There is little doubt that the Indian team will miss the services of their opener Shikhar Dhawan in the upcoming matches. What this also means is that the top order which consists of Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul and captain Virat Kohli will have to step up and take up the mantle, and this extra responsibility might just spur the skipper to peel off a century against Afghanistan.
Also, Kohli has an incentive or two when he steps out to bat against the Afghans. The Indian captain is 104 runs away from reaching 20,000 international runs. If he breaches the mark against Afghanistan, he will be the 12th batsman to this landmark and the 3rd Indian after Sachin Tendulkar (34,357 runs) and Rahul Dravid (24,208 runs) to do so.
Currently, he sits on 11,020 runs in ODIs, 6,613 in Tests and 2,263 runs in T20Is, and will be the fastest batsmen to reach 20,000 international runs in the world.
Sachin shares record with Brian Lara
Sachin Tendulkar shares this record with West Indies batting legend Brian Lara. Both Sachin and Lara had taken 453 innings to complete 20,000 international runs. The Indian skipper, on the other hand, has played only 415 innings so far – 131 in Tests, 222 in ODIs and 62 in T20Is. If he does get to this landmark, he will breeze past Tendulkar and Lara by a comprehensive margin.
The third on the list is former Australia World Cup-winning captain Ricky Ponting, who had taken 468 innings to get to the feat. It has to be said here that the Indian captain has not been at his best at the World Cup, but despite this has scores of Australia (82) and Pakistan (77) and now with the absence of Shikhar Dhawan, he could well get to the elusive triple digit mark against Afghanistan on Sunday.
In the match against Afghanistan, Australian opener David Warner slammed his 16th ODI hundred as he became only the second batsman to complete 16 ODI tons in 110 innings. Hashim Amla, who scored his 16th ODI century in 94 innings, holds the record for fewest innings to this feat.
Kohli has been winning hearts with his remarkable sportsman gesture. In the match against Australia, he prevented the Indian crowd from booing Steve Smith and instead, asked them to applaud the former Australian captain.
"It was a lovely gesture by Virat. It doesn't really bother me what the crowds do to be perfectly honest. I am just blocking it all out but it was a lovely gesture from him" Smith told reporters after Australia's victory against Sri Lanka.