Once a finisher always a finisher

Opinion Tuesday 25/October/2022 21:43 PM
By: Anis Sajan, Vice Chairman, Danube group
Once a finisher always a finisher

The World cup match between India and Pakistan at MCG had all the drama which made it another blockbuster thriller for fans from both the countries to remember it for years and years.

First there was the threat of rain which was looming large till the eve of the match but even the rain gods bowed down to witness one of the finest India Pakistan game. The crowds from both nations had thronged in large numbers to see this epic game and everyone i dsre say got their money’s worth.

The game ebbed and flowed from the beginning till the end and no one knew who would win till the last ball but there was one player among the 22 players who played this great game knew it that was King Kohli.

India were in deep waters at 31/4 after 6.1 overs and need and when Hardik Pandya joined Virat the required run rate had jumped to almost 10 . At the end of 11 overs India was just 54/4 and Virat Kohli himself was just at 12 of 21 balls with both Shadab Khan and Mohammed Nawaz not giving both the batsman an inch. That is when Hardik Pandya and Virat Kohli launched in to Mohammed Nawaz hit three sixes which gave India the momentum. The run rate dropped down from 12 to 10.75 but Pakistan had the fire power in their pace attack in Naseem Shah and Harris Rauf who bowled two tidy overs for just 12 runs. 48 runs were required of the last 18 balls and the win percentage showed Pakistan 90 percent and India 10 percent. The boundaries are big in Melbourne and it looked impossible that India would get past the target of 160.

But one player knew he would be able to do it that was the King. Kohli was on 46 of 41 balls at that time. He first took on Shaheen Shah Afridi who was not at its best and took him for 17 runs hitting three boundaries. Babar Azam had to close the game and he bought on his best bowler in Harris Rauf who bowled the first four balls giving just four runs. Hardik Pandya was not able to get his timing and power and India needed 28 of the last balls. Harris Rauf knew the last over was to be bowled by Nawaz who was under pressure and had to leave enough in the bank but Kohli had other ideas. Kohli punched the fifth ball straight over the bowlers head, there was timing and ball sailed over for a six and Rauf was stunned by the quality of the shot. The last delivery Rauf tried to bowl a full ball which Kohli dismissed it from its presence with a flick over fine leg. India were still in the game with 16 required of the last over of under pressure Nawaz. Hardik had done it in the Asia Cup against Nawaz just a month ago but it was not to be this time. Three balls and three runs and this is where Nawaz erred and decided to bowl seam up and bowled waist high full toss which Kohli deposited in to the stands. Fortune favors the brave and the free hit which bowled Kohli eluded the keeper and Kohli had the presence of mind to run three runs while rest of the Pakistan fielders were bamboozled as to why Kohli was running so hard in spite of being bowled. Thats what makes Kohli so special.

India won on the last ball and it was because of the brilliance of the chase master Kohli. He had done it for India on numerous occasions for team India and specially against Pakistan be it the 2012, 2014 world cup and 2016 World cup making chasing look ridiculously easy. In the 2021 World Cup against Pakistan Kohli scored 57 against Pakistan but that was when batting first and that is when Pakistan beat india for the first time. Kohli had to settle the score and what bigger occasion than in front of 90000 people at Melbourne packed to its full capacity in their first world cup game. For last two years his bat was not walking the talk and there was talks he should be dropped. Wasim Akram said ‘You kidding me, aren’t you’, he also added that Kohli is the greatest batsman of all time and only he could have pulled this off.

The boss of chasing pulled off yet another heist against Pakistan and fans and players specially Pakistan just had their jaw dropping as this was yet another Kohli special. Once a finisher , always a finisher and by far the greatest of all times, King Kohli.