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Mirpur: Apr 4, 2014
Virat Kohli smashed India to the final of the ICC World T20 2014, with a blistering knock in the semi-final against South Africa at Dhaka on Friday. Kohli’s innings ensured that India sailed through with five balls to spare. However, with one needed off seven balls, skipper MS Dhoni patted the delivery to allow Kohli the opportunity to score the winning runs.
“Yes, he gave me the chance to hit the winning runs. He said “I can only give you this. This is my gift.” And I accepted it gratefully,” Kohli told reporters after India’s victory by six wickets in the second semi-final of the tournament.
When Kohli was asked if this was his best knock in T20 Internationals, he said that since it was an important game, it was one of his better innings. “Very happy to play a good innings in the semi-final. It was important to stay till the end as it will help the team win. There was pressurebut you don’t show it to the opposition. You shouldn’t give a world class bowling attack a chance.”
A major feature of Kohli’s innings was the way he handled Dale Steyn. He said, “He is a world class bowler. You aim to score off others. It is all about calculation.”
This was the first time India have conceded a total of over 130 and although the bowlers went for 172, Kohli complemented them and said that India have reached this far because of the bowlers. “We have reached the semi-finals because of the bowlers. They have kept oppositions to under 130 before this game. People talk about our spinners, but our fast bowlers have also done well,” Kohli said.
When asked if there was pressure in the mid innings break, Kohli said, “The dressing room was relaxed. There was no panic or tension. Everyone knew we needed one partnership.”
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