Kohli rates Bangalore win as best

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India skipper Virat Kohli has described his team’s series-leveling win against Australia as the best of his tenure as skipper.

Kohli’s men came from behind in the match to seal a dramatic fourth day 75 run victory on a sporting pitch in Bangalore.

Kohli was visibly fired-up during the fourth innings especially once Australia were on the ropes and would get into it with his opposite number Steve Smith.

In his post-match press conference Kohli said: “For sure. Till now, this is the best one definitely.

“I don’t want to say too much, because the game panned out the way it did, and there’s not much left to say. It was a quite emotional game for us, quite draining as well. Everyone got along together, we showed team spirit.”

The skipper feels that Australia’s focus on him allowed his team to fight back through Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane.

Australia’s Nathan Lyon had said they would look to target Kohli and cut off the head of the snake.

Kohli retorted: “A lot of people were talking about the head of the snake, but I think the snake did pretty well by itself, so it’s not just about one individual.

“I’m pretty happy if they keep focussing on the head of the snake, and the snake can sting from a lot of directions. I think some people need to keep that in mind, but I thought [this was] the sweetest victory for us.”

The captain could not praise his bowlers enough adding: “I think the first session on day two where we gave away only 45-odd runs [47 runs] and picked up two wickets when they could have taken the game away from us, I think that was probably the momentum change that we needed, and throughout the day we didn’t give more than 200 runs as we picked up six wickets.

“I think that for us was quite important, and something that you look for as a team. Someone has to step up and do the job for you.

“I think Jadeja was outstanding in the first innings along with our fast bowlers. Their spell again was very, very good, relentless pressure from one end by Umesh and Ishant and then Jadeja picking up those wickets later on.

“Those are the kind of things you need as a team to change the tide that’s going against you.

“One thing is that we never stopped trying. We didn’t give in, we didn’t let the opposition totally roll over us, we knew if they didn’t get a big first-innings total, day three – end of day two and day three – is the best time to bat here and day four is going to be very difficult.

“We saw the first-class stats, and no team had chased 120 in the fourth innings, so we knew, once we get 150-plus, we have a fair chance to go at them, and eventually we surprised ourselves by winning by 75, honestly. I thought it was going to be closer than that.”

The third Test at Ranchi will get underway on March 16 affording both sets of players a bit of a break in what has been a long season.

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