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  Ishant can lead attack: Virat Kohli

Ishant can lead attack: Virat Kohli

Published : Nov 14, 2015, 12:49 am IST
Updated : Nov 14, 2015, 12:49 am IST

With three huge victories in a row, India Test skipper Virat Kohli hopes to keep the winning momentum going ahead of their second Test against South Africa, starting here on Saturday.

With three huge victories in a row, India Test skipper Virat Kohli hopes to keep the winning momentum going ahead of their second Test against South Africa, starting here on Saturday.

Under M.S. Dhoni’s leadership, India lost the T20 and ODI series, but Kohli, with already a convincing win at Mohali, is keen to continue the winning run.

 

“We have to execute the skills better than the opposition to win a game of cricket and that is our main aim. Obviously knowing the conditions a little more than the others inside our squad will be helpful in me giving the inputs that are required to go through this Test match,” said Kohli on Friday.

As dark clouds hovered over the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium with more rain expected over the next few days, Kohli admitted to tweak the playing XI accordingly. “It does play a part, especially knowing that you might not have full game time. It does sort of bring about a few changes as far as the team combination is concerned. The team management and myself have spoken about it. We will make the necessary changes,” added the Delhi batsman, who turned 27 last week.

 

“With Ishant (Sharma) coming in, he brings in a lot of experience. He’s bowled well in sub-continent conditions, knows how to reverse swing the ball, can lead the pace attack. As I mentioned before, the combination can or will change according to the conditions.”

Meanwhile, Kohli lauded Royal Challe ngers Bangalore team-mate and South Africa batsman AB de Villiers on his 100th Test game. “I want to congratulate him on playing his 100th Test. As an individual, I know him well. He’s a very genuine and good person. As an opponent, he plays hard cricket,” he mentioned.

With the Proteas in crisis owing to their injured strike bowlers — Vernon Philander and Dale Steyn — Kohli said, “I’m not really worried about that. What we want to do is go out there and play positive cricket and make life as difficult as we can for the opposition,” he explained.

 

Meanwhile, South Africa captain Hashim Amla admitted the loss of Steyn and Philander affected their preparations. “Obviously, losing Dale — one of the best bowlers in the world — and Philander — arguably the best all-rounder in the world —certainly changes the dynamics of the team. But the guys who will replace them are quality cricketers,” said Amla.

With pacer Kyle Abbot set to take Philander’s spot in the playing XI, Amla heaped praise of the youngster. “Kyle has been one of our outstanding reserve bowlers in the last couple of years. Whenever he has got an opportunity — in all formats — he has done exceptionally well,” he asserted.

 

Location: India, Karnataka, Bengaluru