Mohali, March 28: Describing Virat Kohli's knock against Australia last night (March 27) as "hailstorm in Mohali", India's leading spinner Ravichandran Ashwin has put the innings on par with Sachin Tendulkar's "sandstorm in Sharjah".
At the PCA Stadium in Mohali, Australia were knocked out of the ICC World Twenty20 after Kohli's masterclass of 82 not out. India successfully chased 161 with 6 wickets and 5 balls to spare. (Kohli breaks Gayle record)
Thanks to Kohli's innings, India entered the semi-finals and will now face West Indies on March 31 in Mumbai.
Ashwin, who was part of the team in Mohali and enjoyed the innings from the dug-out, compared Kohli's knock to Tendulkar's famous One Day International innings against the same opposition in Sharjah in April 1998.
On that night in Sharjah, Tendulkar smashed a 131-ball 143 (9x4, 5x6) as an opener to take India to the final of the Coca-Cola Cup. Though India lost the game by 26 runs, Tendulkar helped the team reach the final on a better net run rate than New Zealand.
During the Indian innings a sand storm had halted play and the target had to be revised due to this (276 from 46 overs). India ended up with 250/5 in 46 overs. Earlier, Australia had scored 284/7 in 50 overs.
Tendulkar, on his 25th birthday, was again at his best in the final, blasting 134 off 131 with 12 fours and 3 sixes as India won the trophy beating Australia by 6 wickets.
Calling Kohli as "chase master", Ashwin hailed the Delhi batsman's heroics.
"Sandstorm from sachin at Sharjah, and the hailstorm in Mohali from @imVkohli should be written in the same paragraph. #chasemaster," Ashwin wrote on his Twitter page after the victory.
Batting legend Tendulkar himself called Kohli's innings as "special". He wrote on his Twitter account, "Woooow @imVkohli ...special it was... Great win, fighting all the way! #IndvsAus."