Asia Cup 2022: India beat Afghanistan after Kohli’s century, Bhuvi’s five-wicket haul

Kohli equals Australian legend Ricky Ponting with 71st century


Rituraj Borkakoty

Published: Thu 8 Sep 2022, 9:13 PM

Last updated: Thu 8 Sep 2022, 9:15 PM

Indian superstar Virat Kohli finally ended his almost three-year-long century drought with a majestic 122 off 62 balls against Afghanistan in the Asia Cup match in Dubai on Thursday.

India, on the back of Kohli’s brilliance, made 212 for two in 20 overs after Afghanistan captain Mohammad Nabi won the toss and elected to bowl at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.

In reply, the Bhuvneshwar Kumar-inspired bowling attack restricted Afghans to 111 for eight as India bowed out of the tournament with a 101- run victory.

Pace bowler Kumar produced a devastating spell with the new ball as he returned with figures of 4-1-4-5.

But the day clearly belonged to Kohli.

It was Kohli's first century in T20 international cricket. He has equalled Australian legend Ricky Ponting with his 71st century in international cricket across formats.

Only Sachin Tendulkar is ahead of Kohli and Ponting on the list of international centuries with 100 three-figure knocks.

Among the active players, Joe Root (44) and David Warner (43) are second and third on the list after Kohli.

Kohli's last century came against Bangladesh on November 22, 2019, in a Test match.

The 33-year-old player had been under tremendous pressure due to his prolonged lean phase with the bat.

But on Thursday against Afghanistan, Kohli finally found his best form as he put the Afghan bowlers to the sword.

Kohli (122 not out, 61 balls, 12 fours, 6 sixes) looked in splendid touch on Thursday and shared a fantastic 119-run opening partnership with stand-in captain KL Rahul (62, 41 balls, 6 fours, 2 sixes).

It was Rahul’s first half-century since his return from an injury layoff as he showed impressive touch with the bat in the absence of regular captain Rohit Sharma, who was rested for the game.

Both India and Afghanistan had already been knocked out of the race for the Asia Cup final after the latter’s defeat to Pakistan by one-wicket in a low-scoring thriller in Sharjah.

Brief scores: India beat Afghanistan by runs.

India 212 for two in 20 overs (Kohli 122, Rahul 62, Pant 20 not out; fareed Ahmed 2/57)

Afghanistan Afghans to 111 for eight in 20 overs (Zadran 64 not out; Kumar 5/4)

More news from Cricket