Virat Kohli found some sort of form as he knocked his way to a 53-ball 58 against the Gujarat Titans at the Brabourne Stadium, Mumbai on Saturday. The former Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper helped his team post 170 runs. 

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Kohli’s half-century, his first of IPL 2022, came in 45 balls. The 33-year-old, who hasn’t scored a century since 2019, raised his bat, looked up at the heavens as his family and team members stood on their feet applauding. The fifty has come after 15 innings and it sure meant a lot to the batter. 

He was bowled overs later by Mohammed Shami. The Gujarat pacer delivered an almost perfect off-stump yorker to get rid of Virat Kohli, who missed it completely. 

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Shami had won hearts earlier when he reached Kohli, patted his back, acknowledging the importance of the 50-run knock. It is almost poetic how the pacer dismissed him balls later. 

Kohli and Shami’s camaraderie goes way back. The then-India skipper stood out for the star bowler when he was abused, based on religion, on social media after India’s 10-wicket loss to Pakistan in the team’s T20 World Cup opener last year. 

“There’s a good reason why we are playing on the field and not some bunch of spineless people on social media that have no courage to actually speak to any individual in person. They hide behind their identities and go after people through social media, making fun of people and that has become a social entertainment in today’s world, which is so unfortunate and so sad to see,” Kohli said at a press conference.

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“This is literally the lowest level of human potential that one can operate at and that’s how I look at these people,” he added. 

Virat Kohli supported Shami when the pacer was down and the latter gave it back when the former has been facing pressure due to a run rut. 

The 58-run knock came at the lowest strike rate for Kohli in IPL in a fifty-plus innings. 

Here is a list:

109.43 vs GT Mumbai BS 2022 (58 off 53)

114.58 vs RPS Pune 2017 (55 off 48)

116.28 vs CSK Dubai 2020 (50 off 43)

 Kohli and Rajat Patidar added 99 runs for the second wicket. The young opener scored 52 runs in 32 balls. Glenn Maxwell played a cameo, scoring 33 off 18 balls.

For Titans, Pradeep Sangwan was the best bowler with figures of 2 for 19 from 4 overs.

Brief Scores: Royal Challengers Bangalore 170 for 6 (Virat Kohli 58 off 53 balls, Rajat Patidar 52 off 32 balls, Pradeep Sangwan 2/19) vs GT.