India captain Virat Kohli admitted that the team management did commit a mistake. And it did so by not drafting in a spinner which, according to Virat Kohli, never crossed his mind. He said he believed that a four-pronged pace attack would do the needful. India lost the second Test by 146 runs at the new Optus Stadium in Perth on Tuesday.
The hosts played a three pacers and one spinner in Nathan Lyon, who actually did the most of the damage by picking up eight wickets in the match and thus adjudged the Man of the Match.
“When we looked at the pitch, we didn’t think about the (Ravindra) Jadeja option. We thought four quicks would be enough,” Virat Kohli was quoted as saying by news agency PTI after India were bundled out for 140 in their second essay on the final day of the Test match. “Nathan Lyon bowled really well. We never thought about the spin option to be honest,” PTI quoted Kohli as saying.
The captain himself did score a century in the first innings but all went in vain as Australia levelled the series 1-1 after superior display at Perth. “When you don’t win you don’t really rank your performances so it’s irrelevant because we didn’t get the result we wanted. I am focused on the next game and I hope I can contribute on a winning note,” Kohli said.
As a true sportsman, Virat Kohli did acknowledge though that Australians played well their bowlers outshone the visitors. “As a team I think we played well in patches which we can hold onto. Australia played much better than us with the bat. 330 on that pitch we felt was a bit too much. They deserved to win,” Kohli said. “We had the belief we could do it, but they were more relentless and put us in trouble,” he added.
Virat Kohli though praised his bowlers for the show they have put up on a tricky wicket at Perth. “(Our bowlers) are outstanding as a pack, to see them dominate was really good to see and something we want to build on. They are relentless even if they aren’t getting wickets which is a great quality,” he said. Asked about his controversial dismissal in the first innings, Kohli said, “It was a decision made on the field, it stays there.”
Relief for Tim Paine
On the other hand, winning skipper Tim Paine was a relieved man after having levelled the series in the second Test itself. “It’s probably more a relief at the moment, first Test win has taken a while,” Paine said.
Having said that it was tough Test match for both sides, Paine picked the opening stand between Aaron Finch and Marcus Harris in the first innings made the difference. “Really proud of the players and staff. Good to get a little bit of reward. It was as difficult Test, both have been tough Tests. Two really competitive sides with good fast bowling attack. Marcus and Aaron, to get us none for 100 was brilliant and probably the difference in the end,” Paine said. The opening partnership fetched 112 runs.
Paine also had a lot of praise for Lyon for his eigh-wicket match haul. “It’s great to have Lyon in our team. Every team would want to have him in their team. You can throw him the ball in any condition, at any end, any time against any team and he loves bowling to the best players in the world,” Paine said after winning his maiden Test as skipper.