India vs Australia: We did not take anything for granted, says Virat Kohli

Squaring up to the media in Adelaide on Monday after starting the India vs Australia Test series on a winning note, the Indian captain spoke extensively while his face mirrored relief and joy.

Virat Kohli and Ravichandran Ashwin celebrate India's victory in Adelaide on Monday.   -  AFP

India’s fortunes at Adelaide have finally turned for the better. In 2012, the game was lost by 298 runs; In 2014, defeat’s margin was a mere 48. Cut to the present, Virat Kohli’s men made amends for previous losses and won the first Test here by 31 runs. Squaring up to the media here on Monday, the Indian captain spoke extensively while his face mirrored relief and joy.

Excerpts...

That special feeling

Four years back it was 48 runs on the other side. This one is way better, 31 on our side. We have never taken a lead in a series (before) in Australia. It is a huge boost. It has given us the right momentum. To take the lead first-up, is a good achievement and something we are looking to build on.

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Australia's fightback

We did not take anything for granted. The pitch also got a little slow. We knew they were not going to throw in the towel. Their tail is in the top-three when it comes to lower-order averages. We certainly expected them to fight. We had that in mind.

Consistent bowlers, fine results

It is a positive sign. Especially with the Kookaburra (ball), we have not been able to sustain pressure long enough in the past. To pick 20 wickets with four bowlers, away from home, especially with a ball that does not offer you much is something we can be proud of. We have come out to have fun, play good cricket, and be positive. Day-one went against us but the way (Cheteshwar) Pujara brought us back into the game, we did not let up again for the remaining four days.

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The Pujara-Rahane show

Technically and temperament-wise, they are solid Test players. Pujara was outstanding, he was the difference between the two teams. Ajinkya batted superbly as well, so fearless and positive and that’s his game and that’s his template. He certainly can take away the game from the opposition.

Ashwin effect

He was very economical and bowled in the right areas, just to create enough chances and keep one end tight. We didn’t want to go overboard wanting him to attack too much because that would have opened up scoring options as well. He did his job perfectly and it’s a good start for him.                  

The spectre of no-balls

We were all celebrating but he (Ishant Sharma, who bowled a few no-balls) was angry with himself. He said he cannot afford to bowl a no-ball in the crunch situation when the umpire could have given (the batsman) out. I am sure Ishant is going to be obsessed about not doing it again.