Not really, retorts Kohli

Not really, retorts Kohli

Virat Kohli downplayed Dale Steyn’s comments that the Indian batsmen were scared of the South African pace battery.

“I don’t think so, on a personal level I don’t think so. I mean off the fourth ball I was down the wicket against Steyn. It is not about getting frightened as he is a quality bowler and we all know that and we should be good enough to face him. I don’t think anyone in this Indian team is frightened of anything.

"Regardless of the loss the other day, you didn’t see anyone closing their eyes or swinging their bats around. We were trying hard to counter the bowling and they were bowling in great areas and no one was moving away from stumps, we were all trying to get into position to play correct shots but they pitched it in the right areas and were able to trouble us,” said Kohli on Saturday in his pre-match press conference.

While admitting that Steyn bowled brilliantly in Johannesburg, Kohli said there were no demons that they wouldn’t be able to negate in the opposition ranks. “Yeah, he was quite brilliant the other day, he is a world class bowler. To bowl three maiden overs when we are chasing 359 is a skill that is very rare.” Then he proceeded to describe the way out for the Indians.

“I don’t think we are caught in a trap. We always knew that we will get bounce and pace in South Africa and we had plans but when you are chasing 359 you have no choice but to play those shots. So that’s why we came up short in the last game. We have to sort of restrict them with our bowling first and then chase it down or vice-versa if we are batting first. The unfortunate part is that we didn’t get that many practice sessions or practice games,” he said.

Kohli also warned about being over aggressive against a set of bowlers which knows how to exploit the conditions. “Well not every time, the situation was such that last time you had to try and disrupt their length and score boundaries. I was pretty confident that I could take them on and when Rohit was finding it difficult for the ball to hit the bat, I told him to carry on and that there shouldn’t be a rash shot.”

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