India vs New Zealand: ‘Need to accept we were not good enough in this series’ - Virat Kohli identifies road ahead
The whitewash in New Zealand ended India’s flawless World Test Championship campaign but captain Virat Kohli is not offering excuses and accepts they were just not good enough in the two-test cricket series. Kohli, arguably the best batsman of his era, himself endured a rare failure in the series, managing only 38 runs in four innings typifying his team’s lacklustre batting.
India’s vaunted batting line-up looked at sea against the swinging ball or whenever it was pitched short, while their bowlers shone only in patches.
“We were not at par with New Zealand as far as competing every day of the test match goes,” Kohli said after India were defeated by seven wickets with half of the second test to spare.
“It can happen to a side when the other side plays better and you can go in a downward spiral.”
“If we shy away from it, we’re not going to improve. So we need to accept we were not good enough in this series, we’ve got take it on the chin and improve those things.”
India, missing opener Rohit Sharma due to injury, fell short of the 200-mark in both innings in Wellington and were bowled out for 124 in the second innings at Christchurch.
“There was just not enough done by the batsmen in this series for the bowlers to try and attack,” Kohli said.
“I think to win a series away from home, you need to have a balanced performance with both bat and ball and in the field as well. It was something we were not able to do in this series.”
Kohli and coach Ravi Shastri have made it their mission to make India a team capable of winning matches regardless of toss and nature of the surface but the drubbing suggested they are still short of that target.
India lost the toss in both the tests and home captain Kane Williamson unsurprisingly elected to field, unleashing his pace attack on green tracks where the ball swung at a lively place.
Kohli, however, said that was not an excuse for India’s performance.
“It gave an extra advantage to the bowlers in the first two hours,” he said.
“But look, as an international side playing so well over the last two or three seasons, you are expected to go out there and try and understand those conditions and execute things accordingly. This time around we were not able to.”