Hard-fought wins will make Virat Kohli stronger: Sourav Ganguly

Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli

It took India a little more than a session to bundle England out for 158 in the second innings to go 1-0 up in the five match series.

The spinners more than did the job for India but clearly the biggest difference between the two sides was the Man of the Match, Virat Kohli.

Kohli, who led from the front with a sparkling 167 in the first innings, recorded his 13th Test half-century as he raised his bat to an applauding home crowd.

Jayant, the batsman, once again proved his worth after India were reduced to 162/9 in the second innings. "I don't think it would have given them any psychological advantage because ultimately our target was to get close to 400 runs and we achieved it", he reasoned. "This is going to make Virat Kohli stronger", he said.

At Visakhapatnam, Cook scored a well-crafted 54 and put on 75 runs with rookie Haseeb Hameed to raise England's hopes of a draw before the Indian bowlers struck.

Armed with two reviews and a new ball after the 80th over, Kohli continued with Ashwin and Jadeja for a few overs before introducing Mohammed Shami and Jayant Yadav at opposite ends, and both didn't disappoint.

Ben Stokes was uncharacteristically restrained as he made 6 from 33 balls before Jayant Yadav cleaned him up to leave England 115 for 5.

Moeen Ali and Ben Stokes fell soon after and despite Joe Root still being in the middle, England were never really in the game.

Indian spinners were thwarted by a splendid display of ultra-defensive batting by England before the hosts edged ahead dismissing rival skipper Alastair Cook on an engrossing fourth day of the second cricket Test.

"Yes, definitely that's why we play five bowlers, we don't play only spinners, we play fast bowlers as well, because we understand their contribution is also important", Kohli said on the key role played by pacers. A composed 35 in a 60+ run stand with Ashwin ushered India to 400 in the first innings.

After conceding a 200-run deficit in the first innings, England will take heart from their spirited bowling second time around.

Captain Alastair Cook believes England can "hold their heads up high" despite falling to a 246-run defeat to India in the second Test in Vizag. The problem for England, though, is that the two replacement options are Gary Ballance, who has been very bad in the last few matches, before being dropped, and Jos Buttler, who has played little to no first-class cricket and hasn't really convinced in the Test match game.

The Indian team needed only three wickets for the 1-0 lead in the test series which seemed pretty much like a cake walk with 57 overs left in the match.

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