Talismanic India batter Virat Kohli on Sunday scored his long-awaited 28th Test century and his first in the format since November 2019, when he reached triple figures on day four of the fourth Test against Australia at the Narendra Modi Stadium on Sunday.
On the second ball of the 139th over, Kohli came forward against Lyon and played a flick through square leg for a single to break a drought of 1205 days for a century in Test cricket.
Kohli took off his helmet and raised the bat to acknowledge the applause from a Sunday crowd before kissing his wedding ring and looking to the skies. Commentator and former India head coach Ravi Shastri said on air, "a 600-kilo gorilla is off his back.
He will grow a couple of inches taller by this evening." Kohli scored 27 of his Test centuries in 141 innings, including the one which came in November 2019 during the day-night Test against Bangladesh at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
But for the 28th Test century and 75th of his international cricket career, it has taken 42 innings and more than three years to arrive. Kohli got his hundred in 241 balls at Ahmedabad, his second slowest century after his ton against England in the 2012/13 series coming off 289 balls.
Kohli resumed his innings from 59 off 128 balls on Sunday and took his time to score the remaining 41 runs in the face of a slow pitch and some disciplined bowling from the Australian spin trio of Nathan Lyon, Todd Murphy and Matthew Kuhnemann.
In a lean run for more than 1000 days which also saw him lose India's captaincy in all formats of the game, Kohli had scored his maiden T20I hundred last year against Afghanistan in the Asia Cup and notched up three more centuries in the ODIs since December last year.
But his scores in the longest format of the game had been a cause of worry. Though Kohli looked good on various occasions in the ongoing Test series against Australia, the century eluded him till his grit, determination and patience got him the elusive three-figure score on a sunny Sunday at Ahmedabad.