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Cricket
Kohli smacks another century for India
India produce record run chase against Pakistan in the Asia Cup with Virat Kohli continuing great form with 183 runs.
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2012 19:02
Suresh Raina (L) and captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni (R) congratulate Virat Kohli (C) after his superb knock [AFP]

Virat Kohli smashed a blistering 183 off 148 balls as India produced their highest ever run chase to beat Pakistan by six-wickets on Sunday and keep alive their hopes of reaching the Asia Cup final.

Chasing a daunting total of 330, India pulled off a thrilling victory with 13 balls to spare thanks to Kohli, who notched up his third one-day century in four matches.

Rohit Sharma (68) and Sachin Tendulkar (52) also chipped in as India surpassed their previous highest successful run chase of 326-8 against England in 2002.

Kolhi belted 22 boundaries and one six while Tendulkar and Sharma also clobbered the Pakistani bowlers, with each hitting five fours and a six.

Pakistan qualified for Thursday's final despite losing to India as they had earlier registered wins against Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, earning a bonus point in the process.

India must now hope Sri Lanka, who have already been eliminated, beat Bangladesh in the final round robin match on
Tuesday if they are to go through to the final.

India's Asia Cup campaign suffered a setback following their shock five-wicket defeat by Bangladesh on Friday, meaning that the hosts will go through to the final if they beat Sri Lanka as head-to-head results are taken into account before net run rate.

Calling on Kohli

India's dazzling batting display on Sunday completely overshadowed the 224-run opening partnership by Pakistan's Nasir Jamshed (112) and Mohammad Hafeez (105).

The duo looked to have put the match out of India's reach as they could not be separated until the 36th over. Jamshed was the first to fall after he tried to hoist a Ravichandran Ashwin delivery over the boundary but instead found Irfan Pathan, who was fortunate not to drop the catch.

Hafeez was trapped lbw by pace bowler Ashok Dinda just three balls later but not before the duo had laid the foundations for Pakistan to post 329-6 from their 50 overs.

When opener Gautam Gambhir perished for a duck in the second ball of the Indian innings, it seemed as if Pakistan would be soon celebrating a quick victory.

Kohli had other ideas.

The 23-year-old shared a 133-run second-wicket partnership with Tendulkar and both players produced a flurry of boundaries to ensure India were on top of the required run rate.

Tendulkar, who completed an unprecedented 100 international centuries against Bangladesh on Friday, was foxed by a doosra off Sajeed Ajmal and was caught by Younus Khan at slip.

Kohli, dropped by wicketkeeper Umar Akmal on two, punished the Pakistan bowlers for the let off and added a further 172 runs with Sharma to put India firmly in control.

Kohli was finally dismissed in the 48th over after edging a Umar Gul delivery to Hafeez but by then India were 12 runs short of their target and they easily knocked off the remaining runs.

Source:
Reuters
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