Addressing media ahead of the second Test against South Africa (SA) in Pune, Indian skipper Virat Kohli stressed that his team did not take anything for granted. He was referring to the mindset of playing in the home conditions. Reiterating that the Indian side had quality players, he mentioned that they knew the art of winning Test matches in these conditions. At the same time, he acknowledged that when there was too much spin, even the Indian batsmen found it tough on many occasions in the past.
He said, “Well, it’s quite evident that we have the quality of players that we have already. Plus, we know very well how to play in our conditions- how do we need to win Test matches. So, look it is not easy for us as a home side as well you know when the conditions are challenging. You know, when the ball is spinning, even we have found it difficult in the past."
Kohli opined that the Indian team was continuously looking for solutions, rather than make excuses. He cited this as the reason for winning many Tests. The Indian skipper revealed that the players worked very hard on their game, despite playing at home. He emphasized that the team refrained from focusing on the conditions and instead, concentrated on winning every game.
“But we are a team that looks for answers and not excuses. So maybe that’s the reason why we keep improving and we have been winning so many Test matches. We don’t take anything for granted for sure. We can very well be losing 4-5 wickets in a session, so we know that as well as a team. And we work pretty hard on our game also, even though we play in our home conditions. I think the mindset is key for us. And that’s to win every game that we play and not to focus on what the conditions are,” Kohli stated.
The Test series has got off to a riveting start with India winning by 203 runs. However, unlike what the victory margin suggests, SA was in the game until the beginning of the final day. Having a mere lead of 71 runs in the first innings, Rohit Sharma’s second century of the match propelled India to 323 runs in the second innings. Ultimately, the target proved to be too steep for the visiting side as Shami ran through their top batsmen. While the Pune Test will commence on October 10, the third Test will be played at Ranchi from October 19.