Australia unearth King Kohli’s kryptonite

Indian captain Virat Kohli is arguably the best short-format batsman in history.

The 31-year-old has scored 43 centuries in 234 ODI innings at an impeccable average of 59.61. Only the legendary Sachin Tendulkar has managed more triple-figure scores, with 49 centuries in 452 innings.

Australia’s bowlers have struggled to tame Kohli in one-day cricket. Collectively, the pace quartet of Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins and Kane Richardson have only removed the Indian captain twice in ODIs.

In fact, none of Australia’s pacemen in the current squad have ever dismissed Kohli for less than 106 in ODI cricket.

India’s Virat Kohli averages 59.61 in ODI cricket, the second-highest in history.Source:AFP

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Kohli feasts on Australia’s pace bowlers — although Starc has the best ODI strike rate in history, the left-armer is yet to claim the prized wicket of King Kohli.

However, just as the New Zealanders did with Steve Smith this summer, Australia have unearthed one minor flaw in Kohli’s batting which could tame the batting powerhouse.

Batting at No. 4 during Tuesday’s match, the Indian captain was threatening to inflict more misery, until Adam Zampa expertly removed Kohli caught and bowled for 16.

Zampa has now dismissed Kohli four times in ODIs, more than any other Australian bowler.

The leg spinner has also claimed Kohli’s wicket twice in T20 internationals, again the most for any Australian.

6️⃣ and OUT for Virat Kohli! ☝️

Adam #Zampa takes a brilliant reflex catch after the Indian skipper smoked it straight back at him. #Kohli gone for 16 off 14 and India are in a spot of bother.#INDvAUS live blog:

Spinners dismissing Kohli most times in ODIs:

4 :Adam Zampa*
4 : Suraj Randiv
4 : Graeme Swann #INDvAUS

Kohli falls to Zampa once again…for the 4th time in the ODIs. No spinner has dismissed Kohli more than 4 times in the ODIs.

The best ball ever bowled to Kohli in the ODIs is also from a leggie. When Adil Rashid cleaned up Kohli. #INDvAUS

Zampa entered last year’s Cricket World Cup as Australia’s strike spin bowler, but the South Australian tweaker was replaced by Nathan Lyon after a shocking performance against India, where his six wicketless overs conceded 50 runs.

“In that whole World Cup we expected drier conditions than we had. Particularly with the weather we had there,” Zampa said.

“Last time we played India in India the wickets were quite dry and spun a bit. During the World Cup it wasn’t really the case.

“The Indians are the best players in the world, particularly of spin so being a leg spinner you can’t be too hard on yourself.”

Australia’s Adam Zampa has an ODI bowling average of 36.35.Source:AFP

Chosen ahead of Lyon for this tour of India, Zampa dismissed the world’s greatest one-day batsmen for the fourth time in twelve months, continuing his impeccable form in the subcontinent.

Zampa, the highest ODI wicket-taker in 2016, enjoyed one of the best series of his career against India last summer, with 11 wickets at 25.81 in Australia’s 3-2 success.

“When he gets it right he’s as damaging as any leg spinner in the world,” Australian captain Aaron Finch said before Tuesday’s match.

“The great thing about him is (his) ability to bowl in all phases of the game.

“We saw the impact he had last series over here. He was able to get key wickets at crucial times.

“Really excited for what he can produce in this series as well.”

Zampa had been smacked over his head for six the delivery before dismissing Kohli, a trait the Indian captain acknowledged before the series.

“Even when he was hit for boundaries he kept coming at the batsmen, which I think is important for a wrist-spinner”, Kohli said.

“His mindset was a standout. He made those important breakthroughs.”

Mitchell Starc was Australia’s best bowler in the first ODI against IndiaSource:AP

Zampa finished the innings with figures of 1/53 from ten overs. Although this may seem mediocre on paper, that singular wicket is priceless for the Australians.

India were bowled out for 255 at Mumbai, opening batsman Shikhar Dhawan top scoring with 74. Starc was the chief destroyer with the ball, claiming 3/56 from ten overs.

With AAP

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