Australia vs India 2018-19: We were the better team and deserved to win: Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli’s reaction said it all when KL Rahul took Josh Hazlewood’s catch which brought an end to a thrilling first Test between India and Australia.
It looked all over when Ishant Sharma bowled a ferocious bouncer to Travis Head to dismiss him and reduce Australia to 115 for 5 in the first session on day five. Shaun Marsh departed soon after scoring 60 and so did skipper Tim Paine as Australia found themselves 7 down for 187. However, the game was not over yet. Australia’s stubborn tail was not ready to throw in the towel yet.
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Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc took the score past the 200-run mark, adding 41 runs to frustrate the visitors. Mohammed Shami broke the stand when he accounted for Starc. But it did not end the troubles for India. Cummins and Nathan Lyon took the score past the 250-run mark as Australia smelled a miraculous win while the visitors started to smell a calamity. However, before it could get too late, Jasprit Bumrah removed Cummins.
There was, however, no end to the drama as Lyon and Josh Hazlewood frustrated India even more. The two played with India’s nerves as the cricketing world started sensing an upset. However, R Ashwin finally picked up a wicket after bowling 33 overs on the day when he made Hazlewood edge one to Rahul in the slips.
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Speaking after the game, India skipper Virat Kohli said that ups and downs are part of Tests as he expressed his delight over the win.
“These things happen in Tests, ups and downs through a game. You need to just stay calm. Odds were stacked against them. They fought really well but we executed our plans well and got that last wicket which were intending to get. I wouldn’t say I was cool as ice but you just don’t try to show it,” he said at the post-match presentation ceremony.
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He further hailed his bowlers for picking up 20 wickets in the game, saying:
“Super proud, to have four bowlers and take 20 wickets is a great achievement. Something that we haven’t done in the past. Shows us batsmen that if we step up, we will be gunning for a win in every Test match. Collectively we were the better team and deserved to win.”
The skipper also had a word of praise for Cheteshwar Pujara who struck a century and a fifty.
“Priceless from Pujara, we were down and out at lunch on day 1. His grit and determination brought us back in it. We always knew that runs on the board would make a home side tentative. Any lead was gold and we got 15. In the second innings again, he and Rahane batted well. I think our lower middle order and lower order could have done better. We could have added another 30-35 runs more which could have taken the game totally beyond Australia. So these are things that we have to think about going to Perth but if someone had told me before the series that I would be 1-0 up as soon we started the series, I would have taken it with both hands,” said Kohli.
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