Kohli: India's batsmen must deliver after England Test loss

Oleh Liam Blackburn 4 Ogos 2018 5
Kohli: India's batsmen must deliver after England Test loss

India's top order have been urged to do some soul-searching by captain Virat Kohli after the first-Test loss to England at Edgbaston.

The tourists were beaten by 31 runs in a tense encounter to start the five-match series, but they were reliant on Kohli's runs and his alliances with the tail as the skipper accounted for almost half of their runs across the two innings.

Aside from Kohli, the other top four batsman in India's line-up - Murali Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul and Ajinkya Rahane - contributed only 99 runs in the match and India's captain wants his men to learn from the spirit shown by those further down the innings.

"There's a lot to learn from the lower order," Kohli said to Sky Sports in the post-match presentation.

"First innings, Ishant [Sharma] and Umesh [Yadav] got stuck in there, again Ishant showed character here, Umesh got stuck in with Hardik [Pandya], so those kinds of things make you feel that as top-order batsmen, we need to apply ourselves better also.

"Just look at ourselves in the mirror. There's no hiding from this game. Whenever you step onto the field, whatever you feel will come out in no time.

"We just have to be positive, fearless, enjoy our cricket, take the negatives out of our cricket and look at the positives and build on those."

India began the fourth day in Birmingham needing 84 runs to win with five wickets in hand and, while Kohli was still at the crease, they always looked capable of pulling it off.

However, in a topsy-turvy contest, Kohli could not drag his team over the line, though India's resilience over the course of the Test still pleased him.

"There were a couple of times when we made comebacks into the game and I thought that we showed character there but a team like England will not let you do that every day of a Test match," he added.

"We realised that on the final day. They were relentless in the areas that they hit, and they made us work hard for our runs. [We] definitely could have applied ourselves better but I'm still proud of the fight that we showed and set up the series really nicely, I guess.

"It's going to be exciting for people to watch and just enjoy Test cricket over the next few weeks."

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Liam Blackburn

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