Every great cricketer will have a ‘headline’ moment at the front end of their careers. You make the front page of the sports section, fellow cricketers notice your performance, and you are suddenly thrust into the limelight. Tendulkar’s innings at Perth set him apart, Laxman’s innings at Sydney showcased his brilliance, Dhoni’s 148 against Pakistan made him a superstar overnight, and the list goes on. Virat Kohli had already made quite an impact as a youngster, with his triumph at the under-19 World Cup in Malaysia, followed by good performances for Royal Challengers Bangalore and a World Cup medal to his name. But his ‘limelight’ moment came on 28th February 2012 when he made a mockery of the 320-run target against Sri Lanka at Hobart.
With India needing to chase down 320 in 40 overs to give themselves a chance at reaching the finals of the tri-series in Australia, Virat Kohli, well supported by the other batsmen, did it in just under 37 overs! The innings will always be remembered for the way he thrashed Lasith Malinga, arguably the best death bowler at the time, to all corners of the Bellerive Oval, including an over which went for 24 runs. He went on to score a magnificent 133* off just 86 balls with 16 boundaries and 2 sixes!
This knock was only the beginning of the ‘chasing machine’ Kohli has gone on to become over the years and at the age of 29, he is already considered a modern great. This innings that will surely be remembered as one of his best when he hangs up his boots.