Kochi: Virat Kohli slammed 86 in the first ODI against West Indies on Thursday to become the joint-fastest batsmen, with Vivian Richards, to reach the 5000-run mark. Both Kohli and Richards played 114 innings although the West Indies' legend featured in 126 matches, six more than Kohli.
Kohli - currently ranked the best ODI batsman, needed to score 81 runs in the match to match Richards' feat. A fluent shot over deep mid-wicket boundary helped the Delhi batsman complete the milestone - one appreciated by spectators at Kochi's Nehru Stadium. The Indian vice-captain - adjudged man-of-the-match - scored 86 runs with nine fours and two sixes before being dismissed by Jason Holder.
"I don't think too much when I am batting. I had already figured out how the pitch would behave when we were fielding," Kohli said at the post-match ceremony. " I just wanted to play as straight and late as I can close to the body. Started timing it well so it gave me confidence and kept me going from there," he said, adding that having a jam-packed stadium backing him helped.
The 25-year-old batsman has been in excellent form this year and last month, displaced South Africa's Hashim Amla from the top of the ODI rankings. He currently is leading the pack of ODI batsmen but has another Protean in AB de Villiers close on his heels.