Virat Kohli says India must learn how to cross the finish line after squandering Southampton advantage

Virat Kohli is not content with India just being 'competitive' in overseas tours

Sudhir Gupta 2018/09/03

Virat Kohli lauded the intensity shown by his men in the fourth Test against England at Southampton but the India skipper believes it is imperative for his side to learn the art of finishing the job.

Chasing 245 to win, India fell to a 60-run defeat at the Ageas Bowl as England clinched the five-match series 3-1 with a match to spare. It was once again a case of so near, and yet so far for the visitors who suffered a narrow 1-2 defeat to South Africa on their previous overseas tour.

Speaking after the Southampton defeat, Kohli stressed on the importance of capitalising on advantageous positions such as the first innings where India were well placed to take a commanding lead.

“We can look at the scoreboard and say we were only 30 or 50 runs away, but we have to recognise that when we are in the midst of a situation, and not later. We know that we have played good cricket but we cannot say again and again ourselves that we have competed,” Kohli said.

“When you come so close, there is an art of crossing the line as well, which we will have to learn. We have the ability, which is why we are getting close to a result. But when a pressure situation comes, how we react to it, is something we have to work on a bit,” he added.

India’s batting collapsed after Kohli’s dismissal in the second innings.

It was once again a poor start to the series which proved costly for Kohli’s men. In South Africa, they went down 0-2 before bouncing back with a win in the final Test and in England, they suffered losses at Edgbaston and Lord’s before notching up a win at Trent Bridge.

The India skipper believes his side need to start overseas series much better if they are to have a better chance of wins.

“Look we’ve spoken about the fact that even during the match when we’re in a driving position, we should be able to capitalise on it and not let the opposition come in, and fight back again and again. We can take a leaf out of that. Nottingham we did that, for three days we were relentless and on top,” the 29-year-old explained.

“So we need to think about how to start a series like that as well. As a group, we need to be more relentless when we start a series and a bit more expressive and fearless at the beginning of a series,” he added.

The two sides will lock horns now in the fifth and final Test which gets underway at The Oval on September 7.

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