Not taking the England team for "granted", says Virat Kohli
The first of the 5-match Test series begins in Rajkot on Wednesday.
Indian Test captain Virat Kohli admitted that his team is not taking the visitors for “granted” as they are a team which has performed well in India over the years. The last time England toured India was in 2012/13 where they thumped the hosts to clinch the series 2-1 after losing the first Test. But the biggest drawback for the Three Lions this time around is that they are without the likes of Graeme Swann, Monty Panesar and Kevin Pietersen who were the main performers four years back.
As per the reports from the Official Facebook page of the Indian Cricket Team, during a pre-match conference, Virat said, “Well the combination is something I would not speak about at this stage. I wouldn’t say that England struggled; they played really well in the first Test, in the second test Bangladesh played better in their conditions. England is a side that has come to India last time and played well, so we not going to anything for granted.”
It is a long time since India has hosted a 5-match Test series, and they will play a total of 13 Tests in the on-going home season, with Australia and Bangladesh to visit India later on.
“We are playing very good cricket and need to focus on our strengths, but you cannot ignore your opposition altogether. At the same time you have to be confident in what you want to do as a captain and that’s the one thing that we have focused on, and that’s the main reason we are getting the results in the last 12-14 months and that’s something that we want to continue,” added the skipper.
The last time India won a Test series against England was back in 2008/09, and since then the European team has shown complete domination over the Indian cricket team winning all the three series following that.
The Delhiite feels that his players have instilled a feeling of togetherness in the team and depend on collective performances rather than just individuals. Regarding the matter, the skipper said, “This team has bought into the idea of collectively performing is better than some individual performances and not winning. So that’s one thing that has been really pleasing for me as a captain.”
Apart from the 5 Tests, England will re-visit India in January for 3 One-day Internationals and 3 T20Is.