Nagpur: England batsman Jonathan Trott feels that they were rewarded for sticking to their guns when Indian captain MS Dhoni and Virat Kohli were involved in a rescue act.
"I think they [Dhoni and Kohli] played unbelievably well for five hours. Credit to them. But we stuck to our guns and kept the pressure on them and eventually we got the breakthrough and we pushed on and got four wickets," said Trott referring to the Kohli-Dhoni fifth-wicket partnership of 198 that got the home team back in the match. "It's changed the match massively. It's a credit to the guys for sticking out for five hours and not getting a wicket and then coming back to the game and evening things out," Trott remarked further.
"You're starting the day at four down and if you take a few risks and lose a few more wickets ...You don't need that," he said referring to India's precarious position of 87 for 4 at the start of the day. "They played well but just as equally, we played well. Great day of Test cricket and we're privileged to be a part of it," he added.
According to the England No. 3, his captain Alastair Cook effecting a brilliant run-out of his counterpart Dhoni could turn out to be a series-deciding dismissal.
According to the England No. 3, his captain Alastair Cook effecting a brilliant run-out of his counterpart Dhoni could turn out to be a series-deciding dismissal. "It's still pretty neck and neck but credit to the bowlers and to take the chance and grab it like Alastair did was a game changer or even a series changer. Dhoni runs very quickly between the wickets so that makes Alastair's effort that much better. Going to his right and throwing down the stumps with the momentum taking him the other way. It's one of those things, a catalyst for changing the game. Hopefully, it can be a game changer for us and hopefully it can add to us winning the game."
Trott said there was a lesson for his team's batsmen from the way Dhoni and Kohli batted on Saturday for two and a half sessions. "We saw the way they batted today for two sessions. Their basics were really good. