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IPL 2021: Consistent Scorer, Majestic 2016, Anchor, Aggressor - Virat Kohli's Journey To 6000 IPL Runs

IPL 2021: Consistent Scorer, Majestic 2016, Anchor, Aggressor - Virat Kohli's Journey To 6000 IPL Runs

Virat Kohli became the first batsman in the history of the IPL to aggregate 6000 runs in the coveted league during his knock against the Royals in Mumbai.

Virat Kohli became the first batsman in IPL history to reach the landmark of 6000 IPL runs – a feat he achieved during his splendid match-winning knock of 72 off just 47 deliveries against the Rajasthan Royals in Mumbai. Kohli is one of the very few players in the IPL who has represented just one franchise throughout his career – the RCB. Loyal to the Bengaluru-based team for 14 years now, the Indian skipper has played many roles for them during this period – from anchor and accumulator in the middle order to an aggressive opener – he has been very consistent in getting the big runs for his franchise.

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2010 – The Birth of Kohli – the IPL batsman

Kohli has aggregated 400-plus in a season on as many as 7 occasions (in 13 completed editions) – this includes five times in the last seven years. After below-par performances in his first couple of editions, he excelled in the middle-order in 2010. Batting between 4 and 6, he played many cameos for RCB throughout the season. His two standout innings included 58 off 35 balls against the Deccan Chargers and 42 off 26 deliveries in a successful 181-run chase against Punjab Kings. The parameter which defined him in the season was his strike rate of 144.81. 2010 was the season in which Virat Kohli the IPL batsman first showed his prowess as a batsman and gave a glimpse of what was in store in the years to come.

2011 – Kohli The Big Run-Getter 

Kohli piled on the runs in 2011 amassing 557 runs in 16 matches at an average of 46.41 including four fifties. He was the second-highest scorer of the season after Chris Gayle (also of RCB). His remarkable consistency stood out in the season – Kohli registered 12 (in 16 innings) scores of 20-plus in 2011. Although his half-centuries were all high strike rate innings, overall he played within himself and scored at a rate of 121.08. All his high impact fifties came from number three or four and he played a leading role with the bat in taking RCB to the final where they lost to CSK.

2013 – Captain & Big Runs At A High Strike Rate

After a mediocre 2012, Kohli came back with a bang in 2013 returning as the third-highest run-getter of the edition with 634 runs in 16 matches. This was also the year when he became the full-fledged captain of the franchise. What stood out was the fact that for the very first time he had got the big runs at a high strike rate in the IPL. Kohli had a batting average of 45.28 and strike rate of 138.73 in the season including 6 fifties. He recorded two brilliant 90s in the season – 99 off 58 deliveries against Delhi Daredevils (now Delhi Capitals) and an unbeaten 93 off 47 deliveries in a successful chase against Sunrisers Hyderabad. 2013 was around the same time when Kohli had firmly established himself as one of the most sough after batsmen in international cricket.

2015 – Back To Playing Anchor & Kohli – the RCB Batsman vs Kohli – the India Batsman

Kohli again recorded 505 runs at an average of 45.9 in 2015 helping RCB in the playoffs but again largely played the role of the anchor. Interestingly, this is the role he has played for RCB in most seasons, which interestingly has been very different to what he does for India. He plays the role of the playmaker at number 3 for the country scoring big runs at a high strike rate. Kohli has an average of 52.65 and strike rate of 139.04 for India. Contrast this with his numbers for RCB – average of 38.35 and strike rate of 130.69 – there is a significant difference. Kohli – the RCB batsman had the likes of Chris Gayle and AB de Villiers to destruct the opposition line-up but for India, Kohli assumed that role himself. Also, as good a batsman he has been in the IPL, there is something special when Kohli plays for India – it fires him up and brings out the very best in him!

However, there have been exceptions for Kohli – the RCB batsman too. And none more majestic than 2016.

2016 – The Greatest Performance By A Batsman in IPL History

Kohli was in a different zone in 2016 when he opened the innings for RCB. He amassed the maximum runs by any batsman in any season in the history of the IPL aggregating a colossal 973 runs in 16 innings at a stunning rate of 152.03. He was phenomenally consistent and recorded 4 hundreds – again a record, and as many as 7 half-centuries in the edition.

Of his 11 fifty-plus scores in the tournament, as many as 8 came at a strike rate of above 140. What he achieved in the IPL in 2016 has seldom been achieved by any batsman in any league or tournament anywhere in the world. He took RCB to the final where they were beaten by Sunrisers Hyderabad. Some of his standout performances included 113 off 50 balls against Punjab Kings, 109 off 55 balls against Gujarat Lions and an unbeaten 108 off 58 balls against Rising Pune Supergiants.

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Kohli – The Partnership Man

2016 also saw Kohli record the highest partnership in IPL history – 229 with AB against the Gujarat Lions in Bengaluru. Remarkably, three of the four highest partnerships in the IPL feature King Kohli. He put an unbeaten 215, again with AB against Mumbai Indians in 2015 while partnering with Gayle for an undefeated 204-run stand against Delhi Capitals in 2012.

2018-2020 – Consistent Returns

Kohli was in fine form in 2018 and 2019 too. He scored 530 runs at a strike rate of 139.1 in 2018 while piling 464 runs in 2019 at a rate of 141.46. He scored in excess of 400 runs in 2020 in the UAE too but again in the role of the anchor – as his strike rate of 121.35 indicated.

Overall, Kohli has 5 hundreds in the IPL – the second-highest in IPL history after Gayle. He also has the second joint-highest number of 50-plus scores in the tournament – 45 along with Shikhar Dhawan. He has led RCB in 129 matches winning 59 of these encounters.

Kohli has again pushed himself to opening the innings for RCB in 2021. He started the tournament with a couple of measured 30s but showcased his destructive game against the Royals. High on confidence with four wins from as many matches, if he continues to play in the same vain for the remainder of the season we could be again witnessing something special.

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