India skipper Virat Kohli has insisted he would be fit to play the third England vs India Test at Trent Bridge.
The visitors had a mighty scare when their batting mainstay and skipper Kohli did not come to the field when the fourth day’s play began.
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Centurion Chris Woakes and Sam Curran began the proceedings with the bat on day four with the scoreboard reading at 357/6. But even as the entire Indian team came out to field, Kohli was missing while Ravindra Jadeja took his place. Ajinkya Rahane, who is India’s Test vice-captain, took the role of the captain with Kohli missing the action due to a stiff back.
England, nonetheless, declared their innings on 396 for 7 after Hardik Pandya dismissed Curran. Kohli also could not come out to bat at his usual number four position as he had spent 37 minutes off the field when England were batting.
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Ajinkya Rahane is currently in to bat at four for @BCCI with Virat Kohli not allowed to take to the crease until 12:23 having been off the field this morning.
— Lord's | Ticket Ballot now open! (@HomeOfCricket) August 12, 2018
And even when Kohli came out to bat at number five, there were signs of him struggling due to the stiff back. The second ball he faced, he knocked it beside the pitch and took a step forward before grimacing with pain. The 29-year old’s movements were not usual as he somehow managed to bat.
He limped through for his runs, and even had a physio check on him midway through his knock, and needed painkillers to carry on.
But in a much-needed boost for the side, he said he would be fit in time for the third Test.
Asked about the injury during the post-match presentation ceremony, Kohli said: “Five days to go, (I) should be okay. (It’s the) lower back issue coming up again and again, purely because of the workload. Confident I’ll be fine in five days’ time.”
In the press conference, Kohli explained that he struggled to run and will probably have to cut down some intensity on the field in order to not aggravate the injury.
“The back is one thing that can be very tricky when it goes off. It happened during the latter half of the last leg of the South Africa tour when I missed a T20 game because that was very sudden. It happened one day before.
“The good thing is I have five days before the next Test. We are confident with rehabilitation and strengthening, I should be ready for the next game although not (with) the same intensity in the field but I should be good enough to hold a position in the field and be 100% with the bat.
“Again I will have to look at the running bit of things which was difficult today. As of now it is sore. I am not hiding that fact, but that is part of the game. I had to do what I could do to go there and bat again and try my best,” he said.
India, meanwhile, are trailing the five-match series 2-0 after losing the second game by an innings and 159 runs.