Star India batter Virat Kohli on Sunday hit his 49th ODI century on his 35th birthday to equal the legendary Sachin Tendulkar’s tally of hundreds in the 50-over cricket, during his team’s World Cup 2023 match against South Africa at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
Continuing his brilliant form, kohli played some beautiful shots and reached his historic century in 119 balls. Overall, Virat has now scored 79 international centuries — one in T20Is and 29 in Tests.
While Virat got to his 49th hundred in his 289th ODI, great Tendulkar had scored his 49th century in the 462nd ODI of his career.
The 35-year-old Kohli earlier hit a ton in this World Cup when he smashed a last ball six against Bangladesh. Thereafter, he had come close to scoring centuries on two occasions but he was dismissed for 95 against New Zealand and then fell for 88 against Sri Lanka.
During his century knock against South Africa, Kohli also crossed 6000 ODI runs at home. He also overtook Sri Lanka’s Kumar Sangakkara to become the third-highest run-scorer in Men’s ODI World Cup.
The ‘chasemaster’ is now only behind his compatriot Sachin Tendulkar and Australia’s Ricky Ponting in the World Cup run-getters tally.
Riding on Kohli’s unbeaten 101, India posted a total of 326 for 5 in 50 overs on a challenging Kolkata pitch.
Earlier, Rohit Sharma won the toss and opted to bat first as India, who are the only undefeated side in the tournament, went in with the same XI for this match.
On the other hand, there was only one change in the South Africa setup, with Tabraiz Shamsi coming in for Gerald Coetzee.
India: Rohit Sharma (c), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (wk), Suryakumar Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Siraj.
South Africa: Quinton de Kock (wk), Temba Bavuma (c), Rassie van der Dussen, Aiden Markram, Heinrich Klaasen, David Miller, Marco Jansen, Keshav Maharaj, Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Tabraiz Shamsi.