After losing the third Test, Indian captain Virat Kohli held back himself to speak anything related to Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara’s presence in the team. The senior batters again failed with the bat in this series. The batting lineup’s failure to score runs fairly consistently was one of the reasons that the Indian team lost the series in South Africa.
Rahane made 136 runs in three matches at an average of 22.66 that included a half-century which came during the second innings of the second Test. Pujara made 124 runs in three matches at an average of 20.66. He also made a single half-century which came during the second innings of the second Test match.
The Indian batting unit made 327 runs in the first Test and then failed to cross the 300-runs mark in the two matches. KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal played crucial knocks in the first Test but failed to play a significant knock in the entire series. Kohli made 79 runs off 201 balls during the first innings of the third Test and it was his only crucial knock in the series.
“We need to step up with the bat. There is no running away from that. To answer this question, I can’t sit here and talk about what’s going to happen in the future. That’s not for me to sit here and discuss. You have to speak to the selectors to find out what they have in mind, that’s not my job,” Virat Kohli said during the post-match conference.
They have done a lot for the team in Test cricket over the years: Virat Kohli
Kohli further added that the team has backed both Pujara and Rahane in the past because of their contribution to the team. He also mentioned that both the batters did well during crucial situations and had an important partnership in the second innings of the second Test.
“As I said before and I will say again, we have continued to back Cheteshwarand Ajinkya because of the kind of players they are and what they have done in Test cricket over the years. They have done well in crucial situations, you saw that in the 2nd Test as well with that important partnership in the 2nd innings which got us to a total that we could fight for,” he added.
“These are the kind of performances that we recognise as a team. What the selectors have in mind and what they decide to do, I obviously can’t comment on that at this moment, sitting here.”