3rd ODI : Mindset is to help the team, and put the team in strong position : Virat Kohli

Thiruvananthapuram : After winning the Player of the Match for his 166 not out as well as the Player of the Series award in India’s 3-0 triumph over Sri Lanka, talismanic batter Virat Kohli said his mindset is to help put the team in a strong position in the format.

On a slow yet placid pitch at the Greenfield International Stadium, Kohli was off the blocks quickly and anchored the innings for a large part to be unbeaten on 166 not out off 110 balls, his tenth hundred against Sri Lanka.

In his third century in the last four ODI innings, Kohli hit 13 fours and eight sixes, feasting on a hapless bowling attack. In the last ten overs, he fetched 84 out of the 116 runs India scored to literally bat Sri Lanka out of the match.

He also shared a 131-run partnership with Shubman Gill, who was stylish in his 116 off 97 balls, hitting 14 fours and two sixes, and propel India to a mammoth 390/5. Kohli was the top run-scorer of the series, making 283 runs in three innings at an average of 141.50 and strike rate of 137.37, making centuries in Guwahati and Thiruvananthapuram.

“It is the by-product of the intent I have. The mindset is to help the team and put the team in strong position. I have played for the right reasons and that has helped. Ever since I came back from the break, I am feeling good and I don’t have desperation to get to a milestone.”

“I want to continue doing that and am content. Today I was happy to be batting out there and in that space, I end up playing good cricket. I am in a nice space right now, just be organic,” he said in the post-match presentation ceremony.

Kohli also had words of praise for Mohammed Siraj, who got the ball to move around to run through the Sri Lanka top-order and pick his career-best figures of 4-32 in ten overs as they crashed to 73 all out in 22 overs.

“Shami has always been there for us with the new ball. But the way Siraj has come in and done with the new ball has been fantastic. He picks wickets in the powerplay, which was an issue in the past.

It is a great sign for us heading into the World Cup,” he added. On his part, Siraj could have had got his maiden five-fer in ODIs, which didn’t happen after Kasun Rajitha got to overturn an lbw decision.

“I was trying hard to pick up a five-for but you get only what is written in your destiny, however hard you try.” “My rhythm has been good for a long time. The outswinger has been working well and I try to slip in the wobble-seam delivery.

The captain tried hard that I should get a five-for.” The next assignment for India in their home season is three ODIs against New Zealand, starting from Wednesday in Hyderabad.

 

 

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