'No one said anything about the pitch when we lost in New Zealand inside 3 days': Virat Kohli dismisses pitch criticism
- India vs England: Virat Kohli cited the example of India's tour of New Zealand in early 2020, where they were blanked 0-2, with both Tests finishing inside three days, mentioning that all people could talk about back then was the performance by the batsmen and not the pitch.
India captain Virat Kohli believes the debate surrounding the Ahmedabad pitch has been going in for far too long and it is about time people should come to terms with the fact that spin is an important factor while playing Test cricket in the sub-continent. Kohli cited the example of India's tour of New Zealand in early 2020, where they were blanked 0-2, with both Tests finishing inside three days, mentioning that all people were talking about was the performance by the batsmen and not the pitch.
"Let me ask you a question - do we play matches so that they last 5 days or do we play to win?
"We lost in New Zealand inside 3 days. No one said anything about the pitch back then. Our strength is we focus on ourselves and not the pitch. We need to be honest with ourselves about this narrative (of spinning tracks)," Kohli said on the eve of the fourth Test between India and England at Ahmedabad's Narendra Modi Stadium.
The third Test match between India and England in Ahmedabad finished inside two days – the first time it has happened in over 50 years, and even though we are just one day away from a fresh game, several former cricketers are still trying to come to terms with it. Kohli's deputy Ajinkya Rahane echoed his captain's thoughts and mentioned how relating India's performance to the nature of a pitch is unfair, and Kohli feels the same.
"I believe there is too much noise about spinning tracks. Our media should present the view that spinning tracks are fine in the subcontinent. The reason behind our success as a team is that we haven't cribbed about any surface we have played on. We have always tried to improve," the India captain added.
"No clue why the focus is so much on the ball or the pitch. Neither sides batsmen were good enough to tackle the pitch in 3rd Test. I maintain it was a case of the skill on display rather than the pitch being a bad one."