newsdog Facebook

We don't need to worry too much, says captain

Telegraph 2018-08-09 05:08:31
Ollie Pope with England’s batting coach Mark Ramprakash

London/Calcutta: India captain Virat Kohli thinks that his team's batting failure in the first Test against England, at Edgbaston, shouldn't be judged "so fast".

At a media conference ahead of the second Test, which begins at Lord's on Thursday, Kohli was asked if the problem with the Indian batsmen was mental or if it was a matter of technique. Kohli replied: "We should not judge so fast, and jump into conclusions. As a team, we keep patience. We don't judge so fast. We don't see any pattern to the failures. As far as wickets falling in a heap is concerned, it is not about technique, it is more of a mental aspect.

"It depends on how you think about it after the dismissal. There must be a clear plan on how to face the first 20-30 balls, and more often than not that plan does not involve aggression. There, we need some composure, other than aggression. As a batting unit, we have discussed that."

He added: "From the outside it looks very bad, especially as it is Test cricket and we are playing in England where it is anyway difficult. But we only need to bring down the margin of error and beyond that, we don't need to worry too much."

Kohli, himself, however has been among runs, hitting a brilliant century and a half-century in the first Test. Kohli's opinion on that was: "It doesn't hurt when you score runs and you don't win. It hurts when you are not scoring runs and the team is not doing well as well. It is not like I feel bad that I got runs and we couldn't get across the line.

"My job as a batsman when I go out there is to score runs. I am trying my level best to do that whenever possible. It is not going to happen every time, but when it does I want to try and contribute as much as possible. I definitely don't see this as a pattern. It doesn't matter whether I get the runs or Jinks (Ajinkya Rahane) does or (Murali) Vijay does or KL (Rahul) does... As long as we cross the line, that is the only thing that matters."

The million-dollar question for the Indian team ahead of the Lord's Test is whether India would go in with two spinners. Asked about that, the captain said: "Could be a tempting thought... The pitch looked very hard, the surface looked very dry. It has been very hot in London for the last couple of months. There is good grass cover on it and that is required basically to keep the wicket together, otherwise it is going to be very difficult to hold it together.

"The pitch is going to be an all-round wicket, if the batsmen bat well they can get runs... When the wicket wears off the spinners can come in. So it is a tempting thought to field two spinners, but we have to take a call on that depending on the team balance. But playing two spinners is definitely a possibility."

As a captain, Kohli said that his communication with the team has been "really good".

"I am doing as much as I can as the captain, there is constant feedback from the management. People have their own ways of looking at the game and their own ideas when it comes to captaincy and so on, but I feel I have had really good communication with all the players. Eventually, it is up to me what I do out there when I bat, because I am by myself and facing that one ball when I bat.

"Being in the right mindset is a very individual thing and as captain, you can only have meetings and chats which we do on a regular basis. People on the outside don't know these things and playing for India and getting to captain the country is a big honour."