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October 2018
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Virat Kohli And Team India Gear Up For 1st ODI vs Windies With A Game Of Keepy-Uppy        Shuttler Srikanth out; Saina in final of Denmark Open        Amritsar tragedy: Women, children among 61 killed as rushing trains crush Dussehra revellers        Rahul Gandhi calls on Sri Lankan PM        Top Afghan Police Chief Killed In Shooting, US General Unhurt        Putin says IS seized 700 hostages in Syria; executing some        Ten-wicket Abbas destroys Australia for Pakistan's series win        Vijayan urges UAE Keralites to back salary challenge        Japan introduces Artificial Intelligence technology to ease business        Reliance Industries posts net profit of Rs 9516cr in Q2        ISL: Super-sub Maimouni Hands ATK First Win        Chris Morris returns for Australia tour        PCB chief urges Australia to return to Pakistan        Sri Lankan President assured of "fullest cooperation" by PM Modi        VP Naidu arrives in Brussels for 12th ASEM Summit        In Turkey, Pompeo discusses Iranian oil consumption, Khashoggi's disappearance        PNB Scam: ED seizes more assets of Modi, Choksi        Andhra CM visits cyclone-hit areas in Srikakulam        #MeToo fallout: MJ Akbar resigns as minister of state for external affairs        SC writ fails in Sabarimala, not a single young woman allowed by protesters        
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Sports News
English summer: Virat the batsman wins, Virat the captain loses
 
New Delhi, Sep 12 (PTI) Virat Kohli the batsman exorcised the ghosts of a horrendous 2014 series but his captaincy left a lot to be desired in the just-concluded series against England which again turned out to be a case of 'what it could have been'.

Kohli is, in fact, right when he says that barring Lord's Test, they were not totally outplayed but England played better cricket during key moments during the 1-4 loss.

The series was testimony that batsman Kohli is heads and shoulders above his peers not just in India but in world cricket.

The 593 runs, with two hundreds and two half centuries, and his battle of attrition with old nemesis Jimmy Anderson will remain stuff of legends.

The difference was stark with the second-highest scorer being KL Rahul -- 299 runs, 149 of those coming in a dead rubber when the pressure was off.

Where Kohli erred was not realising that his teammates were not as prepared for testing English conditions as he was. The Indian team reduced the duration of its lone practice game against County Champions Essex, a move that was criticised by none other than Sunil Gavaskar.

Kohli, however, differed stating that practice matches are worth it only if there is a good opposition to compete against and pitches of Test quality.

'Kohli should understand that if he doesn't play for a month, he would still come out and score runs. But others need practice. And in practice games you won't get Test quality attacks. But the batsmen and bowlers in match situation add miles to their legs. It's better than taking throwdowns," Gavaskar had said on air for the series broadcasters.

The biggest problem that plagued India was dodgy team selection.

Cheteshwar Pujara, who played a significant role in the Trent Bridge victory and scored a determined hundred was dropped from the first Test based on his poor county form.

The Test specialist ended with 278 runs in the series.

Kohli's over-dependence on Hardik Pandya's all-round abilities in red ball cricket can also be questioned. A total of 164 runs including a half century at a time when India was about to declare and a five-wicket haul in Trent Bridge were his only tangible contributions across four Tests.

That he never possessed the defensive technique to bat at No 6 was evident and he was ill at ease against the swinging deliveries.

His opposite number Sam Curran became an x-factor in the series with two match winning all round performances -- at Edgbaston (1st Test) and the series-clinching fourth game at Southampton.

The skipper's persistence with Shikhar Dhawan, who has been a walking wicket outside the sub-continent, also created problems at the top of the order.

Since the 2013 South Africa tour, Dhawan has shown both lack of technique and temperament in top Test playing nations.

A total of 162 runs in eight innings probably will shut doors on his Test career for the time being as Prithvi Shaw and Mayank Agarwal are waiting in the wings for their opportunity.

While Kohli was unlucky to lose all five tosses but his reading of the pitches and the team combinations left a lot to be desired.

Not picking a second spinner in Edgbaston, where the pitch offered turn and bounce, was an error. It was compounded by the choice of a second spinner at the Lord's where conditions aided seamers.

