Virat Kohli, the Indian skipper said that his side does not want wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant to lose his positivity or his optimism about changing a match situation for India after coming up short in the World Test Championship (WTC) final against New Zealand.
Virat Kohli’s comments came as India stumbled to an eight-wicket loss against New Zealand in the final of the World Test Championship (WTC) on Wednesday here at the Ageas Bowl.
Virat Kohli Doesn’t Want Rishabh Pant To Lose His Positivity Or Optimism In Changing The Match Situation For India
Rishabh Pant, who failed with the bat in the first innings scoring 4 was the top scorer in India’s otherwise poor display with the willow managing 41 runs.
“Look, Rishabh is just going to be a very expressive player whenever he gets an opportunity. Whenever there is a situation that needs to be understood, I think he assesses it really well. When things don’t come off, you can say that it was an error of judgment and that’s acceptable in sport.
“But we don’t want him to lose his positivity or his optimism in changing the situation for the team, and that’s where his USP lies,” said Virat Kohli during a virtual press conference.
“We will definitely continue to back him to play that way and find ways to put pressure on the opposition and find ways to score runs, which is his natural game. We’re not too worried about that.
“I think it’s up to him to understand whether it was an error of judgment and rectify it moving forward because he has a long career with the Indian team, and certainly someone who could be a match maker for India on consistently many occasions in the future,” Virat Kohli added.
Rishabh Pant scored 274 runs at an average of 68.50 in five innings for India against Australia. The keeper continued his form against England where he hit 270 runs at an average of 54.00. Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor played unbeaten knocks off 52 and 47 respectively as New Zealand defeated India by eight wickets to clinch the inaugural edition of the WTC.
“Well, we definitely need to work out better plans in terms of understanding how to score runs. We have to stay in sync with the momentum of the game and not let the game drift away too much.
“I don’t think there are any technical difficulties as such, but I think it’s more down to game awareness and being a little braver and putting bowlers under pressure and not allowing them to bowl in similar areas for longer periods of time unless it’s absolutely overcast and the ball is swinging all over the place as it did on day one,” said Virat Kohli.
“I think outside of that, we need to be able to move the game forward and put the opposition under pressure, and that’s key to playing and performing in difficult conditions,” he added.
India will next lock horns against England in a five-match Test series. Virat Kohli said that his side wanted first-class games ahead of the series, but they have not been given that.
“Well, that doesn’t depend on us. We obviously wanted first-class games, which I believe have not been given to us. I don’t know what the reasons for that are. But yeah, other than that I think our preparation time will be ample for us to be ready for the first Test,” said Kohli.
The Black Caps were so disciplined with the ball throughout the match that they didn’t let an Indian batsman score a fifty in the entire Test. This is the first time in 3 years that none of the Indian batsmen managed to score a half-century in a red-ball match since the Lord’s Test against England in 2018.
The heroes of New Zealand’s victory were Kane Williamson(49 and 52*), Kyle Jamieson (5/31 in the 1st innings), and Tim Southee(4/48 in the 2nd innings).
New Zealand 249 (Conway 54, Williamson 49, Shami 4-76) and 140 for 2 (Williamson 52*, Taylor 47, Ashwin 2-17) beat India 217 (Rahane 49, Kohli 44, Jamieson 5-31) and 170 (Pant 41, Southee 4-48) by eight wickets