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TOP 5 knocks from the World T20 Super 10s

By Harish Kotian
March 28, 2016 20:19 IST
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Harish Kotian/'s 5 best knocks of the Super 10s.

The World T20 is certainly living up to its billing.

The tournament has witnessed amazing performances in the Super 10s, with some of the world's best batsmen highlighting their presence on the big stage.

Virat Kohli enhanced his reputation as one of the best finishers in limited overs cricket with two excellent knocks under pressure -- against Pakistan and Australia.

Joe Root showed his adaptability to the shortest format by helping England pull off a record run chase against South Africa, and Jos Buttler, his teammate, demolishing Sri Lanka.

Chris Gayle announced himself with a match-winning century against England in Mumbai and Tillakaratne Dilshan drew on all his experience as Sri Lanka survived a scare from Afghanistan.

Ahead of the semi-finals, check out the BEST five knocks from the Super 10s.

Gayle flattens England

Chris Gayle

IMAGE: Chris Gayle celebrates his century against England at the Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai, March 16, 2016. Photograph: Gareth Copley/Getty Images

Chris Gayle slammed the only century of the Super 10s, his blazing 100 off 48 balls ensured that the West Indies beat England by six wickets.

Put in to bat at the Wankhede, England looked well placed after posting an imposing 182/6.

With Gayle in the opposition, no score can be considered too big.

The swashbuckling opener underlined his reputation as the world's most dangerous batsman when he took the English bowling apart. He went on the attack early, hitting medium pacer Resse Topley for a four and a six in the second over to rally the Windies after they lost Johnson Charles (0) in the first over.

He smashed two sixes off leg-spinner Adil Rashid in the 9th over and repeated the dose off Ben Stokes before racing to his 50 off 27 balls, which included three fours and five sixes.

His next 50 runs came off just 20 balls. No English bowler that night was spared.

The West Indies coasted to victory with 11 balls to spare.

Kohli, the master of run chases

Virat Kohli

IMAGE: Virat Kohli during his absolutely amazing knock against Australia in Mohali, March 27, 2016. Photograph: Adnan Abidi/Reuters

He may not be as dangerous or imposing at the crease as his RCB team-mate Gayle, but Virat Kohli is one of the biggest match winners in recent times.

Australia won an important toss and elected to bat first in a must win game, both teams needing full points to advance to the semi-final.

The Aussie openers threatened to run away with the game as they raced past the 50 run mark in just 4 overs before the Indian bowlers staged a sterling comeback to restrict them to 160/6.

Openers Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan perished early, but Kohli was determined to win it for India and make up for his failure in the 50-overs World Cup semi-final against Australia exactly a year and a day ago.

He sensibly kept the scoreboard moving in the middle overs and, despite the run rate touching around 11 runs an over, never looked flustered.

With India needing 39 runs from 3 overs for victory he timed his final assault to perfection.

He smashed James Faulkner for 19 runs in the 18th over, hitting him for two fours and a six.

Next up was Nathan Coulter-Nile, whom he slammed for four boundaries in the penultimate over before Dhoni's winning boundary in the final over saw India seal the semi-final berth.

Before his attack, Kohli was batting on 50, off 40 balls, but changed gears efficiently, scoring 32 off the next 11 balls, to enhance his already incredible reputation.

Earlier in the tournament, he played a magnificent innings of 55 not out off 37 balls to steer India home against Pakistan on a difficult pitch in Kolkata. All the Indian batsmen struggled on the slow Eden Gardens wicket before Virat produced another special knock to keep India's World Cup record against Pakistan intact.

Root helps England pull off record chase

Joe Root

IMAGE: Joe Root in action against South Africa at the Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai, March 18, 2016. Photograph: Gareth Copley/Getty Images

England came up with an unbelievable performance with the bat, chasing down 230, the second highest successful run chase in T20 Internationals, led by Joe Root's sensational innings.

England Skipper Eoin Morgan was ruing the decision to send South Africa in to bat when the Proteas amassed a mammoth 229/3 in their 20 overs.

The result looked a foregone conclusion, but the English batsman never lost hope on a Wankhede wicket loaded with runs.

First came opener Jason Roy, who cracked a whirlwind 43 off 16 balls, as England raced to 56/1 in just 3 overs.

Two wickets in the space of eight balls saw England stumble a bit before Root took control over the proceedings and ensured that they consolidated on the good start in the middle overs.

He paced his innings well and at no stage went on an all out attack.

He hit Kyle Abbott for a four and six in the 17th over and in the next one from Chris Morris hit three consecutive fours to keep England in touch with the asking rate.

By the time he was dismissed in the 19th over after scoring 83 off 44 balls, Root had done enough for England to pull off one of the most amazing run chases in T20 cricket.

At 39, Dilshan still has the goods

Tillakaratne Dilshan

IMAGE: Tillakaratne Dilshan, seen here in a T20I game against the West Indies in Colombo, November 11, 2015. Photograph: Dinuka Liyanawatte/Reuters

Veteran Tillakaratne Dilshan brought all his experience into play as Sri Lanka edged past Afghanistan in their first match of the World T20 in Kolkata.

Captain Asghar Stanikzai led from the front with a splendid 62 from 47 balls to help the minnows post a competitive 153/7.

In reply, Sri Lanka lost Dinesh Chandimal (18) and Lahiru Thirimanne (6) cheaply before Dilshan scripted a great escape with an unbeaten 83.

He went on the attack right from the start, carting pacer Dawlat Zadran for back-to-back sixes in the 3rd over before despatching Hamid Hasan for consecutive fours in the next.

Afghanistan kept themselves in the hunt with regular wickets, but Dilshan's experience saw the Lankans through. His 83 from 56 balls had 8 fours and 3 sixes.

Buttler's knock takes England to semis

Jos Buttler

IMAGE: Jos Buttler hits a six against Sri Lanka at the Ferozeshah Kotla, Delhi, March 26, 2016. Photograph: Gareth Copley/Getty Images

Jos Buttler was a rare England player in demand at the IPL players' auction in February. Not surprisingly!

One of the most destructive batsmen in world cricket, the wicket-keeper-bastman can change a game in a few overs.

He proved his credentials during his quickfire 66 off 37 balls against Sri Lanka, hitting 8 fours and 2 sixes.

His assault saw England score 71 runs from the last 5 overs, which eventually proved crucial.

Sri Lanka staged a great comeback, courtesy Captain Angelo Mathews's superb 73 off 54 balls, but, alas, finished 10 runs short.

Buttler took his time to get going before hitting pacer Dushmantha Chameera for three fours in the 17th over and followed it up with a four and six off Dasun Shanaka in the next.

He wasn't done yet, hitting Chameera for a boundary and a six.

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