Victory at Centurion is testament to India’s global prowess: Kohli
The opening test victory over South Africa here is a testament to the “versatile side” India has become in the longest format, said skipper Virat Kohli, describing Centurion as “the toughest” among all sites in South Africa.
India wrapped up a memorable 2021 in style by bringing down South Africa’s citadel, Supersport Park, as they handed the Proteas a 113-point loss in the opening test. It was a perfect end to the year in which the Indians dominated Australia in their own backyard despite injuries.
“Testing series in South Africa is not easy and Centurion is obviously the most difficult of them all,” Kohli told bcci.tv.
While the India batters did well to secure substantial leads in both innings, the pace unit ran through the South African batting roster, picking 18 wickets. “We ended up getting a result in four days which is a testament to the fact that we became the team we are today and the strength of the team was fully on display,” Kohli said.
“We were just looking for opportunities to win the game and that’s how we play cricket now and we have the opportunity at any stage to jump on it,” he added.
Having never won a series in South Africa, Kohli believes this victory is a ‘golden opportunity’ for the Indian team to put pressure on the home side in the second test and get a result favorable.
“ It’s a great position to be, to be 1-0 away, putting the opposition under pressure again in the second test is a golden opportunity for us and something that every player expects with impatience.
“It sets us up wonderfully for the Wanderers, we can go out there and be more positive and optimistic. Thinking back to the past year when India achieved historic success in Australia and is conducting a series of tests in England, which would be completed next year due to an outbreak of COVID-19, Kohli said that the team grew confident with every passing game.
“The new year is a very good marker to analyze how you have played your cricket and I think we have played exceptional cricket over the past 2-3 years especially abroad.
“We are a team that gets better and becomes more confident with the number of players we play in cricket. Substitute vice-test captain KL Rahul, who was also named player of the match for his fabulous 123-point shot in the opening innings, was also delighted with the victory.
“Coming to a country like South Africa and defeating them in their own stronghold is very special. “This is the second such victory for us, one in Gabba and now one in Centurion. Hope we can build on that and win the series, ” Rahul said.
(This story was not edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)