Pune: Giving credit to his role as a captain for his double hundred, Indian captain Virat Kohli said that responsibility keeps him going. Riding on some stupendous batting (254 not out) from Kohli, Ravindra Jadeja (91) and Ajinkya Rahane (59) and some fantastic bowling from Umesh Yadav, R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja, India won the second Test against South Africa at Pune by an innings and 137 runs.
"As I said a couple of days back, it's getting the responsibility of being captain. If you go out planning a double hundred you won't get it, but if you go out planning to bat for five sessions, the double hundred will come," said Kohli, adding, "Earlier, I would think more from a personal point of view, but thinking of the team, all that pressure doesn't come."
"In your early carrier, sometimes you play to prove people wrong but I'm at the stage of my career where I'm just happy to be where I am. Putting the team in a commanding position is the only thing I strive for. Of course I enjoy scoring runs, but if they come in a winning cause, nothing like it. You have to look forward to facing the new ball in the morning. I really enjoy batting with Jinx (Ajinkya Rahane). When we have a partnership, we invariably take the game forward. We take a lot of pride in contributing when the situation is tough. He keeps giving me regular feedback when things are going wrong, and vice versa as well," said Kohli, who has won 30 out of the 50 Test matches as captain.
"When we started off as a group we were at No.7 (in the Test rankings). The only way was up. We laid down a few things, told everyone to work hard at practice. We are lucky to have the group of players we have in the last three-four years. It's amazing to see that hunger and passion for all the guys to keep improving. Mentioning Saha specially, he was a bit nervous coming into Vizag, but this game he kept beautifully. Ashwin as well stepped up beautifully coming back. Looking at the larger picture of the Test championship, every game has value. So we're not going to take our foot off the gas in the third Test. No one's going to relax at any stage, that's a guarantee," said the skipper.
Meanwhile, Faf du Plessis said: "We know in the subcontinent your first innings is really important. The runs you put on the board gives you a chance. But the way India batted, especially Virat with 250, it takes a lot of mental toughness."
"Two days in the field can wear you down. Especially that second evening, the batsmen were a bit weak in the mindset. From then it's playing catch-up. We were found wanting in this Test match. As a captain you try and think of ways how you can change fields and bowlers, but all the questions we threw at him, he had answers for. He (Kohli) was too good. The hunger stood out, it was great value for us as batters. He wasn't satisfied with 100, 150," said the South African captain.