Indian team created history by winning their first ever Test series against Australia in Australia. As the SCG Test was declared a draw thanks to continuous rain on day five as well, Indian team ended winners by 2-1 in the four-match series.
Cheteshwar Pujara won the Man of the Match and the Man of the series award for his three centuries laden 500 plus runs in the series, but captain Virat Kohli gave equal credit to the Indian bowling unit, especially the likes of Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammad Shami, and Ishant Sharma, along with Umesh Yadav and Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
Not only in Australia, the fast bowlers had done their job even in England and South Africa but batsmen let them down in the two preceding tours.
“It’s important to take care of these guys especially – manage workloads, that’s going to be our priority going forward. But even more so, finding three more guys who can bowl as fast as and as relentless as these guys,” said Kohli in his post-match interaction on Monday.
He added,” We already are in the process of identifying (three pacers), and then keep them ready – make them travel with the team, make them understand the importance of Test cricket, what areas to bowl, what the mindset should be. Because once you create this kind of culture in the team, you want it to continue.”
Speaking about the future, Kohli said, “The effort is all around. Even on the outside, you need to keep scouting people who can take that legacy forward and not just end in a season. So, we are already in the process of identifying how we can extend this legacy and culture for as long as possible, and set up a system so that it continues for many more years to come.”
“I think the most important thing is to look after these guys because they deserve a good break now. They deserved to be looked after because they are the reason we are sitting here having won in Australia for the first time,” said the skipper.
He also added, “I see this series as a stepping-stone for this team to inspire the next lot of Test cricketers. To be passionate about Test cricket firstly, because if the Indian team respects Test cricket we know the fans are going to come in and watch Test cricket. So, the vision is to promote Test cricket back home, to make kids realize that there is no greater satisfaction than playing Test cricket and winning series like these.”
“In a world where a lot of people want the easy stuff, matches that finish in the evening, I think it’s important to spread that message. As long as the purest format stays alive cricket will be healthy. And to promote that we have to play the kind of cricket we have played here. If we play for boring draws, no results, the game is going nowhere,” he added.
(With inputs from PTI)