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Kohli backing Indian spinners in England

Sat, 23 Jun 2018

New Delhi: India skipper Virat Kohli said yesterday he is backing his wrist spinners to give his team the edge over a rampant ODI England side in their upcoming mammoth tour.

“What’s been the difference for us is the two X-factors we have in the middle overs,” Kohli said, referring to Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav.

“We have actually been able to create flat wickets into wicket-taking wickets with the variety we have in the attack,” he told a pre-departure news conference.

This is what “did the job” in India’s recent 5-1 ODI series triumph in South Africa, Kohli said, with Chahal and Yadav sharing 33 wickets between them.

England are in fine form, however, currently one victory away from a 5-0 ODI whitewash against Australia after smashing some record-breaking batting totals.

The batsmen have been helped by the use of two new balls, and white instead of red, which has massively reduced the danger posed by swing bowling.

This has irked the likes of former England capital Michael Atherton and India legend Sachin Tendulkar, and Kohli agreed it has been “brutal” for the bowlers.

However the India captain, the second-ranked Test batsman in the world and the best in ODIs, didn’t appear worried.

“If the pitch is flat then you have no way out unless you have wrist spinners who do the job in the middle overs,” he said.

“Not every side has that cushion so they find it difficult.”

The Indian side will first play two Twenty20 internationals in Ireland starting on June 27 before moving on to England for the next three months.

There India will play three T20 matches, three one-day internationals and five Tests.

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