What left the England great disturbed was the constant criticism around Kohli’s batting. Despite a fluent start to his knock, Kohli was undone by an impressive delivery from England captain Ben Stokes and critics were at it again.
Irrespective of a match situation, Virat Kohli always manages to emerge among the talking points of a Team India match. Such is his stature. On Sunday, however, Kohli was rather criticised than praised for his act during Edgbaston Test between India and England. Kohli’s on-field spat with Jonny Bairstow before the latter’s century was slammed by former cricketers. But what left England great Graeme Swann disturbed was the constant criticism around Kohli’s batting. Despite a fluent start to his knock, Kohli was undone by an impressive delivery from England captain Ben Stokes and critics were at it again.
It has been 953 days since Kohli last scored an international century. It was against Bangladesh in the historic Pink Ball Test in Kolkata that Kohli last reached the much-eluded three-figure mark. On Sunday, Kohli looked in fluent touch before being dismissed for 20 off 40 by an unplayable delivery from Stokes that took the outside edge and was completed by an alert Joe Root after the ball had popped out of the gloves of wicketkeeper Sam Billings.
Speaking to Sony Sports, Swann admitted that Indian commentators are at time harsh on Kohli, adding that the delivery “unplayable” and the catch was “lucky”.
“You can say what you want, I don’t care, who is batting in any period of Test history if you can survive that delivery you are very, very lucky. That is unplayable. It’s a lucky catch in the end,” Swann said.
“Regardless, if you are looking to get on the front foot, back foot that ball is a ripsnorter. For an English point of view, I often find that whenever Indian commentators talk about Virat, I always think ‘wow they are quite harsh on him’. The standards are so high for Virat, I thought he was very at ease today,” he added.
Further defending the modern-era great on his batting stance against that delivery from Stokes, the former spinner added, “Yes, he is looking to get forward, but he knows that the England bowlers, Broad and Anderson, are looking to pitch it up. Jimmy won’t waste his time bowling many short ones to Virat. I think it was clever batting.”
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