On the backdrop of his 75th international ton, taking a look at some of Virat Kohli’s most iconic centuries in Test cricket on Indian soil.
Former Indian skipper Virat Kohli brought an end to his over three-year-long century drought in Test cricket with a majestic knock of 186 runs in the first innings of the fourth Test against Australia in Ahmedabad. Prior to this, Kohli’s last ton in whites had come against Bangladesh at the Eden Gardens in November 2019.
Since then, a lot has changed for the batting talisman – having stepped down from captaincy in all three formats and also battling a really difficult phase of lean form. He finally reached his landmark 71st century in the Asia Cup against Afghanistan and has regained a lot of his touch ever since.
Best centuries by Virat Kohli in India
On that note, let us take a look at Kohli’s five best Test centuries in home soil so far.
1. 235 v England, 2016
Kohli was undergoing an absolute purple patch at the time of this innings and it reflected in the relentless manner in which he tore down the English bowling attack at the Wankhede Stadium in November 2016. With boundaries and a solitary six, Kohli made his 235 an impressive strike rate of 69.12 against a unit comprising the likes of James Anderson, Chris Woakes and Ben Stokes amongst others.
He stitched useful partnerships with Murali Vijay (135) and Jayant Yadav (104) and demonstrated terrific fitness standards by securing singles and doubles at will throughout the course of this marathon knock. India consequently ended up winning the game by an innings and 36 runs.
2. 254* v South Africa, 2019
India had completely rolled over the South African side in their tour to the country back in 2019. Virat Kohli’s 254* in Pune, which is till date his highest score in international cricket, was major contributing factor towards the same. With 33 boundaries and two maximums, Kohli played this humungous knock at a brilliant strike rate of 75.60.
He was unfazed by the pace trio of Kagiso Rabada, Vernon Philander and Anrich Nortje and found great support from Mayank Agarwal (108), Ajinkya Rahane (59) and Ravindra Jadeja (91). India declared after crossing the 600-run mark and post Jadeja’s dismissal, otherwise, this was an ideal opportunity for Kohli to even score his maiden triple ton for India.
3. 186 v Australia, 2023
The latest knock from Kohli finds the third spot in this list. On a placid surface in Ahmedabad, the 34-year-old spearheaded India’s pursuit of chasing down Australia’s mammoth 480 runs in the first innings. Unlike some other iconic innings of his, Kohli played this one at a lower strike rate of 51.10 with 15 boundaries.
He patiently bode his time, ran several singles and looked undeterred with everything that Australia threw at him in an eight-hour-long knock to help India secure a 91-run lead eventually. Will this mark the dawn of Kohli’s turnaround for a final phase of dominance in international cricket?
4. 107 v Australia, 2013
These were one of the early days in Kohli’s booming Test career and he notched a well-crafted century in Chennai in the first innings of the first Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in 2013. Australia had set up a formidable first-innings score of 380 runs and Kohli came into bat at a delicate stage with India’s score reading 105/3.
He, however, formed useful partnerships first with Sachin Tendulkar and then with MS Dhoni to help India secure a lead of 192 runs. Most of it was propelled with Dhoni’s inaugural double century in Test cricket but Kohli’s guile and resilience in tackling a decent Australian bowling unit garnered appreciation from all quarters.
5. 103 v New Zealand, 2012
Kohli’s maiden Test ton on Indian soil had come against New Zealand in Bengaluru in 2012. India were reduced to 67-3 after the Kiwis put up a total of 365 in the first innings. The home team eventually conceded a rare lead of 12 runs as Tim Southee picked seven wickets in that essay of play.
It was Kohli who along with Suresh Raina (55) demonstrated fine cricketing knowhow in manoeuvring the visitors’ bowling attack comprising Trent Boult and Douglas Bracewell partnering an in-form Southee. Batting at number five, Kohli got to his century with 14 boundaries and a solitary six in an innings that set the tone for the rest of his successful Test career.