Admitting that Virat Kohli is one of the “best players” in the world, England pacer Ollie Robinson says he will be “playing” with Kohli’s “big ego” in the upcoming 5-Test series in India.
Barring any late injury, Ollie Robinson will be playing Test cricket in India for the first time in his career. He was part of the squad as a reserve player on England’s previous trip in 2021, when they lost 3-1.
But this won’t be his first experience coming up against India and their biggest superstar cricketer, Virat Kohli. Robinson dismissed Kohli thrice in the 2021 Test series in England, and the pair even had a verbal exchange during that series.
Ollie Robinson, who already has an infamous reputation for riling up the opposition—he twice gave Usman Khawaja sendoffs in last year’s Ashes; spoke against Ricky Ponting; and labeled Australia’s tailenders as “three No.”11s”—says he is ready to resume his cricket and verbal battle with Virat Kohli.
“I actually saw the video of me walking out to bat at Lord’s a couple of days ago. I think [Mohammed] Siraj bowled the ball that hit length and hit me in the chest. And in the video, all the Indian players surround me and Kohli is saying… well, I can’t remember what he said,” Robinson told ESPNCricinfo.
“You always want to play against the best players, don’t you? And you always want to get the best players out. Kohli is one of those. He’s got a big ego and I think playing on that, especially in India, where he is going to want to dominate and score runs, playing on the fact we’ve had battles in the past, is exciting.”
I’ve been practising Shami’s dead-straight seam: Ollie Robinson
Winning a Test series in India has been the toughest task in cricket over the past decade. India have won 16 consecutive home Test series and lost only three Test matches in the last 11 years. Not only the spinners, but even the Indian pacers have significantly outperformed the opposition pacers.
With Stuart Broad retired and James Anderson already crossing the age of 41, Ollie Robinson will have the responsibility to lead England’s pace attack.
He reveals he has been watching footage of Mohammed Shami and Ishant Sharma and how they go in Indian conditions.
The 30-year-old seamer added, “I’ve actually been practising Mohammed Shami’s dead-straight seam. He’s one of the best bowlers for India. I was looking at Ishant [Sharma] as well – he played at Sussex for a bit and he’s done really well in India for quite a while. He’s tall, similar to me.”