February 24, 2024

Published from Mumbai, Delhi & Bhopal

Kohli hopes batsmen replicate home form in Australia

Heaping praise on his bowlers, India skipper Virat Kohli asked his batters to replicate their home form in Australia next month.

“I’m really happy to see these guys fit and hungry. It’s up to the batsmen to do the rest of the job. I think this game was tougher for the batsmen. This first innings was more challenging than the last one (in Rajkot),” said Kohli at the post-match presentation.

India registered their tenth consecutive Test series win at home as Kohli’s men crushed the West Indies by 10 wickets in the second and final cricket Test at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium here on Sunday.

Once again, it was a cakewalk for India in the second innings after being handed a paltry 72-run target by the tourists. Openers Prithvi Shaw (33 not out) and Lokesh Rahul (33 not out) guided the side home with ease in just 16.1 overs on the third day of the Test.

After scoring 367 runs in their first innings in reply to the West Indies’ 311, India bowled out the visitors for 127 runs in the second innings on Sunday, setting themselves a 72-run target.

Pacer Umesh Yadav was the wrecker-in-chief with match figures of 10/133 and he became the third Indian pacer with a ten-wicket haul in a home Test.

The right-armer, who had figures of 6/88 in the first innings, bagged four wickets in the second innings conceding 45 runs and was also adjudged the ‘Man of the Match’.

“If you look at the three new guys (Vihari in England, Shaw and Pant) who’ve come in, they’ve grabbed their opportunities. I think all these things are a big positive. But from this Test I want to single out Umesh,” the skipper pointed out.

“Shardul broke down and to take ten wickets is great. It was an outstanding performance. We’re all happy for him. I think it’s a great luxury to have (several seamers). We have a headache to choose out of so many good quality bowlers. That’s a better position to be in than looking for bowlers,” Kohli added.

The captain further said he wants to see deputy Ajinkya Rahane and Rishabh Pant get more partnerships together.

“Rahane has been batting really well, he got runs in Nottingham and we won the Test. He wanted runs under the belt. His partnership with Pant is something we want to see more of,” said Kohli.

Yadav became only the third Indian pacer to take 10 wickets in a Test at home.

West Indies captain Jason Holder, who played his first game of the series, said the ordinary batting led to another defeat on day three of the game.

“A little disappointed with the way we batted in the second innings. I thought we fought our way back in the game after the fightback yesterday we tried to push forward today. But credit to India, they played commendably and did the basics better than us,” Holder said.

Asked about an extra seamer and whether that made a difference, the visiting captain said: “In hindsight a lot of seamers got wickets, Umesh got ten wickets, I got a fifer and maybe Shannon got a few wickets as well and an extra seamer would have helped.”

“It didn’t spin as much as we’d expected it to. We need to apply ourselves more, need to give ourselves a better chance with the bat – bat deep after getting set in,” he added.

Hindi Website