It was the end of a 1021 day wait. At the time, Virat Kohli, one of India’s most prolific scorers ever in cricket, could not survive a century. Before that drought came, Kohli scored 70 tons in international cricket. The wait for the 71st was long, but it’s finally over. Against Afghanistan in Thursday’s Asian Cup, Kohli eventually finished 122* from just 61 balls, which is India’s highest individual T20I score. He surpassed Rohit Sharma’s 118 against Sri Lanka in Indore in 2017. He has now also matched Ricky Ponting’s mark of 71 international centuries. Only Sachin Tendulkar (100) has scored more tons than Kohli and Ponting in international cricket.
After the century – his first ever in T20Is – Kohli celebrated in a special way.
Watch: Virat Kohli’s Celebration After India Scored the 71st Century
The long wait is finally coming to an end.
DP World #AsiaCup2022 #INDvAFG #BelieveInBlue #TeamIndia #KingKohli #71 pic.twitter.com/aypvxXYs6D
— Star Sports (@StarSportsIndia) September 8, 2022
The relief on his face was visible for all to see, and Kohli burst into a beaming smile as he took off his helmet.
He then kissed his wedding ring after raising his bat to the supporters and his dressing room.
Speaking of his celebration, Kohli said he dedicated his ton to wife Anushka and daughter Vamika.
“And I also kissed my ring during the celebration. You see me standing here because of all the things that have been put into perspective by one person, who has stood by me through all these difficult times – that is Anushka. This hundred is dedicated to her and also to our little daughter Vamika,” he said.
The moment was quite special for Kohli as he had been criticized for his form in recent months.
Kohli said his celebration was not one of his usual, “angry” celebrations after reaching the three-digit mark.
“The past two and a half years have taught me a lot. I will be 34 in November. So those celebrations are a thing of the past,” he said during the innings break.
“Actually I was a bit shocked. This was a format where I least expected a ton. I worked hard and this is a very special moment for me and also for the team,” said Kohli.
“It was an accumulation of a lot of things. The team was open and helpful. It gave me the space to work on my game. I know there were a lot of things going on on the outside. They kept my perspective good.”
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