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Knew we’re good enough to do well on any surface against any team: Virat Kohli

Ravichandran Ashwin claimed eight wickets to lead India’s whitewash against New Zealand as the hosts romped to a 321-run triumph on day four of the third and final Test in Indore on Tuesday.

cricket Updated: Oct 12, 2016 11:06 IST
Indore test,India vs NZ,Ravichandran Ashwin
Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli, left, and teammate Ravichandran Ashwin hold the ICC Test Championship mace at the end of their third test cricket match against New Zealand in Indore, India, Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2016. (AP)

Virat Kohli is happy that his bowlers have been able to decimate a quality New Zealand side on tracks which are not exactly rank turners which is an ample testimony that Ravichandran Ashwin and company are capable of winning matches irrespective the surface provided.

“We knew before the series that people will start talking about pitches. We knew pitches will not be dry as monsoon is everywhere and especially in Kolkata, which is a newly-laid wicket. We knew our abilities and we knew we should be good enough to do well on any surface and against any team,” Kohli told mediapersons at the post-match conference.

Read | Ashwin, Pujara lead India to 3-0 series sweep over New Zealand

Kohli believes that a right step has been taken in ensuring that bowlers are not overtly dependant on spin friendly tracks.

“That’s the right step we have taken. We believe in our skill and not believe in creating conditions or atmosphere which might suit us partially. We wanted to express ourselves. We finished two games in four days and that gives us a lot of confidence,” said Kohli.

Asked about Harbhajan Singh’s recent tweet that had pitches been as helpful earlier in his career he and Anil Kumble would have grabbed many more wickets, Kohli pointed out the World T20 Cup game (at Nagpur) when the same set of New Zealand spinners had outshone the same set of Indian bowlers.

“Even if it is a turning pitch you have to bowl well. Spin is just not something to happen only off the pitch. It depends on how many revs (revolutions) you give to the ball and the use of the shoulder. When we lost to New Zealand in the World Cup, I quite clearly remember, suddenly their spinners were quality bowlers and we were found out! I don’t see anyone talking about it now.”

“The same (New Zealand) spinners had played (in this series). Why did not they pick up wickets? It’s as simple as that. Our fast bowlers (also) picked up wickets everywhere. Give a guy a cement track to bat on. He should have a mindset to do so. It’s as simple as that. That’s all I am going to sum up.”

Read | Ashwin tops charts: No Test spinner in last 100 years has a better strike-rate

He also said the team looked to bat with more intent in the second innings.

“We try to play positive cricket in the second innings and try to give the bowlers as much enough overs to bowl and secondly enough runs to keep expressing themselves and not set defensive fields. This was a situation where we batted them out of the game. We could express ourselves best and give our bowlers time to bowl out the opposition. The last two Tests played out nicely for us and that’s why we could finish both the games in four days.”

First Published: Oct 12, 2016 11:06 IST