When a 19-year-old Virat Kohli made his debut for the national team ten years back, there were talks of the Delhi boy making it big in international cricket. As the 2011 World Cup drew closer, it was evident that a new shining star had made his presence felt in 'Men in Blue' dressing room. Now, Kohli has 33 ODI centuries with his latest coming against South Africa, helping India take a 1-0 lead in the 5 match series. India's spin twins Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal helped restrict the Proteas to 269/8. However, Kohli's century and Ajinkya Rahane's 79 is what allowed India to jog to a victory with 27 balls to spare.
Talking about ODI’s, the century at Durban is special for the skipper and marks a unique record. With this ton, Kohli has played in nine countries, all full-members and has centuries in all the nations. The full-time members are the countries recognized ICC to play Test matches. The only other players to score centuries in all nine of the first ten full-member nations are Sachin Tendulkar and Sanath Jayasuriya. While Sachin missed it at West Indies, Jayasuriya could not score one in Zimbabwe and Kohli has one more to go.
Virat Kohli has not yet played in the neighboring country Pakistan where Sachin and Sanath have had the advantage. India has stalled matches of any form against Pakistan on their home soil since 2006 over terrorism fears. India meets the Pakistan team only during group series that take place on neutral venues. Barring events that are out of his control, Virat’s record has already surpassed the two legends in all the other countries. Currently, among players who are still playing the game, Virat now has the highest number of one day international hundreds (54), a record which he holds with South Africa’s Hashim Amla.
Notably, this was Kohli’s 11th hundred as skipper and he has now joined Sourav Ganguly with the most ODI hundreds as Indian captain. He also joined Ricky Ponting and Stephen Fleming as a captain to register a century in ODIs and Tests in South Africa. Interestingly, Sourav Ganguly has 5 centuries in South Africa.
Even as the country cheered Virat’s unbeaten 112 of 119 runs, his partner, and wife Anushka Sharma couldn’t hold in her excitement as she took to social media to cheer her man.
Kohli has 14 centuries in India, 5 in Bangladesh and 4 in Australia and Sri Lanka, 2 in West Indies while he has 1 each in England, New Zealand, South Africa and Zimbabwe.