Kohli's excellent innings fell short as India lost to England


In the 17th over Virat Kohli whipped a Chris Jordan delivery that followed him over Deep Square for six. Jordan couldn't help but smile in awe of the beautiful shot. His excellent innings however couldn't give India a win.

His performance reflected magnificent field awareness. Batting against England's best bowler - Mark Wood - in the 18th over, Kohli knew Wood would bowl back of a length, so he walked across the stumps and went in for a six to get to his half-century. 

This is the first time since the 2016 T20 World Cup that he scored an unbeaten 73 in the second T20I and an unbeaten 77 in the third. Kohli came in at No. 4 to accommodate Ishan Kishan at No. 3 with Rohit Sharma at the top. India lost a lot of wickets in the powerplay and was struggling to keep going. India was at 86 for 5 when Shreyas Iyer left in the 15th over. 

Pandya struggled to hit through the line, but Kohli increased his strike-rate two-fold once he's faced 30 balls. He scored 49 runs on his next 17 balls as India finished with 156 on the board.

England's pacers extracted extra bounce on the wicket as India had a poor powerplay (24 for 3). Rishabh Pant played in partnership with his skipper to score against legspinner Adil Rashid. But confusion on the pitch made him leave, with Kohli to play as the anchor, once again. 

"You don't want to play knocks which don't help the team in any way," said Kohli in the post-game interaction. "Tonight, it was a bit difficult to bat against the new ball. It was a bit tacky, and the bowlers were getting a bit of assistance. Yes, they do have extra space as well and that made it more difficult but they were hitting good areas. The key was getting partnerships. We got one little partnership and then towards the end with Hardik as well. It was important for me to bat deep into the innings because I knew that it would be easier for the set batsman to read the pace and bounce of the wicket and put pressure on the bowlers. The case was to get set and try and get us to a decent total."

Once Kohli got accustomed to the extra pace, he extracted 56 runs in the last four overs. Wood bowled well, hitting the wicket hard and using the short ball to keep India in check. The other bowlers ensured that India's run-rate never went over six. But that lasted until the 15th over.

Kohli playing as the anchor can be sustainable if there is a hitter at the other end, like Ishan Kishan. He took on the role of the aggressor for India. Though there is the probability of falling short as they did in their eight-wicket loss, despite Kohli performing well.