The International Cricket Council’s (ICC) poster on struggling Virat Kohli ahead of Team India’s summit clash against South Africa in the T20 World Cup on Saturday broke the internet.

“The last jewel remains missing from the crown of the king. Virat Kohli is one step away from T20 World Cup glory,” the ICC posted on X.

It is worth remembering that Virat Kohli has never won the T20 World Cup in his illustrious career and a triumph against the Proteas will complete his trophy cabinet which includes the 2011 ODI World Cup, 2013 Champions Trophy, and the Test Mace.

Fans were quick to react to the ICC’s tweet.

“Kohli, the greatest of all time, will step up and deliver an unforgettable innings in the finals,” a fan wrote on the microblogging platform.

“This time Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli are destined to lift the T20 World Cup trophy together,” another stated.

For the uninitiated, Virat Kohli has scored just 75 runs in seven outings in the elite tournament, including Thursday’s semifinal against England.

He was dismissed for nine by Reece Topley in the third over of the Indian innings as his disastrous campaign in the 2024 T20 World Cup continued against the Three Lions.

After Jos Buttler decided to field first, Virat Kohli joined his captain, Rohit Sharma, at the top of the order, with hopes from the Delhi-born cricketer running high, especially after six consecutive failures in the prestigious International Cricket Council (ICC) event.

Furthermore, England had beaten India in the semi-final of the last edition of the T20 World Cup in Australia in 2022, and the Men in Blue were all geared up to avenge that loss, everyone was expecting Virat Kohli to unleash his magic on the ground since he is a big-match player.

However, it didn’t happen because Virat Kohli lost his leg stump when he tried to smash Reece Topley out of the park after an earlier hit for a six in the over.

His fall, this time around, was due to his efforts to up the tempo after a slow start.

In the previous game against Australia, Virat Kohli miscued a Josh Hazlewood delivery in the second over of the Indian innings. The ball went high in the air before it was comfortably taken by Australian wicketkeeper Tim David behind the stumps.

This was the second time in this year’s edition of the T20 World Cup that Virat Kohli has been dismissed for naught. During the group stage of the tournament, USA’s Saurabh Netravalkar sent him packing without troubling the scorers – his maiden Golden duck in the competition.

With his zero against Australia, Virat Kohli joined Ashish Nehra in an unwanted list of Indian players, who have made two ducks in a single edition of the T20 World Cup. Ashish Nehra accomplished the forgetful feat during the 2010 T20 World Cup.

The former India captain has had an agonizing 2024 T20 World Cup, to say the least.

The 35-year-old batter began his campaign in the top international T20 World Cup with a score of 1 against Ireland before failing miserably against arch-rivals Pakistan, where he was dismissed for 4.

Interestingly, it was his lowest score against the Green Army in the T20 World Cup.

In the third match for the Men in Blue in the tournament, Saurabh Netravalkar, who once represented India in the U-19 World Cup, ended Virat Kohli’s plans of rejuvenation, showing him the path to the pavilion after scalping him for a duck.

Though Virat Kohli made a scrappy 24 off 24 deliveries against Afghanistan and 37 off 28 balls against Bangladesh in the subsequent two games, he never looked in his finest touch. Instead, it appeared like he was laboring for runs in the middle.

Nonetheless, Virat Kohli’s underwhelming performance in the semi-final did not cost India much as they demolished England at the Providence Stadium to reach their first T20 World Cup final in a decade, thanks to solid batting performances from Rohit Sharma (57 off 39), Suryakumar Yadav (47 off 36) and Hardik Pandya (23 off 13) and splendid bowling displays from Axar Patel (3/23), Kuldeep Yadav (3/19) and Jasprit Bumrah (2/12).

Meanwhile, former West Indies skipper Chris Gayle called Virat Kohli a special player. He stressed that one cannot write off a cricketer like him, even if he’s struggling for runs.

“These things happen to superstars or world-class players such as Virat. We know how dominant he has been in previous World Cups. A bad patch, it can happen to anybody. But the good thing about it. He is in the final, and sometimes big players can be called upon and step up and win the actual game for the team as well. So you cannot write off a player like Virat Kohli without a doubt. We know how special he is, so we just have to wait and see what he delivers tomorrow,” Chris Gayle told reporters during a media interaction on Friday.

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