New Delhi | Jagran Sports Desk: Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper Virat Kohli became the first player to appear in 200 matches for a single franchise in the T-20 cricket when he came out to bat against Kings XI Punjab in game 31 of the Indian Premier League 2020 in Sharjah.

Kohli has played 186 matches for Royal Challengers Bangalore in the IPL and 14 in Champions League since 2008. Reacting to the achievement, Kohli said at the toss that it is an honour for him to be retained by Royal Challengers Bangalore for thirteen years. 

“RCB means a lot, not many understand that emotion. 200 for them is unbelievable. I wouldn’t have believed it in 2008. It is an honour, they’ve kept me and I have stayed on,” Kohli said after winning the toss and opting to bat first against Punjab. 

Kohli is followed in the record by English player James Hildreth, who played 196 matches for Somerset.

The RCB skipper was left short of scoring a half-century in his 200th match. Opting to bat first, Royal Challengers Bangalore got of to a decent start but lost both openers by the seventh over. Virat Kohli took charge of the innings in the middle overs, before being dismissed by Mohammed Shami in the 18th over of the match. A flurry of sixes by Chris Morris propelled the team to a respectable total of 171. 

Chasing 172, Punjab got off to an excellent start, with openers KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal bringing up 50-run stand inside powerplay. The run-chase briefly went off the track in the middle over, but a flurry of sixes by Chris Gayle and Rahul put the pressure back on Bangalore. Gayle was run-out on the penultimate ball of the innings and the match could have gone into super over, but Nicholas Pooran lofted the final delivery over long on for a six.

Posted By: Lakshay Raja