Virat Kohli prefers ‘home and away’ format in World Test Championship

Only two away Test victories in the West Indies not enough to call India a dominant force in the Championship, says King Kohli.

Captain Virat Kohli (centre) and the Indian players celebrate the dismissal of Al-Amin Hossain.   -  K.R. DEEPAK

India captain Virat Kohli prefers an Ashes-like home and away format against one side in the World Test Championship for even chances. Despite bagging 360 points, he feels it is unfair to call India a dominant force in the tournament as it has won only two away Tests.

India beat Bangladesh by an innings and 46 runs at the Eden Gardens here to clinch the two-match Test series. The pink ball made its debut in this Test under lights.

“More balanced format will be one series home and one away. As I said, we are playing good cricket but we only played two away Tests. When you see the intensity with which Ashes is played, Pakistan is playing in Australia first time in the WTC, it is difficult to judge a team.

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“You can praise us on our performance but to say we are dominating like no other team is subjective. If we had played four series, two home and two away with 300 points, then you could have said that. There should not be tags attached to any team in the Championship. Even if we make the finals, there is only one game, whoever plays well wins the Championship. So it doesn’t matter how many points you have at the end of the day,” said Kohli, accepting Tim Paine’s invitation to play the pink ball Test next year in Australia.

Reacting to Paine’s comment earlier in the day, the Indian captain said, “We are willing to do anything to take up Test cricket in any manner. We will be quite open to it. As I said, you need to plan well. We are playing in home conditions but Bangladesh would have wanted a practice game. Maybe when we play away from home, we can figure what could be more difficult, but a good practice game and enough time for preparation is needed.”

Walking with Ganguly

Kohli also praised BCCI president Sourav Ganguly for his initiative to advertise Test cricket via the pink ball game. “Dada has been open and welcoming of all viewpoints that I discussed with him. His vision is in sync. He is doing things for the betterment of Test cricket firstly, and in return, Indian cricket will be stronger.

“We are walking in the right direction. Under him, we will see a lot more positive changes which will be cricket-specific and priority will be given to Test cricket.”