T20 WC Final: Can Kohli replicate MSD's 2011 Wankhede show?

Prameyanews English

Published By : Prameya News Bureau | June 29, 2024 IST

Virat Kohli

Bridgetown (Barbados), June 29: India's most dependable batter in the current set-up Viral Kohli, appears a pale shadow of his enviable records and abilities, in the ongoing ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2024.

Unbelievable but true, Kohli is struggling but Team India have remained unbeatable in the T20 World Cup and reached the Final. Kohli has not hit a singly half century in the tournament. His highest score is 37 runs in 24 balls against Bangladesh.

The only other double digit score Kohli has managed is run-a-ball 24 against Afghanistan. India have played eight matches in the tournament prior to their Final against South Africa on Saturday including the Canada match, which was totally washed out.

Kohli has batted in 7 innings and not even once he has crossed the 50 mark and has never remained not out. His total score in seven innings is a meagre 75, which is very unlikely of his class and past records.

Kohli's scores against various oppositions in the tournament so far are -  1 in 5 balls against Ireland, 4 in 3 balls against arch rivals Pakistan, a golden duck (0 in 1 ball) versus USA, Canada match was washed out, 24 in 24 versus Afghanistan, 37 in 28 balls against Bangladesh, 0 in 5 balls against Australia and 9 in 9 balls versus England in the semi-final.

Considering his track record, he was expected to excel in the T20 World Cup 2024 as India have won all their matches and remained unbeaten in the tournament.

But former India cricketer Mohammad Kaif is sure that Kohli can come good in the all important Final against South Africa and fashion another famous Indian win in the summit clash.

Kaif reminds Kohli's critics that former India skipper Mahindra Singh Dhoni too never had a great score in the 2011 ODI Wold Cup prior to the final in Mumbai against Sri Lanka. 

But in the Final at Wankhede Stadium, Dhoni hammered an unbeaten 91 and finished India's chase with a huge six, as the hosts lifted the World Cup at home. 

Kaif reminded that like Dhoni, Kohll too can dominate any bowling attack. Dhoni's six over long-on off Sri Lanka bowler Nuwan Kulasekara is etched in everybody's mind, Kaif added. He was optimistic that Kohli can become a hero like Dhoni and script a memorable World Cup Final win for Team India.

Reminding Kohli of his great run against the Proteas in the past, Kaif added, he had hit a century when India last played South Africa in the ODI World Cup at Eden Gardens. He was brilliant that day and played very well, but he wasn't slogging at Eden but was playing the ball on merit with proper cricket shots. He can definitely replicate that again, Kaif was confident.

If Kaif's predictions come true then who knows, the Chase Master Kohli can script yet another famous Indian World Cup title win on Saturday in Bridgetown, Barbados. But Indian supporters would be praying that Kohli regains his old touch and helps India end the 11 year World Cup trophy drought.    

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