In a dazzling display on the grand stage of the 2023 ICC ODI World Cup semi-final against New Zealand at the Wankhede Stadium Mumbai, Virat Kohli achieved a remarkable feat, scoring his 50th one-day international century. This outstanding performance unfolded with Kohli, in the presence of his idol Sachin Tendulkar, reaching the milestone in a World Cup knockout match.
Having already equaled Tendulkar’s record of 49 ODI centuries in the previous victory over South Africa at the Eden Gardens, Kohli’s century against New Zealand marked his first fifty-plus score in a World Cup knockout match. The magical moment occurred when he expertly played Lockie Ferguson to deep square leg, completing the century with a sprint, followed by a heartfelt bow to Tendulkar. The legendary cricketer led thousands of fans at his home ground in giving Kohli a standing ovation.
Kohli, in exceptional form throughout the tournament, surpassed another of Tendulkar’s records—the highest aggregate in a World Cup of 673 runs. His impressive tally of 711 runs in 10 games guided India to a formidable score after skipper Rohit Sharma won the toss and elected to bat.
The significance of the date adds an intriguing layer to Kohli’s achievement, as Tendulkar played his last ODI on November 15, 2013. Kohli’s innings, although cut short at 117 off 113 balls, showcased a triumphant turnaround in his World Cup knockout game performance. In his illustrious ODI career spanning 291 matches, Kohli boasts an aggregate of 13,794 runs with 50 centuries at an impressive average of 58.69.
Sachin posted his reaction on X during the innings break and it said so much about the bond they share.