Dambulla: Indian skipper Virat Kohli heaped praise on his bowlers and said that at one point of time he was sure that the opposition will get to a total of 300 run. However, it was the bowlers who led from the front and brought India back into the game and resulting in a 9 wickets win in Dambulla.
He went on to add that the idea of bowling first was in hope that the wicket would play slightly better under lights. “They got off to a very good start. We thought we’d be chasing something close to 300; it was a brilliant wicket for batting. The whole idea of winning the toss and bowling first was hoping that the wicket would be slightly slow in the day. The ball was coming onto the bat like a dream under lights and Shikhar (Dhawan) and me enjoyed batting together.
“At 129/1 we had a few things to think about but the bowlers came back superbly. The last three months have been a great time for Shikhar. The good thing is that he is capitalizing on his purple patch. He can win you games with the way he bats and we would be looking to keep him in that zone for as long as we can. He is feeling good about his game and is hitting the ball well. When he plays like this he is a match-winner and even in Tests he can win you games with the bat.”
Kohli once again highlighted on the want to get ready for the 2019 World Cup and alleged that the team management was continuously looking at transformation and combinations so that the team has all bases covered going into the showpiece event.
“I feel we need to start planning for the 2019 World Cup around 24 months in advance, try to experiment a bit here and there. We are taking that as a challenge and are looking to try out different things, things we wouldn’t do usually. You can see a lot of surprises over the next few games. All the guys have bought into it and I am very excited,” he said.
Commenting on Axar Patel’s show, Kohli said: “We thought Axar was a gun fielder and he brings his batting into play; and felt that one wrist spinner is enough. Also, Axar is a power-hitting batsman capable of hitting the big shots and that helps us. If we get a dry wicket we could go in with three spinners and a fast bowling all-rounder. At the start of a series we need to up our batting and Axar brings that balance for us as a team.”