Virat Kohli is not someone who would miss a chance to score a ‘daddy hundred’ on a decent batting track and, on Sunday, he showed how to do it, said Australia wicket-keeper Alex Carey.
Kohli scored 186 in India’s 571 as the fourth Test entered the fifth day and Australia need to bat out two sessions well to eke out a draw.
“No surprise, he (Kohli) got in a decent batting track and went big and showed how to do it really. He’s a class player and he didn’t give us a chance really,” Carey said at the end of the fourth day’s play.
“We knew it was going to be tough bowling to Virat. We were able to contain him as much as we could and try to take wickets around him,” Carey added.
The keeper said that expecting the spectators present to rally behind Kohli is a known thing and he was ready for the noise decibel levels to go up.
“Anytime you come to India and Virat’s next in or batting, you know it’s going to be noisy and he played really well today. But I thought we hung in really well.”
Carey made it amply clear in a roundabout manner that an Australian victory is literally out of question.
“It is going to be a massive challenge obviously,” he said, adding, “We will put a fair bit of focus on that first hour of cricket and then we’ll see how that unfolds.” India not having the services of Shreyas Iyer was a big loss and the visitors were happy to keep the lead down to less than 100 (91).
“I thought we did really well today to, I guess, minimise the lead. Obviously, they don’t have Shreyas (he left the ground for scans and did not return) batting, so we were able to have a change of innings which was nice later in the day.”
Matt Kuhnemann, who bowled 25 overs of off-break during India’s first innings, came out to open as the Australian team manager informed that regular opener Usman Khawaja had sustained an injury on his shin and couldn’t come out to bat.
“A left-handed Queenslander like Uzzy (Khawaja),” Carey joked.
“He put his hand up straight away and did a fantastic job. Probably wasn’t his day for the ball. But, yeah, all the guys would definitely get around him tonight for putting his hand up.
“It’s a tough task going out and facing that new ball against Indian spinners, so he did a fantastic job with Travis (Head) but obviously the night-watchman came into play with 20 minutes to go, so send them out,” he said.