While Virat Kohli has changed his Test line-up every single match since he took over the India captaincy, former skipper Sourav Ganguly has urged the current captain to resist that temptation in the second Test against England at Lord’s.
India fell to a 31-run defeat in the first Test of the five-match series at Edgbaston with the visitors’ batting – apart from that of the skipper himself – failing to perform.
“If you’ve to win a Test then everyone has to score runs. This was the first Test in a five-match series and I think this team has the capability to come back & play well. Ajinkya Rahane & Murali Vijay will have to show some determination since they have scored runs in these conditions before,” Ganguly wrote on his Instagram.
If you've to win a Test then everyone has to score runs. The other batsmen have to score 100's as well. #ViratKohli played very well otherwise India would have been out of the match on the 2nd day itself. This was the first Test in a 5 match series & I think this team has the capability to come back & play well. #AjinkyaRahane & #MuraliVijay will have to show some determination since they have scored runs in these conditions before. I don't think the captain is responsible for the loss. If you're the captain then you'll be criticised for a loss the same way as you're congratulated for a win. One criticism for @Virat.Kohli is that he should give a consistent run to his batters & more time before dropping them. The failure against swing in English conditions can't be used as an excuse any more as everyone knows that its what you get when you come to England. You can't be excused all the time & we have lost before in 2011 & 2014. You've to bat well. It's a very well known fact that the ball will swing in England the same way as Australia is known for its pacy wickets. So if previously you've scored runs there is no reason you can't now. The captain should give confidence to his players. It's his team & only he can change their mindset. He will have to sit with them & tell them that if he can do it so can they. He should give them time & tell them to go out & play without any fear. It is true that after continuous chopping & changing of the playing XI, players can get afraid that after all these years they've failed to garner the faith of the team management." The good thing about the great teams of the past - whether it be #Australia, #SouthAfrica or our very own team which won the Test series here in 2007 - was that the boys used to play both formats of the game - #SachinTendulkar, #RahulDravid, #VirenderSehwag, including myself. So even if you played badly in 1 or 2 matches you got a lot of time to get back into form at the international level. Playing & scoring 150 in first-class cricket can't compensate for international cricket. In this team no batsman except Virat plays all the formats. - SG
“One criticism for Virat Kohli is that he should give a consistent run to his batters & more time before dropping them. The failure against swing in English conditions can’t be used as an excuse any more as everyone knows that it’s what you get when you come to England,” he continued.
“You can’t be excused all the time & we have lost before in 2011 & 2014. You’ve to bat well. It’s a very well known fact that the ball will swing in England the same way as Australia is known for its pacy wickets. So if previously you’ve scored runs, there is no reason you can’t now.”
It remains to be seen if Kohli takes up the former India skipper’s advise in the Lord’s Test which gets underway on August 9.
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