'No excuses': Virat Kohli assesses India's horror defeat in Chennai against England

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: Feb 09, 2021, 02:20 PM(IST)

Virat Kohli's endorsements Photograph:( AFP )

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India on Tuesday suffered a shocking 227-run defeat against England in the first Test of the four-match series at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai. The Indian cricket team, who had scripted history in Australia, tasted their first defeat in Chennai since 1999 and the crushing loss brings an end to their 14-match unbeaten streak in home Tests.

India on Tuesday suffered a shocking 227-run defeat against England in the first Test of the four-match series at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai. The Indian cricket team, who had scripted history in Australia, tasted their first defeat in Chennai since 1999 and the crushing loss brings an end to their 14-match unbeaten streak in home Tests.

After the heavy defeat, Indian skipper Virat Kohli assessed the match as he said the Indian team failed to put pressure with the ball in the first innings while adding that body language of the Indian player needs to improve.

England, after posting a mammoth 578 runs in the first innings, bundled out India for 337 before posting a target of 420 runs for the hosts. However, India, in reply, were skittled out for 192 runs to complete the 227-run defeat. It also brings an end to India’s eight-match winning run in home Tests.

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“I don't think we put enough pressure on them with the ball in the first half. Collectively as a bowling unit, fast bowlers and Ash, were good in the first innings but we also needed to contain a few more runs and create pressure. Having said that, it was a slow wicket and not helping the bowlers which made it easy for the batsmen to rotate strike and get into the game,” Kohli said in the post-match presentation.

“Just looked like not much happening in it on the first two days. But credit to England, they got stuck in and put up a big total on the board. Our body language and intensity was not up to the mark, second innings we were much better. We were better in the second half of the first innings with the bat, not the first four batters. We have to understand the things that we have done decently in this game and the things that we haven't and as a side we are always looking to improve. England were far more professional and consistent throughout the Test match than we were,” the Indian skipper added.

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India conceded 578 runs in the first innings with the Shahbaz Nadeem and Washington Sundar struggled to bowl tight line and lengths while conceding heavy runs which allowed England to dominate the proceedings in the first two days of the match.

However, Kohli said that the Indian team knows how to bounce back while vowing a better body language from the hosts.

“That's a fair assessment (the fourth and fifth bowlers not being up to the mark). You need your bowling unit to step up and create pressure on the opposition. We didn't achieve that in this game which is fine, lack of execution is acceptable but to understand our mindset was right is very important for us. I think we did well in the second innings with the ball and put pressure on them. With the bat as well we left a few things to be desired and analysed as batsmen with the kind of decisions we took. We are always learning as a side and evolving as a side and Test cricket is tough. England were ready for that grind and probably better equipped than us.

“(The toss) Ended being crucial I didn't think it would. We don't want to take anything away from England with the way they played. No excuses. We are a side that accepts our failures and faults and learns from them. One thing is for sure that in the next three matches we are going to give a tough fight and not let things slip away like it did in this Test. We have to start off with good body language and put pressure on the opposition. Understand fields, pace of the pitch and what the bowlers are doing, all those kind of things will be crucial. In the end it is the mindset and we are tying to get that back. We know how to bounce back and will give our best effort in the next game,” Kohli, who scored 11 and 72 in the first Test against England, concluded.

India will look to bounce back when they take the field for the second Test which will be played at the same venue from February 13.

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