When the schedule for the South African tour was announced, India were scheduled to play a 2 day practice game before the start of the 1st Test in Cape Town to get the team ready for South African conditions.
Virat Kohli and co. though opted out of the practice game just before leaving for South Africa, a move that perplexed some, as India would be short on match practice in South African conditions before the 1st Test.
The Indian skipper had his first press conference in South Africa last night, wherein he spoke about why India opted out of the practice game, talking about how the team management was unsure about the pitch that would be dished out in the game.
Kohli wasn’t quite sure about the quality that would be on offer during the practice game and thus wanted a camp like training program instead of the match.
“You are never sure whether you are getting quality practice games or not. We would rather have practice sessions that are in our control” Kohli said.
“If you look at the wicket we are playing on right now, it’s not even going to be 15 per cent of what we will get in the game,” the Indian skipper added.
“There is no point wasting two days, guys going in, scoring quick fifties and coming out. We would rather have them do two sessions like today, get into the Test match zone and test ourselves,” concluded Virat.
Virat then went onto emphasise on the importance of being in a good head space before the tour.
“It doesn’t matter if you have played three practice games if you are not in the right kind of frame of mind. If you are in a good head space and have had good practice session then that is good enough as well.” Virat Kohli said.
The Indian team indulged in an extensive training session yesterday, having prepared different kinds of wickets to help them get ready for the first test, something that wouldn’t have been possible had they ended up playing that two day practice game.
We can try and prepare the wickets the way you want to. But if you are playing a two-day game there is no chance of changing the wicket at different times of the day,”
“Here we have more freedom to put more water on the wicket, roll it, make it harder come tomorrow’s practice session and you have conditions you want,” Kohli added.