India will play England in the five test-match series commencing today at Edgbaston. The Indian captain Virat Kohli shared his opinions about their game plan and his objectives to the press. India lost won the test series against England on their home soil in 2007. Kohli had a poor experience in 2014. He slammed just 134 runs from 6 innings and India lost the series with 1-3.
He said “Back in the day when I did not know better, these things used to bother me because I used to read a lot. But honestly – and I’m not saying this because I’m sitting here in front of all of you — I genuinely don’t read anything. I have no idea what’s going on,”
“After the first two Tests in South Africa, I had no idea what was going on. My only focus was on my preparation and where the team has to head. If I waste my energy on all these things, I’m compromising on my mindset already.
“Because when I walk out to bat, I have the bat in hand. Not people who sit on the outside who write and predict things.”
“I need to be in the most convinced and the most clear mental space that I can be and that happens when I’m just focused on what I need to do. Very soon, I’m going to complete 10 years. I didn’t think 10 years ago that I’d be sitting here in my career.
“So I have no complaints whatsoever and I’m not in the frame of mind to prove myself in any country. I just want to perform for the team, score runs for the team, and take Indian cricket forward and that’s my only motive,”
He said that he did not have a motive to achieve anything except playing for the team. When asked about the encounter with the cricketer James Anderson, he said: “It’s pretty simple.”
“You focus on what you need to do as a batsman, the plans that you want to take into the middle, and you follow your instinct. You have to have total confidence and belief in your own ability. That’s something that gives you total clarity when you head out to bat.
“I’m not saying that it happens every time. The fact that we’re able to do it, again and again, is the reason we’re playing at this level. That’s something we need to keep working hard on and not take for granted.”
Explaining the role of self-confidence in victory, Kohli said “… That’s basically what gives me clarity, which is to believe in my game and it boils down to belief. Even on a flat pitch in India, if you don’t have belief, you’ll get out, even if the ball is doing nothing. If you have the belief you can score a big hundred on a green wicket as well.
“It all boils down to what you think in your head. Over the last few years I’ve been more comfortable in my headspace and how I think about the game and my own game as well. I’ve worked hard on it. I’m pretty confident of my own ability and that’s the only thing I’m going to focus on.”
This is an ordeal for Kohli. He has been playing for the test team in 2011 and faced a fiery attack from James Anderson. In this context, he said “It is something that you need to constantly speak to the team about. You need to make sure that all the players and the management are on the same page. Especially when you have a long series and you know it’s going to be challenging you cannot afford to have individuals who are drifting away with their mindset.
“We keep speaking about it regularly. It’s a small thing that changes the mindset – when you take an adverse situation as an opportunity than something to be feared of, it totally changes the mindset. That’s constantly what we speak about.”
Speaking about his dual role as a skipper and the batsman, he said “… And to understand that the challenge comes in when the situation is not going your way, that’s when composure comes in. If you think about it as an opportunity — to be among the 15 or 16 players picked for the country when there are so many cricketers, to have the honour of stepping onto the field to play for India, if we are upset about it, there’s something wrong.
“We need to be excited about it, we need to take the good and bad equally, just be grateful for having the chance to represent our country and give our 100 percent. That’s something we’re going to be focused on this series,” he signed off.