Kohli and Sachin: when the great was not good enough

Kohli's unbeaten 89 in vain, against West Indies in the semifinal, is but a patch — one in a few — in his evolving batting reel. Yet, as undesired it be, it was evocative of the hurting episodes from Sachin’s career —the spunky 136 versus Pakistan in the Chennai Test in 1999 and the facile 175 against Australia in the Hyderabad ODI in 2009.

Of late, more so in the 2016 World Twenty20 competition, Kohli has become the primary, and at times solitary, reaper of runs, a role that Sachin slipped into a lot in his mid-career.   -  Getty Images

Virat Kohli was spoken about much after his batworks of note versus Pakistan and Australia in the ongoing World T20; striking was the comparison with batting legend Sachin Tendulkar. The observations, not entirely unsound, stood on a logic each of their own.

Thursday sparks a reason more. His unbeaten 89 in vain, against West Indies in the semifinal, is but a patch — one in a few — in his evolving batting reel. Yet, as undesired it be, it was evocative of the hurting episodes from Sachin’s career —the spunky 136 versus Pakistan in the Chennai Test in 1999 and the facile 175 against Australia in the Hyderabad ODI in 2009.

They have a common narrative: to set hearts and hopes aflutter for a while, before causing deep disappointment to Indian fans. When a batsman is as irresistible as in the cases invoked, it would have been better if fortune had favoured him. Yet, on Thursday, fortune remained as rigid just as it did when Kohli hit successive ODI tons against Australia at Melbourne and Canberra early this year.

Of late, more so in the 2016 World Twenty20 competition, Kohli has become the primary, and at times solitary, reaper of runs, a role that Sachin slipped into a lot in his mid-career.