Virat Kohli is an excellent captain but true test will be in England, says Farokh Engineer

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Virat Kohli is an excellent captain but true test will be in England, says Farokh Engineer

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SportsCafe Desk


Former Indian cricketer Farokh Engineer has praised Virat Kohli for leading the team brilliantly but also added that the England tour will be the real test for Team India. According to Engineer, in England, the Indian team will face the different conditions which can be challenging for them.

Under Kohli captaincy, Team India have been playing some exceptional cricket in all formats of the game. Recently, the team inflicted a 9-0 whitewash on Sri Lanka winning all three Tests, five ODIs, and one T20I. Engineer, who played 46 Tests for India and county cricket for Lancashire, praised the current squad but also warned them about the challenges that lay ahead.

"The present Indian team are very good indeed," Engineer told AFP in an interview.

"Virat Kohli is an excellent captain, MS Dhoni is looking fitter than ever, Ravichandran Ashwin is one of the great off-spinners, (Ravi) Jadeja, we've got a very good team, Murali Vijay, the opening batsman.

"They have been scoring a lot of runs against Sri Lanka, but the true test will be when they come to England.

"Don't get carried away by the performance against Sri Lanka, against Australia we are doing pretty well, but that's in India again."

The England tour will start next year on July 3 next year with a T20I match. On the tour, India will play three T20I, three ODIs, and five Tests. The last time, both the countries clashed when England visited India for full series in November 2016. They played five Tests, three ODIs and three T20I in which India registered 4-0, 2-1 and 2-1 win respectively.

From 1932 to 2016, India played 117 Tests matches on English soil and won only 25 of them while the English team managed 43 wins. Team India toured England in June 2014 for a five-match Test series, five One Day International matches, and one Twenty20 International. The English team won the Test series 3–1 along with the lone T20I while India managed to win the five-match series by 3-1.

"India's real test comes when they go abroad, especially England. England is the true test for any cricketer and Indian cricketers are no exception," he said.

"You need a real sound technique to play in England where the ball moves about a lot more, both in the air and off the pitch.

"Your technique is really stretched to the limit -- it sorts the men out from the boys."

Engineer was part of the Indian team who won the first ever Test series in England in 1971.

"Yes indeed 1971 in England was a great moment," said Engineer.

"I got runs in both innings (59 and 28 not out) and dismissals as well, but a guy called Abid Ali came in and took all the limelight!

"But it was a great moment, a sweet victory for India because India had never before won a Test match in England.

"I'm glad the people in my era set the platform for the Dhonis and the Kohlis and the (Sachin) Tendulkars to follow." 

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