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Kohli calls the shots

Bangalore: Virat Kohli led from the front with a breathtaking unbeaten 93 as Royal Challengers Bangalore thrashed Sunrisers Hyderabad by seven wickets in an Indian Premier League match, here, on Tuesday.

Chasing a target of 162, Kohli took Sunrisers bowlers to the cleaners as he single-handedly guided his team to victory, smashing 11 boundaries and four sixes off 47 balls. RCB reached home with 14 balls to spare. It was a sweet revenge for RCB, who had lost to Sunrisers in a Super Over two days back.

The match swung decisively in RCB’s favour in the 16th over, bowled by Amit Mishra, where Kohli smashed the spinner for 21 runs. This included two straight sixes. In the next over, bowled by Thisara Perera, he got another 16 runs to close in on the match. A couple of boundaries off the Ishant Sharma over sealed the issue.

That Moises Henriques scored only 7 in the 66-run fourth-wicket partnership would give one an idea of Virat’s domination.

The ploy to open the bowling with Hanuma Vihari failed miserably this time as Mayank Agarwal hit him for a four and a six in the first over itself. The local boy then pulled Ishant for a six over deep fine leg to get 15 runs from the over.

But the youngster paid the price for being over aggressive as he mistimed a pull-shot off a short delivery from Perera. Sunrisers captain Sangakkara took an easy catch.

Ishant, however, got the big wicket of Chris Gayle (13) as he bowled one that moved a shade after pitching and the Jamaican edged it to Parthiv Patel behind the stumps.

Kohli’s first scoring stroke was a boundary over mid-wicket off Perera. Along with AB de Villiers, he added 49 runs but the South African holed out to Hanuma off a Cameron White delivery.