Former India wicketkeeper-batsman Farokh Engineer has hailed Virat Kohli for his aggressive captaincy against England in the ongoing Test series. However, he also said that Kohli needs to know where to draw the line.
There have been mixed reactions to Kohli’s passionate outbursts during the Lord’s Test. A fired-up India defeated England by 151 runs to take a 1-0 lead in the five-match series.
Speaking to Sports Tak, Engineer lauded Kohli’s passion, but advised him against going overboard, saying:
“I admire Virat for that. He has been an aggressive captain. It’s good. Of course, it has to be within limits. Otherwise, the umpire or the match referee can intervene.”
“Maybe sometimes, yes (should he tone down his aggression?). He gets a bit too carried away at times. But I like his aggression. He is a very good captain. I am all for it. He is, I think, one of the finest batsmen in the world,” the 83-year-old added.
Kohli was involved in verbal altercations with James Anderson during the Test. Anderson and Indian pacer Jasprit Bumrah also had a go at each other in what was a fiercely contested Test match.
Speaking from his experience, Engineer revealed that Englishmen don’t like getting it back. Known as a fiery character when he was on the field, the former cricketer recalled:
“They used to call us ‘bloody Indians’. They ridiculed our accents, but I answered them back. I gave it back to them on the pitch by scoring runs and wicketkeeping and all that. And by gaining respect.”
“Oh yes, they don’t like it because they are not used to getting it back. They are used to getting one way. We Indians were used to keeping quiet. But I was the first person to start giving it back to them,” Engineer added.
Bumrah and Shami were ‘khadoos’, their partnership enabled Kohli to declare: Farokh Engineer
Going into Day 5 of the Lord’s Test, England had the upper hand. However, an unexpected ninth-wicket stand of 89 runs between Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami allowed India to set England a challenging target of 272 runs to win the Test.
Praising India’s bowling duo for their significant contribution with the bat, Engineer said:
“Also, they (England) do sledging, so that your batsman lose confidence. But Bumrah and Shami were khadoos (stubborn); they replied in their own way. They couldn’t bat very well, but they knew how to survive. By surviving, they got a lot of runs, and those runs were very important in enabling Virat to declare the innings. That was humiliating for England.”
India and England will now meet in the third Test at Headingley in Leeds, which starts on August 25.
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