India may have wrapped up the first Test against South Africa in just under three days but skipper Virat Kohli today said that there were “no demons” in the wicket, though he admitted it was more of a bowlers’ game.
Chasing a 218-run target on a turning track, the Proteas were bundled out for 109 runs in 39.5 overs in the final session as the match ended inside three days at the IS Bindra stadium here to give India a 1-0 lead in the four-Test series.
“I don’t think there were any demons in the wicket, the ball did not turn square at any stage, batsmen had to apply themselves but it was a bowlers’ game,” said Kohli at post match presentation ceremony.
In what turned out to be a low-scoring game, batsmen failed to sustain for long on the PCA track.
“We thought if we are finding it difficult on this wicket, it is going to be difficult for them (South Africa) as well,” said Kohli.
Major contribution from Murli Vijay (75 and 47) and Cheteshwar Pujara’s patient 77 in India’s second innings helped the hosts post a challenging target.
“You need mental strength at this level. (Vijay and Pujara) are two of the most solid guys we have. Had we applied more, we could have given them a bigger target,” he said.
Heaping praise on comeback man Ravindra Jadeja, who made a crucial 38 in the first innings to go with his eight wickets in the match, Kohli said: “I am happy for him (Jadeja), he went back, got lot of wickets in Ranji Trophy, scored runs as well. He is feeling good mentally now.
“People with all-round ability are hard to find, it is just a matter of him keeping his mental strength, and he can be an asset for India in the future,” he added.
Kohli said it was important to win the first Test after losing both the T20 and ODI series in the past one and half month.
“First Test as captain at home was a special occasion for me, it is a young team, building a strong team together. Seeing the way things have gone in the past month and half, the way we played here, a lot of credit has to go to the team,” said the skipper, who was playing his first Test as captain on the home soil.