Pune, Oct 12:
India captain Virat Kohli blended grace with determination to raise his record-breaking seventh double hundred which grinded down a hapless South Africa on the second day of the second Test, here on Friday.
With Kohli scoring a career-best unbeaten 254, India buried the Proteas under a mountain of runs, putting on board a mammoth 601 for five.
Kohli surpassed legendary Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag, who had scored six double tons each.
He also equalled Ricky Ponting’s record of 19 hundreds as Test skipper even though record belongs to Graeme Smith (25).
Ravindra Jadeja (91) also helped himself with some heavy duty hitting before missing out on his second Test hundred as Kohli declared immediately after his dismissal.
At stumps, South Africa were reeling at 36 for three as India aim to wrap the series up inside four days.
Umesh Yadav got rid of both the openers — Dean Elgar (6) and Aiden Markaram (0) — while Mohammed Shami saw the back of Temba Bavuma (8).
Kohli effortlessly shifted gears, toying with an attack which looked resigned after the first session as India took complete control.
In the first session, a beautiful straight drive off Vernon Philander brought up Indian captain’s 26th Test and 69th international hundred and the muted celebration was more about contentment than elation.
The final boundary count in his innings was an enviable 33 fours and two sixes in 336 balls. It was a marathon knock as he alone faced 56 off 156.3 overs bowled in India’s innings.
Kohli was an epitome of concentration and with dependable vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane (59) he raised a 178-run fourth wicket stand which broke the spirit of the Proteas attack.
The partnership of 225 runs with Jadeja in 39.1 overs was like adding insult to the injury.
Not for once did he look in any sort of hurry to complete the milestone as Kohli was ready to respect the good deliveries, slowly trudging his way to the coveted three-figure mark.
South Africa will certainly feel dejected as their bowlers put up a good show even though the scoreboard suggested otherwise.
Pune, Oct 12:
India’s batting mainstay Virat Kohli on Friday eclipsed Sir Don Bradman and Sachin Tendulkar while smashing a handful of records during his career-best knock of 254 in the ongoing second Test against South Africa here.
Kohli surpassed Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag by amassing a record seventh double hundred, the highest in Indian cricket history. Bradman tops the international list with 12 double tons in his illustrious career.
The Indian skipper, who now has 26 Test hundreds and 69 international tons (43 in ODIs), also went past Bradman’s Test tally of 6,996 runs.
The 30-year-old now has scored more than 7,000 Test runs since making his debut against the West Indies in 2011 to break into the top 50 Test run-scorers, a chart led by batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar (15,921 runs).
He has eclipsed Sri Lanka’s Sanath Jayasuriya, Australian Steve Smith and former England batsman Len Hutton (6,971) in the list of most Test runs.
During his unbeaten innings, Kohli had for a brief period of time also surpassed Bradman’s eight scores of 150 plus before reaching his double hundred.
Bradman had eight scores between 150 and 199 but had 12 double hundreds to his credit.
On way to his double ton on day two of the second Test against South Africa, Kohli also equalled former Australia skipper Ricky Ponting by scoring the most number of centuries as Test captain.
Both Kohli and Ponting now have a record 19 hundreds as a Test captain.
Kohli, who hit his overall 26th Test hundred on Friday, is joint second, while former South Africa captain Graeme Smith leads the list with 25 tons to his credit.
This is Kohli’s first hundred of this year, having scored two fifties in the eight innings that he has played in 2019.
The India skipper has also amassed 11,520 runs in 239 ODIs.