Kohli modest after achieving record

India

Batsman Virat Kohli acknowledged relatively easy conditions – and a modest target – played a large role in India's six-wicket victory over the West Indies in Thursday's first ODI at the Nehru Stadium in Kochi.

Batsman Virat Kohli acknowledged relatively easy conditions – and a modest target – played a large role in India's six-wicket victory over the West Indies in Thursday's first ODI at the Nehru Stadium in Kochi.

The Windies' choice to bat first after winning the toss amounted to a mere 211 all out, as host spinners Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja and Suresh Raina shared eight key wickets. The latter was particularly telling, en route to figures of three for 34.

India's response was thorough and swift, screaming to triumph with all of 88 deliveries to spare on the back of Kohli's quickfire 86 and a commanding 72 from opener Rohit Sharma. Closing, unbeaten cameos from the left-handed Yuvraj Singh and captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni were ultimately at hand to complete the result.

"There was variable bounce on the wicket in the first innings. Compared to that, it was better in the second innings. But the wicket was slow and the ball was turning. It wasn't a flat batting wicket. It wasn't a free flow of runs. It was a low total which is why maybe we finished it earlier," said Kohli.

"If they had 260 or 270 on the board it would not have been easy to chase it down in the time we did. We just batted well. I don't think they bowled too badly. We hit percentage shots and did not try to slog the ball and didn't try to play shots that were not on the merit of the ball. It was more of good batting than indisciplined bowling. Credit goes to our batters."

An authoritative vigil, which featured nine boundaries and twin sixes and spanned a mere 84 deliveries, saw the talented Kohli equal former West Indian batsman Viv Richard's record as the fastest to reach 5,000 ODI runs. Both men achieved the feat in their 114th innings.

"I was told in Bangalore during the last ODI about the record, but I did not really remember it because I do not approach a game thinking about records. I said to myself that if you bat well, along the way these milestones are bound to happen," added Kohli.

"To equal a feat with a player like Richards is a very good feeling but it does not stop here because it is more or less the beginning. I am only 25 years old. It is nice to equal his record but still there is a long way to go."

The second ODI – in the three-match series – will get underway at Dr. Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium in Pothanamallayapalam, Visakhapatnam on Sunday.

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