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Sledging wasted on Kohli – Gillespie

1.54K   //    14 Sep 2017, 20:04 IST
viratkohli - cropped
India captain Virat Kohli

Jason Gillespie has urged Australia's bowlers to stick to their line and length against Virat Kohli, rather than using sledging to unsettle the India captain.

Chennai hosts the opening one-day international of the five-match series on Sunday and Kohli will undoubtedly pose the biggest threat to Australia's chances.

The India skipper has a prolific record against Steve Smith's side with 1002 runs to his name from 23 meetings, Kohli averaging 55.66 against his upcoming opponents.

On home soil his record is even better with 526 runs at 75.14, a record that includes three of his five centuries.

Trying to dislodge Kohli early will be pivotal for Australia and Gillespie believes discipline rather than verbal attacks will be key.

"Kohli is an amazing player. Once the field spreads, he can bat safely," the former pace bowler told the Times of India.

"I don't think Australia need to get into a verbal battle or get into staring competitions with Kohli. 

"The best way to put him under pressure is through disciplined bowling. I would like to see the Aussie quicks bowl bouncers throat-high to get him on the back foot, make him thinking about it. 

"The follow-up ball remains the key. Make him come forward inviting the drive. If there is movement off the wicket or in the air, then the edge comes into play.

"Maybe they can bowl on the stumps with two catchers on the on-side. It's about getting him out of his comfort zone."

Smith's bowling attack will be without Josh Hazlewood, James Pattinson and Mitchell Starc through injury – the latter being the biggest loss in Gillespie's opinion.

"Starc is Australia's premier fast bowler in ODIs," he added. "It's unfortunate that he is not part of the series. 

"But I feel the others can do the job. I don't expect [Pat] Cummins to play every ODI. Maybe two-three out of the five. 

"[Nathan] Coulter-Nile could play as many games as possible. I know the selectors think highly of Coulter-Nile because he bowls fast and hits the pitch hard. Hopefully he can perform well in India.

"The Indian attack has the edge. It appears to me that they have clear plans and are embracing the challenge of bowling on flat surfaces. 

"I'm sure the Aussies too will go in with similar attitude and they will not think that they will be belted around. Attitude is everything with regards to bowling in Indian conditions."

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