakistan’s Shahid Afridi who tonked a total of 351 sixes in 369 innings.

39 – The number of sixes struck by Gayle during the ODI series between the Windies and England in March this year. It is the most by any batsman in a bilateral ODI series and it broke the previous record set by India’s Rohit Sharma who slammed 23 sixes against Australia in 2013/14.

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