Virat Kohli failed to score big in India’s Asia Cup 2023 opener against Pakistanat Pallekele on Saturday as the veteran batter was dismissed for only four runs off the bowling of Shaheen Afridi. Kohli, coming to bat at the fall of Rohit Sharma’s wicket, who suffered a similar fate, struck a cracking four before falling to a delivery from Shaheen that stayed a tad low. Kohli, trying to push the ball through off side while opening the face of his blade, chopped it back (IND vs PAK Asia Cup 2023 Live Score)
After the match resumed due to rain delay in the fifth over, India got off to a stuttering restart, losing captain Rohit in the final delivery of the fifth over. Receiving a length ball from Shaheen, Rohit failed to connect as it nipped past his defence and crashed on to the off-stump. Rohit could only look in dismay as he walked back to the pavilion with India 15/1 in five overs.
After Rohit’s departure, Kohli arrived, with much of the expectations lying on his shoulders. The former India captain smashed a four through the covers against Naseem Shah. But in the seventh over of the innings, Pakistan captain Babar Azam brought Shaheen, the leader of their pace attack, back for another over. He conceded a single off Shubman Gill in the first ball, followed by a dot ball against Kohli. But then off the third, Shaheen silenced Kohli with a sensational delivery. Left-arm woes came back to haunt India with Shaheen shredding India’s top order.
Kohli’s reaction summed up the dismissal, as he walked back in utter disbelief. Such was the impact of the dismissal, that even Pakistan legend Waqar Younis, while commentating on air, roasted Kohli and said: “You can watch it on replay, but you’re gone Virat.”
Here is the video of Kohli’s dismissal:
For their Asia Cup opener, India fielded two spinners in Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja. Meanwhile, Rohit also went with three pacers, including jasprit bumrahwho made his comeback in the recent Ireland T20Is. Meanwhile, Shreyas Iyer made his return after a lengthy absence due to injury and Shardul Thakur replaced Mohammed Shami.
Speaking about his team’s objective in the tournament, which also serves as a preparatory event for the upcoming ODI World Cup, Rohit said after toss, “Got to play good cricket, you need to embrace the challenge, embrace the situation. We had some time off after the West Indies series. Everyone was up for those drills and challenges in Bangalore. Let’s see what we can achieve in this tournament. It’s a quality tournament with quality oppositions. At the end of the day we need to see what we can achieve as a team.”