New Delhi: Ace India skipper Virat Kohli started the five-match ODI series against Sri Lanka with a stunning unbeaten half-century which has put him within touching distance of yet another milestone in One Day Internationals.
Kohli slammed 82* off just 70 deliveries and put on a scintillating 197-run partnership with centurion Shikhar Dhawan to help the visitors take a 1-0 lead in the series.
With the help of this innings, Kohli is now just 45 runs behind South African skipper Faf Du Plessis and 16 runs behind England stalwart Joe Root in the list of most runs scored in this calendar year. Kohli 82* not-out helped him overtake Eoin Morgan into the top three of this elite list.
Kohli has now scored 769 runs in 14 matches this year while Du Plessis has scored 814 (16 matches) and Root 785 (14 matches). However, Kohli's average is the best amongst the three as he has hit these runs at an astounding average of 96.1 compared to Root's 71.3 and Du Plessis' 58.1.
With four ODIs left in the series, Kohli is perfectly placed to overtake these two greats of modern day cricket as the leading run-scorer of the year. And with England not playing the 50-over format until September 19 (against West Indies) and South Africa not playing ODIs until October 15 (against Bangladesh), Kohli can keep his place at the top for sometime.
Also, just to illustrate how good Kohli has been in ODIs recently, let's look at his run-scoring heroics when India is chasing a target. In past seven innings, Kohli has slammed 726 runs which included three centuries and four-half centuries when India is going after a target.
The India skipper will look continue his run-scoring form in the upcoming ODIs against Sri Lanka as well. The Men in Blue play the second ODI against the Islanders at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium in Kandy on Thursday.
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