Ganguly: Kohli must change India mindset

England’s Ben Stokes and James Anderson celebrate the wicket of India’s Virat Kohli on Saturday

England’s Ben Stokes and James Anderson celebrate the wicket of India’s Virat Kohli on Saturday

"The way (Kohli) played (in the first Test) was high-class stuff". A lot was said on how the Indian would fare in the series after a poor 2014 tour.

The immediate prize of Kohli was not to be, but second-best was Dinesh Karthik - ending a troublesome stand of 34 which had narrowed the margins while England's bowlers exhausted on Friday. And two, whether Kohli would get the mickey off his back this time around.

The Indian bowlers ripped out the heart of the English batting line-up by reducing the hosts to 87-7 before Curran came to the rescue by scoring 63 off 65 deliveries, including nine boundaries and two sixes.

He is still just a year into his tenure, but after such a chastening Ashes winter it said plenty that England held their nerve to go 1-0 up on the fourth morning of this Specsavers series opener. His Test claims were given a significant leg up early this summer when he took ten wickets in the Championship match against Yorkshire - a side that featured Joe Root, Jonny Bairstow and Cheteshwar Pujara (who he removed twice).

Kohli scored a fantastic 149 in the first innings and backed it up by getting a fifty in the 2nd.

"That's all you can ask as a captain ... the guys to do as you ask, and under pressure to stay as calm as we did".

With a first innings total of 287 to defend, veteran pacers Stuart Broad and James Anderson opened the bowling for England.

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The ace spinner of India, Ashwin displayed his phenomenal performance on English soil as well. In both the innings, he was ditched by his own men. And somewhere, along the way, it also made way to the bigger picture.

But obviously, just two Tests in, it's very easy to get carried away but he's a very exciting, promising cricketer. In fact, it wouldn't be surprising to note if Kohli were to brush aside the subject of records completely and focus on the result itself and how the team planned to go from here on. But, after accepting that Malan had "tied his shoes on for his hands" at Edgbaston, he said Joe Root was not as reliable in the slips as was sometimes presumed and that Stokes was reluctant to field there. The whole of India, too, would hope for the same so that Kohli gets the support to make a match of England at Lord's and thereafter.

Speaking of the team's road ahead, Kohli's aggressiveness would be another aspect which would be pored about.

However, after some stupendous ODI performances by Rohit Sharma (including a double century against Sri Lanka), the distinction between ODI and Test performances was blurred by the Team India management. They played 89.4 overs totally.

He is also the number-one ranked ODI batsman, but is ranked 12th in T20Is, 220 points behind number-one ranked Aaron Finch of Australia. "In this team no batsman except Virat plays all the formats".

But few doubt the 43-times capped Stokes s desire to represent England.

Sourav Ganguly says Virat Kohli must urge his fellow India batsmen to change their mindset and play without fear following a defeat to England in the first Test.

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