Dubai: Skipper Virat Kohli on Monday praised AB de Villiers' "super-human" effort on a sluggish pitch after the South African great hit a match-winning 73 for Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Indian Premier League.
Bangalore thrashed Kolkata Knight Riders by 82 runs in Sharjah as De Villiers stood tall with his 33-ball blitz and an unbeaten century stand with Kohli, who made 33.
Bangalore posted 194 for two, a total their bowlers defended by keeping down Kolkata to 112 for nine in 20 overs.
De Villiers, 36, brought the house down with two of his six sixes going out of the stadium and one hitting a moving car on the road as he went past 3000 runs in the Twenty20 tournament.
"Barring one super-human, everyone struggled on that pitch," Kohli said of his star player who hit his third half-century of the season on a slow Sharjah pitch.
"It was unbelievable. I thought I had a few balls under my belt, and I might start striking. He just came in and struck the third ball, and said he felt good.
"I said you might see a lot of people do what is done in other games, but only AB can do what he did. It was a fabulous knock. We were looking at 160-165, and it was only thanks to his genius we got to 195."
De Villiers took the attack to the opposition bowlers with Kohli playing second fiddle at the other end as the duo scored 83 runs from the final 30 deliveries of the innings.
"I am very happy with my performance. That's all I can say," De Villiers said after being named of the match.
"I got a duck last game, that is a terrible feeling. I am very happy that I contributed. I surprised myself today to be honest."
Opener Aaron Finch, who made 47, and Devdutt Padikkal, who hit 32, set the platform for Bangalore's total with a 67-run stand.
Kolkata's bowling looked dismal in the absence of spinner Sunil Narine who was dropped from the XI after being under warning for a suspect bowling action.
Kolkata skipper Dinesh Karthik said it was just "hard to stop" a "world-class player" like AB.
"He was the difference between the two teams. We tried everything. The only ball was the perfect in-swinging yorker. Anything else was going," said Karthik.
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Harshal stressed that Kohli, who has decided to step down as India T20 captain after the upcoming World Cup and RCB skipper post the ongoing IPL, remains a "leader".
The 21-year-old from Jammu has got everyone excited with his raw pace and clocked 152.95 kph during the game against Royal Challengers Bangalore here on Wednesday. Kohli was paying attention and was quite excited by what he saw.