It seems like Virat Kohli sets or breaks a record every time he bats. On Thursday, Kohli surpassed Rahul Dravid’s 1137 runs in overseas Tests back in 2002 by scoring 1138 runs and counting in 2018. With 259 runs so far in the five innings in Australia, Kohli went past Dravid to top the list of most overseas Test runs by an Indian in a calendar year.
Apart from Kohli and Dravid, Mohinder Amarnath scored 1065 runs in 1983 while Sunil Gavaskar had scored 918 runs in 1971 to make the top four in the list.
Kohli has already scored a hundred in the series and a magnificent one. His sterling 123 in Perth on a pitch where every sin gle batsman from either side struggled to get going just showed the brilliance of the Delhi man. Kohli is now looking for a record-breaking 7th in Australia.
Despite not being able to score a hundred, his innings in Melbourne was one of resilience and patience. Virat Kohli had walked out when India were 123 for 2 with one session to be played on the opening day of the Boxing Day Test. While brought up the slowest of his 17 Test hundreds on the other end, Kohli struck a partnership of 170 off 409 deliveries.
Just minutes before his dismissal, Kohli was seen getting some attention from Indian physio Patrick Farhart. After a morning session where Australia looked for seam with the hard ball, Starc began throwing short deliveries at Kohli and Pujara after lunch. Kohli, who is a good player of pull shot, got his back in trouble while executing one and had to be treated.
Kohli popped in a couple of pills and stretched his back to begin batting again. He did run fine and bat alright but even after the treatment, Kohli looked uneasy and stretched multiple times while standing at the non-strikers end.
Kohli’s dismissal also came off a Starc short delivery that he tried to guide towards the ropes. Starc bowled a short-pitched one a little outside off and Kohli attemped an upper cut. His shot went too square at third man where Aaron Finch took a comfortable catch.
Virat Kohli has had a sensational year with the bat. He scored 871 runs across three formats in South Africa before scoring nearly 600 runs in five Tests in England to put behind him the horror of the 2014 tour.
However, Kohli’s captaincy has often raised questions. Sunil Gavaskar has been far from impressed with Kohli’s team selection and reckoned India should look at new leadership options if they fail to win against a weakened Australian team.
The series is currently level at 1-1 and India, after winning the toss in the Boxing Day Test and electing to bat, are looking to put a big first innings score on the board to peg Australia behind.
On the tour so far, Kohli has been painted as a villain by certain sections of the Australian media after he was involved in a heated war of words with Tim Paine in Perth. Australian coach Justin Langer even questioned Kohli’s celebrations at the Adelaide Oval.