England vs India – Third LV= Insurance Test Match: Day Four
Virat Kohli credited the England bowlers for dealing India an innings defeat in the third Test at Headingley. The Indian captain also lamented that his team cracked under scoreboard pressure after they were bowled out for 78 on the first day and let England take a massive first-innings lead of 354 runs.
Starting the fourth day at 215 for two, still behind by 139, India were bowled out for 278 in just over 100 minutes of play on Day Four.
Trying to explain the collapse, Kohli said that it was a combination of scoreboard pressure and good bowling from the opposition.:
“Basically, it was down to scoreboard pressure,” said Kohli. “You’re always up against it when you get out for under 80, and the opposition puts up such a big score. But we did well to stay in the game yesterday, fight back as much as we could, and gave ourselves a chance. But the pressure today was outstanding from the England bowlers, and eventually they got the results they wanted.””Quite bizarre (India’s batting in the first innings), batting collapses can happen in this country. We thought the pitch was good to bat on, coming on nicely. But their discipline forced us into mistakes, and the pressure was relentless. It’s difficult to cope when you’re not scoring runs. That caused the batting order to crumble,” said Virat Kohli in the post-match presentation ceremony.
Virat Kohli won a rare toss on Wednesday and elected to bat first. India were soon pushed to the back foot, courtesy a brilliant bowling show from James Anderson and co. The visitors, who came into the match with a 1-0 lead in the series, were bowled out for a paltry 78.
Not regretting his decision at the toss, Virat Kohli credited the English side for outplaying India at Headingley to level the series, saying:
“Batting collapses can happen in this country; the pitch was good to bat on, but their discipline with the ball forced us to make a few mistakes, and it was difficult to deal with spells where we weren’t getting runs. The pitch looked good to bat on, and when England batted, it hadn’t changed much, so they had a lot more intent with the bat, made better decisions. The result is a reflection of how the teams played in this game; we expected them to bounce back.”
The loss at Headingley was India’s first innings defeat in three years. Their previous three innings defeats have all come in England (one in 2018 and two in 2014).
Virat Kohli defends Rishabh Pant and lower-order batting
Ollie Robinson dismisses Rishabh Pant.
Despite India’s below-par batting efforts in recent times, Virat Kohli wasn’t too critical of his batting unit and defended Rishabh Pant. The Indian stumper, batting at #6, has scored only 87 runs in the series at an average of 17.4.
The Indian captain believes that the top order needs to give enough runs for the lower order to step up.
“The batting depth is an argument you can have,” said Kohli. “The top order has to give enough runs for the lower middle order to step up. We did pretty well in the first two games; when you have a result like this, you can’t take too much from it. As a group, we need to stay close and confident, even after 36 all out (in Australia), we came back.”
Refusing to comment on the bowling composition for the Oval Test, Virat Kohli said a call would be made after analysing the pitch and the amount of moisture on it. The fourth Test begins on Thursday, September 2, at The Oval.