Triumphant India captain Virat Kohli hit out at a suggestion that the batting of the home team was “ugly” while the bowlers have succeeded after his side clinched an 124-run in the third Test to take a 2-0 winning lead over South Africa at Nagpur on Friday.
“I don’t think our displays have been ugly, let me state that first. It’s a harsh word to use. It’s been lack of application. And secondly, I don’t mind compromising on (batsmen’s) averages as long as we are winning Test matches. I think that’s our main concern,” said Kohli at the post match press conference at the VCA stadium.
The Indian batsmen have not been among the runs, Kohli included, and only Murali Vijay and Cheteshwar Pujara has scored a half century in the low-scoring series so far before the final Test coming up in Delhi in the first week of December.
He also claimed that the current team’s players were not playing for records but to win games, perhaps indirectly hitting out at some former cricketers.
“We are not playing for record, we are not playing for numbers or averages. Let’s not get into that matter. Yeah, that’s all there is to it,” he said.
He recalled that though the performances of the batsmen were not great in the previous Test series in Sri Lanka, the team still managed to return home with a 2-1 series win after losing the opener at Galle.
“In Sri Lanka our performances weren’t that great with the bat but we still won the series. It’s the bowlers who are going to win you Test matches, as simple as that. If you don’t take 20 wickets, you can have an average of 55, it doesn’t matter.
“These small contributions and team winning are more important rather than having an average of 50 and above and bowlers not being able to take wickets. I think you need to find an appropriate balance and sometime small contributions are more important than the big hundreds that we get in Test cricket,” he added to buttress his point.