Virat Kohli has acknowledged that not being able to contribute significantly to team India’s cause was “eating him up,” and that he occasionally let expectations get the better of him in his attempt to hit a Test hundred.
After returning to form in ODIs and T20Is, the lengthy wait for his 28th Test hundred ended over in the fourth Test against Australia in Ahmedabad, where he hit a magnificent 186. The last time Kohli scored a hundred in a Test match was against Bangladesh in November 2019.
“Honestly, I’ve let the complications grow on me a bit because of my shortcomings,” Kohli told coach Rahul Dravid in a chat on bcci.tv.
“The desperation to get to the three-figure mark is something that can grow on you as a batsman. I let that happen to me to a certain extent. But a flip side to it is, I’m not a guy who is happy with 40-45. I take a lot of pride in performing for the team.
“It’s not like when Virat Kohli should stand out. When I’m batting on 40, I know I can get a 150. That was eating me up a lot.
“Why am I not able to get that big score for the team? Because I took pride in the fact that when the team needed me, I stood up, scoring in difficult conditions. The fact that I wasn’t able to do that, was bothering me,” he added.
The landmark century – his 75th international ton – came after a patient innings of 241 balls as he eased a Nathan Lyon delivery for a single. He then accelerated and made Australia’s bowlers pay, before falling to off-spinner Todd Murphy in the final session as India’s innings finished on 571 in response to Australia’s 480. Of his 28 Test cricket hundreds, it was Kohli’s second-slowest innings.
Crediting his fitness and training for being able to bat for extended periods of time, Kohli said, “I can bat four sessions, I can bat five sessions, that’s where the fitness and physical preparation comes into play for me.
“I go into the field relaxed because I know I can bat in many ways. I am not desperate if I play three sessions and feel like I am breaking down and I need to get fast runs otherwise I won’t be able to stay out there for long,” he said.
He further added: “I am pretty happy scoring 30 runs in a session and not hitting a boundary and absolutely not desperate because I know that boundaries will come and even if I have to play like this I can bat six sessions and get a 150.”
Watch the entire chat here.
Quotes courtesy: PTI