Tuesday, 16 October, 2018

Want to win every ball, every session: Kohli

Credits BCCI Credits BCCI
Eugene Bates | 04 July, 2018, 02:33

KL Rahul hit a sublime unbeaten century to lead India to a dominant eight-wicket victory over a chastened England in the first Twenty20 at Old Trafford.

Virat Kohli and co. will take this series as preparation for the next year World Cup which will be happening in the same country.

Their supremacy in shorter formats is redoubtable but India will have their task cut out against a vastly improved England in the opening T20 game in what will be a defining summer for Virat Kohli and his team. Even when we came here for the Champions Trophy (2017), this was the first question that was asked, and my reply was "I'm just looking to have a good time here". We certainly want to play positive and hard-fought cricket. It is pleasurable to beat a good team in their own conditions. The crafty spinners have been troubling oppositions at will as they have been able to take wickets consistently in the middle overs even in unhelpful conditions.

Dating back to June 2017, England have won five out of nine T20Is played against South Africa, West Indies, Australia and New Zealand. But we will play fearless cricket. It is very less that separates the two teams right now and we are surely in for a cracker of a contest on this Tuesday.

About the takeaways from a long England tour, Kohli said: "The focus obviously will be on the way we play our cricket and the attitude we carry on throughout the tour".

"Of course, no one can guarantee results". While Jordan and Plunkett looked impressive against Australia, picking three and two wickets respectively, Willey was slightly more economical and had a wicket to show for his efforts. I feel anyone who plays well on that particular day has better chances of winning.

"It doesn't matter whether I get runs or don't get runs [he got 258 at an average of 129], what I want is the team to play well and the team to win".

All-rounder Krunal Pandya has been named as Sundar's replacement in the T20 squad, while Axar Patel will take the 18-year-old's place in the ODI team. And it is for sure that Buttler will be India's greatest threat alongside with Jason Roy and Alex Hales who can also use a lot of power in the English top-order.

I think this IPL season has broken the barrier to a great extent between the sides - Kohli. So yeah I was really glad to see the rigid mindset was sort of kept on the side and people were allowed to come over.

Talking about the team combinations, Kohli said that the batting order is going to be flexible and not "one-dimensional".

However, Buttler continued to play confidence and swagger - a switch-hit for four off Yuzvendra Chahal being the most eye-catching of his strokes.

"We want everyone to have a go". We could throw in some surprises through the whole length of the batting innings.

"With that major tournament coming, it gives you an opportunity to test your bench strength, try out fringe players and test their characters as well".

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