Former Pakistan great Inzamam-ul-Haq has credited Virat Kohli for instilling aggression in Indian cricket as he feels Indian always lacked that and not great players. He also added that the role of Indian head coach Ravi Shastri has been second to none and he has lifted the team quite a lot.
The last few months have seen a lot of questions being raised on Virat Kohli's captaincy. After Rohit Sharma led Mumbai Indians to yet another IPL title and Virat Kohli failed to do so, there were demands of Rohit taking over as India's limited-overs skipper or at least, the T20I captaincy. Similarly, after Ajinkya Rahane put on a show with his leadership in the historic Aussie series win and batting at MCG in Australia, there is a section in India that wants Kohli to hand over the captaincy to Rahane so that it reduces his workload and they also feel the Mumbaikar is a better leader.
However, former Pakistan great Inzamam-ul-Haq feels that Virat Kohli has had a great influence on the Indian team as a skipper. He reckoned that India had 'great players' all the while but they 'lacked' the aggression which Kohli has brought into the team.
"The Indian team has always had great players, especially in batting, but they used to lack a bit of aggression. I feel that since Virat became captain he has an aggressive personality and it can be seen when he is batting or when he is in the field or the way he does his captaincy. So, I think he has brought that aggression factor in the team," Inzamam quoted as saying by ANI, reported TOI.
Ravi Shastri has been criticized a fair bit since he has taken over the reins of the coaching from Anil Kumble. But, this tour, has seen lot of change in the way Shastri is being perceived by public, at large. Inzamam opined that Shastri was a 'big player' during his heydays and his 'experience' has benefited Indian players.
"Another factor about which no one is talking is Ravi Shastri... The experience and game sense that he has have benefited the players... He was a big cricketer and they faced tough situations, but he did not let his team go down and lifted them," he said.
India did the unthinkable when they defeated Australia with a weak side and Inzamam admitted that he had 'never seen' such a 'young team' beat Australia Down Under like this. He also praised Rahul Dravid for handling the young players well and integrating them to the system in an efficient manner.
"Beating Australia at their home is tough and I have never seen in my life a team as young as this to win a series in Australia. I was looking behind the reason what made this possible. I found out that Rishabh Pant and Sundar, they have played 2016 Under 19 World Cup."
"And then Shubman Gill and [Prithvi] Shaw played the 2018 Under-19 World Cup. Also, the likes of Mohammed Siraj, Navdeep Saini, Hanuma Vihari, and (Mayank) Agarwal have played a lot of cricket for India A. So, I have realised that they strengthened their base, through Rahul Dravid. Dravid was called 'The Wall' because he could play in any conditions and was mentally strong. So, what Dravid did was he improved the bowlers' mental toughness."