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Thursday, Aug 22, 2019

India vs Sri Lanka: ‘Virat Kohli proud captain, would never miss a match’

Virat Kohli’s commitment for Indian cricket team is exemplary, according to fielding coach R Sridhar. Kohli-led India are currently playing a Test match against Sri Lanka

india-vs-sri-lanka-2017 Updated: Nov 17, 2017 22:49 IST
Virat Kohli had requested to be rested for latter part of India’s series against Sri Lanka, according to reports.
Virat Kohli had requested to be rested for latter part of India’s series against Sri Lanka, according to reports.(AFP)

Given that Virat Kohli’s India is always seeking to eschew bad habits and “embrace difficult conditions” in its bid to be a top side for a considerable period of time, a conversation on fielding made sense even though India hadn’t taken the field at Eden Gardens. (IND v SL 1st Test, Day 2 HIGHLIGHTS | SCORECARD)

This, after all, is the most controllable aspect of cricket, unlike batting or bowling, said R Sridhar, the fielding coach after the second day of the first Test against Sri Lanka here on Friday.

“And the formula is very simple, the more you practice, the better you get…Also, the fitter the player, the better the result on the field,” he said. Now out of the India squad, Suresh Raina, for example, has to tick the fitness parameters even though he is a fabulous fielder, said Sridhar.

READ | Eden Gardens wicket is a good preparation for South Africa tour: Ashish Nehra

With a series in South Africa around the corner and a lot of cricket scheduled away from home, Sridhar said strengthening slip fielding is “one area that can contribute to the results we want to achieve in our away Tests.”

That being the case, Sridhar said slip catching is more difficult in the sub-continent. “In places where there is good carry and bounce, you know where to stand. In the sub-continent that is a challenge often because of two-paced wickets. Then, in England, the ball wobbles,” he said.

Such situations good for team spirit

Sridhar said situations such as this where a team spends more time in the dressing room than on the field and is in a spot of bother forges relationships.

“It is days like these that brings the team together, especially when it is in an adverse position. I always feel such days are wonderful for the team,” he said.

READ | India vs Sri Lanka: Happy to play on a testing wicket – Sanjay Bangar

And he is hopeful of a result. “If we can get another 270 overs (three days of play), this Test can definitely get a result…If conditions remain like this and you don’t know where the next run is coming from, I am sure (Mohammed) Shami and sultan of swing Bhuvneshwar Kumar would love these conditions,” he said.

On Kohli and rest

Like Kohli, Sridhar said a player’s workload is taken into consideration when the selectors and the team management decide whether he needs rest.

“Having said that each member in this team is very proud to represent their country at given opportunity. Knowing Virat, he wears his pride on his sleeve. As long as his body allows, he would not miss a single second of a match,” said Sridhar.

First Published: Nov 17, 2017 18:28 IST

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