Virat Kohli is playing at deliveries way outside off stump: Sunil Gavaskar questions Indian captain’s approach

Indian captain Virat Kohli leaves the field after being dismissed by Sam Curran. Pic: Getty Images
Indian captain Virat Kohli leaves the field after being dismissed by Sam Curran. Pic: Getty Images

Indian legend Sunil Gavaskar is not very pleased with skipper Virat Kohli’s approach in the Test series against England. He pointed out that the batter has been chasing deliveries way outside off with his footwork out of sync.

Virat Kohli, for the third time in the series, was caught flirting at a ball outside off stump on Sunday at Lord’s. He was looking good on 20 before perishing caught behind to Sam Curran, leaving India in a big hole at 55 for 3.

Reviewing Virat Kohli’s similar modes of dismissals in the ongoing Test series, Gavaskar said on Sony Sports Network:

"That method has been successful for him. He has got 8000 Test runs with that back and across movement. But he is playing at deliveries way outside off stump and a little too early in the innings. This time around, the foot is somewhere else, the bat is somewhere else, which means that he hasn’t really played well. It could be about this much-talked-about word intent but in a five-day game, every batsman goes in to score runs. It’s the method that differs.”

After Virat Kohli’s dismissal, India fought back courtesy a century stand between the under-fire duo of Cheteshwar Pujara (45) and Ajinkya Rahane (61), who added exactly 100 for the fourth wicket. However, three wickets late in the day put England back in command, leaving India reeling at 181 for 6.

Playing with ‘intent’ can get you in trouble at times: Gavaskar on Virat Kohli’s dismissal

Virat Kohli scored a patient 42 off 103 balls in the first innings before losing his concentration. However, he was a lot more aggressive in the second essay, scoring 20 off 31. The Indian captain also engaged in a verbal duel with Jimmy Anderson.

According to Gavaskar, there is no point in showing positive intent if it is going to hurt the team. The batting great explained:

"When you talk about this 'trying to take this attack to the opposition' approach, and if that is what intent is, it can get you into trouble like we saw. I think every batsman should be left alone to find his own method. This is a Test match. In ODI and T20I, it’s a completely different situation, but over here, what they need to look into is get themselves in and try to play in the old-fashioned V. Play only when you have fought through.”

India head into Day 5 of the Lord’s Test with a lead of 154 but only four wickets remaining. A lot will depend on Rishabh Pant, who is batting on 14 not out, on the final day.

Edited by Diptanil Roy

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