Dawn Punjab

Eng vs Ind Kohli remains tight lipped on opening partner of Rohit

Nottingham [UK], August 3 (ANI): India skipper Virat Kohli on Tuesday said the team will cope up with injuries to Shubman Gill and Mayank Agarwal as the squad has enough depth heading into the Test series against England.

India and England will be locking horns in five Tests, with the first starting on Wednesday. This series marks the start of the second World Test Championship (WTC) cycle. Shubman Gill is ruled out of the series due to an injury and on Monday, Mayank Agarwal was ruled out of the first Test due to a concussion.

“We will announce the XI tomorrow before we go for the toss, so you can know who is opening with Rohit. We are absolutely fine and happy with where we are placed,” said Kohli while replying to an ANI query during a virtual press conference.

Talking about how India can overcome those bad 2-2.5 hours which have ended up costing them the games, Kohli said: “Of course, as a team, we look to improve the things we have not done well. And that is one aspect of the game we need to get better at, and that is understanding how to control the damage when things are not going well. That’s what Test cricket is all about, you cannot have all sessions go your way. We know exactly what we need to do and it all boils down to execution.”

When asked whether Shardul Thakur can be groomed as a proper all-rounder in the longest format, Kohli said: “He already is a multi-dimensional cricketer and it is all about him getting more and more confidence. Someone like him brings balance to the side, Hardik Pandya has done for us in the past, right now he is getting on track to bowling regularly. These kinds of cricketers help the team in a massive way. Shardul is a huge prospect for us, he will be important to us not just in this series, but going ahead as well.”

India is in the UK since June as they played against New Zealand in the WTC finals from June 18-22. The Indian skipper believes that his side would be prepared well for the upcoming series against England having spent time in the country for almost two months.

“I have never really played for any landmarks or milestones in my career. This is again, every game of international cricket has been an opportunity for me to test my character and how strong I am. Things are going to be no different in this series as well, we are going to play with the same passion and commitment and the same belief we play every series with me. In my opinion, some series matter more than others, I do not really believe in these things because you are then picking and choosing what you want to do,” said Kohli.

“We are definitely much better prepared than we have been in the past. The situation has you rightly said allowed us to acclimatise with the weather firstly, it can change quite quickly here. At the same time, playing under different conditions in terms of weather, whether it is overcast or sunny. All those kinds of things are going to add to our experience. But you can have all the experience in the world but it all boils down to execution, as long as we embrace that, we will find the answers to every question that is being thrown at us,” he added.

India had last won a Test series in England in 2007 under the leadership of Rahul Dravid and after that, the Men in Blue have struggled to get past the Three Lions on their own backyard. (ANI)

Dawn Punjab
Author: Dawn Punjab

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