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Happy with the No.1 ranking but main challenge begins now: Kohli

Indian captain virat-kohliddressed the media in Dharamsala after his side completed a 2-1 series win over Australia. He praised his teammates and the support staff following India’s dominant performances in the home season. Excerpts from the press conference: It is a very proud moment. Playing good cricket all season, especially in the home season we dominated all of it. It was very important for a young side to do so and build a team for the future. So that we can give such performances consistently. That we did in this whole season and it was important how we responded to difficult situations. Support staff, management and everyone else was working hard on this aspect, so that in difficult moments and situations, we would be able to counter and come back in those moments. The credit goes to all of them, support staff role is not highlighted much but their contribution is nearly 40 percent, 60 for the team, because they handle the players’ mindset and their skills and working hard with them, giving good feedback to them, so these are important things. So this is a team effort, rather this is a squad effort because it involves everyone. Credit goes to everyone in this squad. It has nothing to do with that. It is a classic case of understanding that this is not the end of anything. No need to get over excited with whatever we have done. We are very happy with no.1 ranking in the world, but our main challenge begins now. If we can conquer the overseas season, that’s when you will see a broader smile on my face when I sit down for the press conference. To understand where we are placed and the kind of cricket we have played, and where we stand as individuals at the end of season, it makes me very happy as a captain. For sure, it is a very important aspect of our side. We have worked hard on the fitness levels of the guys over the past two years and it’s showing. When teams prepare only for your spinners and our fast bowlers come in and bowl those kind of spells, it can really shake the opposition and that’s exactly what these guys have been able to do. Important breakthroughs and main players most of the times, getting us those important breakthroughs after partnerships. Seizing the momentum for the team has been outstanding on part of the fast bowlers. I just wouldn’t say Shami and Umesh but Bhuvi given the opportunities has picked up five-fors. Ishant has been outstanding in West Indies, in Sri Lanka, whenever he has played as well. That’s probably been the one factor that has been the difference in our winning all these series compared to drawing a few or drawing a few games. We have been able to win more games than we have drawn or lost. That’s been probably one of the important factors in that. Ya, because it happened in a flash and we were just one point away from Pakistan at the second spot. That’s why I wasn’t too excited about it because it was a short term thing. But now I can sit down and be proud of what the guys have been able to achieve since then and different aspects have come up – lower-order contributions, spinners have been outstanding throughout, fast bowlers have been brilliant, the batsmen have stepped up on many occasions. Different people. Not just one or two guys, but everyone has contributed throughout the season. If you don’t have a team performance, you can’t be the No. 1 team in the world. As simple as that. If you want to win more Test games, you have to have complete team performances. It’s the main reason why we are sitting here as the No. 1 team in the world and we have quite a fair distance above the other teams. That makes me very proud as a captain and all the guys in the change room are very happy with what they have been able to achieve and ending the season on a high.

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