While India inarguably have the best set of fast bowlers who used the conditions well, they were often guilty of not being able to get rid of the England lower order that showed depth and character.

It happened in second innings at Edgbaston, both innings at Southampton and also at the Oval.

But it was nonetheless a decent performance from Ishant Sharma (18), Jasprit Bumrah (16) and Mohammed Shami (14) who gave it their all during the series.

Ravichandran Ashwin lacked the bite when he had the most helpful conditions in Southampton, a pitch that could have been ideal for someone like Ravindra Jadeja.

Just that Broad and Anderson were a bit more relentless with fine support from Curran, Ben Stokes and Moeen Ali.

The communication regarding where individuals stood also came under scanner after Karun Nair, an original selection was made to warm the benches even as Hanuma Vihari pipped him in playing eleven.

Vihari scored a gutsy 56 but would have bagged a pair had Stuart Broad appealed for DRS for a plumb leg before decision in the first innings.

The silver lining will certainly be KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant's hundreds in the fourth innings chase.

But Pant's glovework was par and Rahul finally got his mojo back after nine consecutive failures.

Sanjay Manjrekar put it aptly on Twitter.

'While applauding KL Rahul and Pant, might be best in the interest of Indian cricket to not attach great importance to the last Test result, even if India had won. Assessment and lessons learnt should be on the basis of What happened till the series was alive,' Manjrekar tweeted.

To sum it up, India have lost six away Test matches this year at a time when the chief coach Ravi Shastri says that this is the best travelling team.

Facts are sacrosanct and they tell a different story even though skipper Kohli was a touch irritated when a scribe asked him a question about the supposed tall claims made by the coach.

Come December, Kohli's India will have a shot at Australia, a team that won't have David Warner and Steve Smith, the two game changers.

Kohli would be hoping for a merry Christmas Down Under.


Virat Kohli And Team India Gear Up For 1st ODI vs Windies With A Game Of Keepy-Uppy
Shuttler Srikanth out; Saina in final of Denmark Open
Ten-wicket Abbas destroys Australia for Pakistan's series win
ISL: Super-sub Maimouni Hands ATK First Win
Chris Morris returns for Australia tour
PCB chief urges Australia to return to Pakistan
Records 'King Kohli' Can Break in Upcoming ODI Series vs Windies
Sanath Jayasuriya charged for breaching ICC anti-corruption code
Prithvi Shaw, Rishabh Pant Move Up In ICC Test Rankings
India vs China: India keep Red Dragons at bay
After more than 2 decades: An India-China clash on football field
Federer fires to join Djokovic in Shanghai semis
Test Debutant Shardul Thakur hobbles out after sustaining groin strain
Will take a call on retirement after Asian Para Games: Jhajharia
Sindhu too comes out in support of #metoo movement
Youth Olympics: Manu Bhaker puts Asian Games disappointment behind, shoots gold in 10m pistol
Rohit Sharma to turn up for Mumbai in Hazare quarters
La Liga: Barca-Valencia ends in a draw as Sevilla climbs top of the table
PBL 2018 Auction: Sindhu, Saina, Srikanth bought for 80 lakh
'Never in a million years' - Hamilton grabs 80th pole as Vettel flounders
KERALA NEWS
Vijayan urges UAE Keralites to back salary challenge
 (Abu Dhabi, Oct 18, 2018): Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has urged Keralite business  
Sabarimala row: Protests against SC verdict continue
Balabhaskar's wife Lakshmi shifted to ICU
Idukki dam's one shutter opened
INTERNATIONAL NEWS
Top Afghan Police Chief Killed In Shooting, US General Unhurt
 (Kandahar, oct 19, 2018):Gen. Abdul Razeq, one of Afghanistan's most powerful security offici
Putin says IS seized 700 hostages in Syria; executing some
Sri Lankan President assured of "fullest cooperation" by PM Modi
VP Naidu arrives in Brussels for 12th ASEM Summit
NATIONAL NEWS
Amritsar tragedy: Women, children among 61 killed as rushing trains crush Dussehra revellers
 (CHANDIGARH, oct 19, 2018):At least 61 people, including women and children, were mowed down
Rahul Gandhi calls on Sri Lankan PM
PNB Scam: ED seizes more assets of Modi, Choksi
Andhra CM visits cyclone-hit areas in Srikakulam
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