Once Those Three Wickets Fell, It Was Clear India Were Not Going To Survive For Too Long: Sunil Gavaskar

Sunil Gavaskar

Former captain Sunil Gavaskar talked about India‘s batting collapse on Day 4 in the third Test at Headingley, where the visitors lost their last 8 wickets for 63 runs after losing just two on Day 3 and were in a position to extend the game.

However, Ollie Robinson, who bagged his second five-wicket haul of the series, in support of other bowlers routed through India’s line-up in the first session of the day.

Cheteshwar Pujara couldn’t add to his overnight score of 91 and was the first to be dismissed. Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane departed in quick succession. None of the other incoming batters provided any resistance against the new ball and India conceded an innings loss – only their second innings loss under Kohli.

Cheteshwar Pujara
Cheteshwar Pujara returned to form with 91* (Image Credit: Twitter)

Sunil Gavaskar said while the loss was inevitable after India lost its middle-order, but the innings folded up sooner than he expected.

“We did have some rear guard action at Lord’s, when I think England lost the plot more than anything else. Once those top three wickets fell, it was clear they were not going to be able to survive for too long. But yes, for seven wickets to fall in 54 minutes is, by any stretch of imagination, a little hard to take,” Sunil Gavaskar said while speaking on Sony Networks. 

India to stick with 5 specialist batsmen, hints Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli downplayed the suggestion of playing 6 specialist batsmen instead of five, plus the wicketkeeper, which they have employed in the three Tests so far. Despite the team suffering frequent collapses in the past year, the skipper reckons an extra batsman wouldn’t be able to add much if the rest of the batting line-up couldn’t.

Playing 6 specialist batsmen would mean dropping either all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja or a pacer. Kohli is unwilling to do that – he believes their best chance of taking all 20 wickets is with this bowling template.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli (Image: Twitter)

“I have never believed in that balance. Because either you can try to save a defeat or try to win the game. We have drawn games in the past with similar number of batters in the team. So, if your top six or seven don’t do the job, that extra batter is no guarantee of bailing you out every time,” Virat Kohli said at the post-match press conference at Headingley.

“If you don’t have the ability or the resources of taking 20 wickets going into as Test, then you are only playing for two results. And that’s not how we play.”

There is little time for India to ponder much over their loss – the fourth Test, at Kennington Oval, starts September 2.

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