Will smile more when we win overseas, rues Virat Kohli

DHARAMSALA: India captain Virat Kohli today said that he would wear a “broader smile” on his face once the current team conquers an overseas season.

Asked why he does not look happy even after 10 wins in 13 Tests over India’s longest home season in recent times, the skipper replied, “It is a classic case of understanding that this is not the end of anything.”

“No need to get over excited with whatever we have done. We are very happy with No 1 ranking in the world but our main challenge begins now.

If we can conquer the overseas season, that’s when you will see a broader smile on my face when I sit down for the press conference.”

For Kohli, the biggest gain has been building a team for the future with all these wins at home. “It is a very proud moment. Playing good cricket all season, especially in the home season, we dominated all of it.

It was very important for a young side to do so and build a team for the future so that we can give such performances consistently. That we did in this whole season and it was important how we responded to difficult situations.”

Kohli also acknowledged the hard yards put in by the support staff in team’s success. “The credit goes to all of them, support staff’s role is not highlighted much but their contribution is nearly 40 percent because they handle the players’ mindset and their skills and working hard with them, giving them good feedback, so these are important things. So this is a team effort, rather this is a squad effort because it involves everyone. Credit goes to everyone in this squad.”

Kohli praised Ajinkya Rahane’s captaincy and revealed that it was his deputy who was in favour of playing five bowlers. Kuldeep Yadav was picked because of his X-factor.

“I spoke to Jinks (Rahane’s team nickname) before the game and he asked me what I feel. I said, this is your game and you have to be comfortable with playing play four or five bowlers. He instantly said five bowlers because he understands the workloads of the guys throughout the whole season.

“So that fifth bowler, that was Anil bhai and Jinks and myself, we all had a discussion. Kuldeep was the X factor, they hadn’t played him, they hadn’t seen him much and he turned out to the difference in the game.

“I think from 130 for 1 to 300 all out on the same day can really demoralise the opposition. And I think it was a great call on Jinx and Anil bhai’s part.”