Vastavam web: Virat Kohli can be “rattled” and Australia should try to get under his skin rather than sitting back and be bullied by the Indian captain, said former skipper Ricky Ponting. India will take on Australia in the four-Test series beginning here Thursday and former Australia batsman Dean Jones has advised against provoking Kohli. The India skipper has mellowed down since the previous tour Down Under but when asked if he will be baiting Australia on the field, Ponting said: “Well, he might. I don’t necessarily believe that he is someone you shouldn’t try to get under his skin. I have seen him rattled.
“The way we go about playing cricket, especially at home, it is about good strong body language. That is the way Australians have always played their best.” Ponting, under whom Australia dominated world cricket, said it would be “rubbish” if the current side doesn’t play with an aggressive mindset. “Yes, Australian teams of the past have always had few words to say but it was always on the back of some good hostile bowling, you can’t do without it. It is rubbish otherwise.
India lost the four-Test series 0-2 four years ago but Kohli amassed 692 runs at an average of 86.25, including four centuries. Had he been the captain, Ponting says he wouldn’t have allowed Kohli to get a good start. “With someone like him who likes to score freely, he has obviously got a big ego, there are other things you can do. Don’t let him score boundaries early on. Try and ball tight consistent stuff,” he said. “He also likes to run the ball down to third man so may be play around with guys behind the wicket in different areas, just get inside his head as to what we are trying to do.