New Delhi: India's Test captain Virat Kohli is unhappy that some of the former international cricketers
have run down the team despite their comprehensive 3-0 win against South Africa in the recently concluded Test series.
Kohli is "hurt" that some of the former players, who have not even played for the country, give their opinion on international cricketers.
With Mohali and Nagpur Test matches on spin-friendly tracks ending inside three days, Kohli is certainly not amused with the kind of response he has got from former players, who have now become media pundits.
"It obviously hurts when people who have played the game themselves make such comments. I am not saying all of them do it. Some of them understand the mindset of the players, having gone through similar situations in their careers. They lend you support, say the right thing and even help you with
certain technicalities. But some people like to focus on the negatives. It feels bad as an Indian cricketer," Kohli told BCCI.TV.
He did pull back any punches while being critical of these former stars without naming anyone.
"Growing up, you have looked up to these people and when you hear such comments from them you lose a bit of respect for them. It would be more respectful of them to come up and speak to a player individually if they feel there is some flaw that needs to be corrected," the skipper was forthright with what he felt about the comments.
While he still respects those who have played for the country, Kohli found it difficult to fathom as to how some former first-class cricketers who never played for the country made adverse remarks.
"And someone who hasn't played for the country has no right in anyway to comment on an international cricketer. I don't think that has any kind of logic. You cannot sit there and say how you would have done something differently when you have not been in that situation yourself and don't have the mindset of a cricketer," Kohli, who won his second successive series as captain after the Sri Lanka triumph, said.
As he has often repeated at media conferences, Kohli again expressed his displeasure at how the team has not been given their due credit despite such a handsome series win.
"It is a pity. The series happened in our country and our own people are looking for weaknesses and areas of criticism, and not speaking enough about the kind of good cricket we played. They have been talking about the pitches and how that has been a factor," Kohli said.
"In this series, four of the top five run-getters were Indians. Top two wicket-takers were Indians. We have had no excuses, we played honest cricket and we got the results in our favour. We are proud of what we have done and how we have played," he added.
"In all the other teams their bowlers are looked after very well. You can see the captains giving them confidence, knowing that this guy is going to do the job for him. As an opposition batsman you feel like you are getting nothing from that bowler.
"It feels nice when our bowlers go out there and dominate; bowling with pace or spinning the ball, and
troubling the opposition batsman. We want to make it as difficult for other team's batsmen to score and survive as it is for us," he said.
Kohli also highlighted Ishant Sharma and R Ashwin for their efforts in the series.
"I am very pleased to see Ishant taking up the role of the leader of the pace attack, and he is actually feeling like one. With the kind of experience he has under his belt, it is important for him to guide the other guys. It is important that others grow in his presence. And he is bowling beautifully.
"The way he bowled in Sri Lanka, I have never seen him bowl like that since his first tour of Australia (in 2008). He has got his confidence back. Even in this series, he knew he did his job for the team by putting in those maidens and creating pressure.
"Ashwin has always been a champion bowler. I keep picking his brain on the field. In difficult situations, I keep asking him what should be done. He gives me proper insight. As a captain, you need a few people like that around. You cannot possibly think of everything at all times. Ashwin, Ajinkya, Ishant, Rohit -- I keep speaking to these guys because they think about the game and analyse what's going on in the field," he said.