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Brilliant Kohli rides luck to save India

03 August, 2018, 09:46 | Author: Tommie Newton
  • Mohammed Shami's performance and fitness will be key for India in this series

He was sure-footed even when facing the awkward testing lengths of Ben Stokes, committing fully to his drives and guiding the ball off the back foot with the utmost sense of the height of the ball and his position on the crease.

In fact, his total beat the combined scores in his 10 previous innings in England from India's five-test tour in 2014. But, then came the resistance from Kohli and it went on and on before finally perishing after another gritty innings in whites.

Had Dawid Malan pouched the easier of the two chances that came to him at second slip, when Kohli was on just 21, it could all be very different and India, you'd imagine, would be out of it.

From then on, he added the next 49 runs in brisk pace knowing they had only one wicket in hand.

Despite losing partners at regular intervals, Kohli's determination did not waver.

Earlier, England resumed from 285-9 overnight and Mohammed Shami found Curran's edge to complete the hosts' collapse from 216-3 to 287 all out.

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Although India fell short of England's total by 13 runs, Kohli's innings will surely add a spring to the Indians' steps, and with the added incentive of Ashwin knocking over Alastair Cook's stumps in an exact replay from his first innings dismissal, giving India hopes of scripting a historic Test match win. In the 92 runs scored between the last two pairs, Umesh and Ishant only managed 6. James Anderson showed why he was one of the best in the world, consistently hitting the right areas to never let Kohli off the hook.

And, young Curran was bowled over by the Indian captain's match-changing knock.

To be considered a truly great Test batsman - he will already be remembered as an all-time legend in one-day cricket - Kohli has to score runs in England. 'He did nick a lot of balls outside off stump that didn't carry, so we stuck to our plans. "We stuck to our plans very well against him, and on another day they would carry", Curran said.

Virat Kohli's brilliant century was an "eye-opener" to Sam Curran on the day the young England left-armer proved he too has the ability to be a match-winner in Test cricket. I can't really remember it.

As for his own performance, Curran added: 'Personally, it was a pretty special day for me with the ball.

"We have always spoken about taking the wicket out of the equation and specially with how good the wickets are, the modern day batsman actually enjoy playing in this wicket".

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