India crumbled due to relentless pressure from England, first-innings collapse was bizarre: Kohli

LEEDS: India’s meek surrender in the first innings of the third Test was “bizarre” for skipper Virat Kohli, who said they crumbled in the face of relentless pressure created by the England bowlers.
India lost the Leeds Test by an innings and 76 runs as England levelled the five-match series 1-1.
Kohli admitted after being all out for 78, they were always playing a catchup game.
“Basically down to scoreboard pressure… Always up against it when you get out for under 80, and the opposition puts up such a big score,” Kohli said at the post-match presentation.
“But we did well to stay in the game yesterday, fight back as much as we could, and gave ourselves a chance. But the pressure today was outstanding from the England bowlers and eventually they got the results they wanted,” he said.
The India captain said the batting collapse they suffered in the first innings was “quite bizarre” after their stupendous show in the Lord’s Test. “It can happen in this country, batting collapses. We thought the pitch was good to bat on, coming on nicely. But the discipline forced mistakes and the pressure was relentless. Difficult to cope when you’re not scoring runs. That caused the batting order to crumble,” he said.
Asked if, in hindsight, he would say that the decision to bat was a mistake, Kohli disagreed.
“No, pitch looked good to bat on, when England batted it was a different ball game because we weren’t as good with the ball.
The result is a reflection of how the teams played in this game, we expected them to bounce back.”
Kohli said they can’t always depend on the lower-order batsmen to rescue them like it happened in Lord’s where Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah shocked England with their gritty batting.
“Depth, it’s an argument you can have. The top order has to give enough runs for the lower middle order to step up. We did pretty well in the first two games, when you have a result like this you can’t take too much from it. As a batting group we need to stay close and confident, even after 36 all out (in Australia) we came back,” he said.
Kohli remained non-committal on if one more spinner will be added in the next Test, starting September 2 at the Oval.
“It depends on the pitch. We will assess the surface, how much moisture is there and our decision will be based on that. I think this template works, the four seamers (in these conditions). For sure, we set the template, you’re playing Test cricket and we’ve bounced back in the past.
“There are things we need to improve but we will take pride in trying to correct those errors, something we are looking forward to,” he said.
England skipper Joe Root cold not stop smiling after his team’s “clinical performance.” “It was fantastic, clinical performance, the two big lads were exceptional, built pressure early on. Three maidens this morning, and we felt we were in a good place to take wickets. When chances came we took them,” he said.

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