Cricket fans turn on Virat Kohli over 'horrible' farce in fifth Test

Virat Kohli, pictured here after being dismissed in the fifth Test between England and India.
Virat Kohli was dismissed for just 11 in the fifth Test between England and India. Image: Getty

Virat Kohli's horrible run of form with the bat has continued in the rescheduled fifth Test against England at Edgbaston.

James Anderson (3-52) gave England a strong start on his return from an ankle injury that had kept him out of the third Test against New Zealand.

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The veteran seamer drew first blood when he had opener Shubman Gill (17) caught at second slip by Zak Crawley and the same bowler-fielder combination sent back Cheteshwar Pujara for 13.

Matthew Potts removed Hanuma Vihari (20) after the lunch break, and in his very next over claimed the much bigger scalp of Kohli.

In two minds whether to leave or play, the former India captain dragged the ball back onto his stumps to depart for 11.

The horror dismissal sparked crazy scenes as England players celebrated and Kohli was forced to trudge off the field.

At the time of his dismissal it had been 952 days since Kohli scored a century at international level.

The last time he reached triple figures for India was against Bangladesh at home in 2019.

In the 18 Test matches that have followed, Kohli has scored 842 runs in 31 innings at a lowly average of 28.06.

In that period he has reached 50 just six times and seen his career average dip below 50.

Virat Kohli, pictured here being bowled by Matthew Potts in the fifth Test between England and India.
Virat Kohli was bowled by Matthew Potts in the fifth Test between England and India. (Photo by Visionhaus/Getty Images)

Once a mainstay at the top of the world batter rankings, the 33-year-old is now down at No.10 and at risk of falling outside the top 10.

While cricket fans have been quick to turn on the star batter, Kevin Pietersen came to his defence in commentary for Sky Sports.

"The guy is a great player, the guy is a genius," Pietersen said. "Name me a player that hasn’t gone through a rough patch in his career.

"Some of the greatest players have been dropped, they’ve actually just been parked.

"He’s obviously going to get the pressure, but we’ve all been there, it’s the circle of life, you are never good all the way around that circle."

Rishabh Pant turns the tables on England in fifth Test

India were reeling at 5-98 in the second session on Friday before Rishabh Pant combined with Ravindra Jadeja to launch the most spectacular counter-attack, racing to an 89-ball century and his fifth in Test cricket.

Pant smashed a blistering 146 and forged a 222-run stand with Jadeja to drag India back into the contest.

The tourists finished the eventful day on 7-338, scoring at more than five an over in the final two sessions.

Jadeja was unbeaten on 83, with Mohammed Shami yet to open his account.

Pant was particularly brutal on spinner Jack Leach, hitting the left-arm spinner for three sixes - including two in the same over.

Rishabh Pant, pictured here celebrating his century in the fifth Test between India and England.
Rishabh Pant celebrates his century in the fifth Test between India and England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

"In English conditions, especially where you know one bowler is pitching on the same spot, then it is important to disturb him," Pant told reporters.

"As a player I give my 100 percent. Yes, I might play some different shots sometimes, but I try to play my percentage (strokes)."

England assistant coach Paul Collingwood paid tribute to Pant, saying: "He is certainly entertaining, doesn't take a backward step and he puts you under pressure."

But having seen England chase down three tricky targets in their recent 3-0 whitewash of New Zealand, he added: "The guys are confident they can chase down no matter what in the fourth innings."

India are 2-1 up in the series which could not be completed last year due to Covid-19 cases in the India camp ahead of the final match at Old Trafford.

with agencies

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