England Cricketer Ravi Bopara has criticised Indian Captain Virat Kohli's tactics on yet another disappointing day for the visitors during the ongoing Lord's Test. Bopara has specifically talked about the move to not bring on India's premier Test spinner Ravichandran Ashwin early into the play on Day 3.
Despite the drastic change in pitch and overhead conditions from Day 2 in London and Ashwin's excellent record with the new ball and especially against left-handers like Alastair Cook, Virat chose not to bowl him and only brought him on after England were 50 runs past India's poor first innings score of 107 in the 39th over.
Bopara talking about the issue on ESPNcricinfo said, “Bringing Ashwin that late surprised all of us. I think in Virat’s mind, he is little bit thinking that the pitch is playing like yesterday. It’s not playing like yesterday. The weather conditions are completely different. That is the biggest factor (at) Lord’s yesterday especially with the gloomy conditions, the floodlights one, that made it so difficult. It’ s a little bit sunny today. Might be cold but I think Virat’s got in his mind that seamers are the most dangerous. I think Ashwin coming in that late hurt India a little bit,”
“I think he could’ve controlled the run rate as well just as England were pushing ahead. So from one end, they got to keep it tight and attack from the other end. They got to do something and be smart the way they go back and not giving England too big a lead,”
The other cricket expert on the panel, VVS Laxman said that even though there has been some selection and tactical errors, Virat Kohli should focus on the job on hands.
VVS reiterating the need for India to rotate their bowlers wisely, said, “If that means that from one end, we have to have a spinner who can control the game and from other end, you have the fast bowlers, whether it is Ishant, whether it is Shami or maybe even Hardik Pandya, but bowl in short bursts – maybe three or four overs – where they can come and look to take wickets,”