After winning the Adelaide Test by 31 runs, Indian captain Virat Kohli warned Australia that there will be no let up in the intensity of the game and they are looking forward win in the remaining three Tests also. Also Read - Anushka Sharma, Virat Kohli Raise Covid-19 Relief Fund Target To Rs 11 Crore, Read On
“We can’t be happy with just one Test match. We will not be satisfied with just one Test. Yes, we are happy about this victory but this is something we need to build on. We literally have nothing to lose,” Kohli said. Also Read - Rahul Dravid Picked Cues From Australian Structure And Created Solid Pool For Indian Cricket: Greg Chappell
India had come close to winning the opening match at the Adelaide Oval in 2014 before losing by 48 runs. Also Read - India's Probable Squad For Tour of Sri Lanka: No Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma And Jasprit Bumrah in Likely Squad
“Four years back, it was 48 runs on the other side. This one is way better – 31 on our side. It is a great feeling – never taken lead in a series in Australia, that for us is a huge boost,” Kohli said after India notched up their sixth Test win on Australian soil.
“It has given us the right momentum to play in a big series like this. We have had to work hard for five days. The physical and mental toil, and the emotion of it all come together in a result, so it is a very special feeling.
“Having never done it in Australia, to take the lead first up, is a good achievement on the team’s part, and something we are looking to build on.” Chasing 323, Australia’s lower order fought bravely before the team was bowled out for 291 in the second innings, and the Indian skipper hailed his four-man bowling attack for scripting the victory.
“That’s a very positive sign (to take 20 wickets with four bowlers). Especially with the Kookaburra, we have not been able to sustain that pressure long enough in the past,” said Kohli.
“But the fact that they are fitter and they have more pace on it for longer periods, and their job at certain times is just to contain.
“I think to pick 20 wickets with four bowlers, away from home, especially with a ball that does not offer you that much is something we can be proud of.
“Day one went against but the way Cheteshwar Pujara brought us back into the game, we did not let up again for the remaining four days. This time around we need to learn quickly from our mistakes,” he added.
Australia started the fifth and final day at 104 for four 4 and Kohli said his team never relaxed.
“We did not take anything for granted. The pitch also got a little slow in the second session. The Kookaburra gets softer and it is difficult to get the ball going off a length and nick batsmen off. Our fast bowlers still came back and bowled with great heart,” he said.
“We knew they were not going to throw in the towel just like that. Their tail, I think, is in the top three when it comes to lower order averages in the past couple of years. They put a price on their wicket. We certainly expected them to fight. We never wanted to take it for granted.” Kohli said that the key to using four bowlers was to utilise them at different stages, with spinner R Ashwin bowling as many as 86.5 overs in two innings and picking up six wickets.
“If Australia had been 50-4, we would have gone with our strike bowlers straight away and could afford to give away a few runs. The fact that we went with Ashwin and Ishant this morning was because we had a template where they were scoring at 1-2 runs an over maximum,” he said.
This was India’s first Test win in Australia since 2008.
“As batsmen, if you are not playing with positive intent you can nick off at any stage. And that’s what happened with those guys who were not ready. We wanted to create that zone where our bowlers were in a good rhythm.
“And even with second new ball we gave it to Ashwin, we thought he will get more bite with it. In the past, there have been sessions where we have given too many runs in one go. In this Test, we were pretty balanced in that regard.”
(With PTI inputs)