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Virat Kohli wants batsmen to get rid of ultra-defensive approach before second Test

Cheteshwar Pujara approached the second innings of the first Test cautiously and scored just 11 runs from 81 deliveries whereas middle-order batsman Hanuma Vihari scored just 15 from 79 balls.

By: Sports Desk |
February 25, 2020 2:12:10 pm
Virat Kohli got out trying to play a pull shot in the second innings of the first Test against New Zealand (Source: AP Photo)

Virat Kohli urged his under-pressure batting lineup to get rid of the ultra-defensive approach ahead of the second Test which starts on Saturday. Kohli feels that this approach “never pays off” when batting on overseas pitches.

“I think the language we use as a batting unit, that has to be correct. I don’t think being cautious or wary will help because you might stop playing your shots,” Kohli said after the loss.

India’s No.3 batsman Cheteshwar Pujara approached the second innings cautiously and scored just 11 runs from 81 deliveries whereas middle-order batsman Hanuma Vihari faced 79 balls to score 15 runs.

Kohli did not seem impressed by the approach as not rotating the strike puts pressure on the batting partner to score runs and eventually leading to a loose shot.

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“You will start doubting that if even singles are not coming in those conditions, what will you do? You are just waiting for when that good ball will come and you will be dismissed.”

“(If) you have that acceptance that it’s okay if you are out to a good ball, at least I don’t think that way,” said Kohli ahead of the final game of the tour.

READ | India’s four pillars ⁠— Kohli, Pujara, Bumrah, Shami ⁠— bring down house

The 31-year-old wants his batting unit to take the attack to the opposition instead of going into a shell.

“If I see a situation, if it is a green wicket, then I try to play counter-attacking cricket so that I can take the team forward. If you don’t succeed, then you have to accept that your thinking was correct, you tried but if it didn’t come off, fair enough. There is no harm in accepting that.”

“But I don’t think a cautious approach ever pays off, especially away from home,” the skipper was clear in his thought process.

Once again, Kohli emphasised on the need to have a positive mindset and not just focussing on the batting technique in the longest version of the game.

“If we start thinking too much about the conditions, then you won’t be able to focus on your batting. When you are not playing in your (home) conditions, the game becomes more mental. We can sometimes get into too many technical discussions. But if your mind is clear, then any condition looks easy.

“Then it doesn’t seem as if a lot is happening with the ball or that the bowling attack is tough. We will follow the same positive frame of mind we have been in.

“We were not able to execute in this game but when we do so, we know what we can achieve,” the confident skipper said ahead of the Christchurch challenge.

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