With 28 needed from the last 8 balls, India had a daunting task at hand, but Kohli conjured two shots that will be talked about for a long time.
One was a straight-bat six over the bowler’s head and the next was a slap over fine leg under extreme pressure. This brought the equation down to a very achievable 16 off the last over.
India achieved a famous victory in the last ball of the match.
Hardik, who watched Kohli’s mastery from the other end, looked back on those special sixes.
“I’ve hit a lot of sixes but it’s special, special and really special in my heart now because of what (it) meant to both of us. I’ve played cricket, so much cricket, but I don’t think anyone could do that played two strokes apart from Kohli,” Hardik told the BCCI website while sitting next to Kohli.
From special knocks, game-changing sixes and thrilling victory at the MCG! 👌 💪Special: Men of the Moment – @imVkohli… https://t.co/WogPjSY3f3
— BCCI (@BCCI) 1666587364000
“The best part of what I liked about him (doing it) is we struggled, bro. What made it so special was we struggled together. It wouldn’t have been as special if we just crossed over .
“You would have played exceptional shots, I would have been (in the flow) … It was special because we knew we were struggling.”
The star all-rounder also played a crucial role with bat and ball to bring India back from the dead.
Kohli and Hardik came together as India reeled at 31 for four with India needing 129 off 83 balls against a high-quality bowling attack.
Hardik spoke about his mindset as he stepped into the middle.
“I felt a lot of pressure in the group. With all due respect, a lot of people in big games (feel pressure) and (know) how important it is. We all worked very hard as a collective, and people are happy for each other.
“But for me, I don’t know, I was very numb today. Even when I came to the ground I was very happy and I also spoke to Rahul (Dravid) sir initially, I wouldn’t say he was tense but he told me, ‘you’ve done a lot of things’, and ‘keep calm’ and all that.
“I had to tell him: ‘Sir, please understand I’m happy to be here. Ten months back I was working in my space and I had no idea and this is where I wanted to be, irrelevant of what was happening . Just happy to be here and play with all the best cricketers in the world, and they are my brothers.”
I would have taken a bullet for you at that time: Hardik to Kohli
Hardik and Kohli ended up sharing a match winning 113 runs from 78 balls. The versatile star got emotional while narrating the sequence of events.
“The quality relationship I have with this group is something I cherish and always cherish. When I came in (to bat), at that time I would have taken a bullet for you (Kohli), I would not have let you up come out at that time.
“My aim was simple: whatever I can to make your life easy because you have done it over the years in important matches. No one is better at handling pressure than you,” Hardik said in his reply to a said question of Kohli.