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ICC World Twenty20: Virat Kohli better than Brian Lara, says Ian Chappell

India Today logo India Today 29-03-2016

Virat Kohli's masterly 82 against Australia in a must-win ICC World Twenty20 game for India floored former Aussie captain Ian Chappell, who called the Indian run-machine the 'finisher for all time.'

Kohli hammered an unbeaten 82 off 51 balls as India defeated Australia by six wickets to book a place in semi-finals of the World T20.

"Of modern players, Brian Lara, I thought was the best placer of the ball. I think I have got Brian in the second spot now," Chappell told ESPNCricinfo in his post-match analysis after Kohli's classic 82 not out took India to the semi-finals of the ICC World T20 beating Australia.

"This is the best T20 innings I have ever seen. He is the finisher for all time. He had built a reputation out and on Sunday, he just cemented that. It was exhilarating," Chappell was all praise for Kohli's epic knock.

"I hate to remind Mahela (Jayawardene) that I had the pleasure of watching Virat chase down a 300 plus score (321 in 36.4 overs vs Sri Lanka at Hobart). I never thought someone could better that while chasing."

Chappell said that he has seen some great batsmen gifted with supple wrists but not someone with such enormous power.

"I have seen wristy players like Azharuddin, VVS (Laxman) or had the pleasure or pain of playing against Zaheer Abbas.

"Zaheer had rubber wrists but Virat does it with power. He hits the ball hard with that wrist-work. There were times during the match when I thought the 'predictor' had gone wrong but then I realised that I was mad and the 'predictor' was right," said Chappell.

Chappell also said that Australia's Michael Bevan, who was known as a 'finisher' in the 50-overs format during the 1990's and early part of 2000 did not carry the kind of burden that the Indian superstar carries.

"He (Virat) is called a finisher and there is a reason why. Michael Bevan was known as a finisher and he did it in a few short overs. But this man comes in at No. 3 and does it for such long periods," said Chappell.

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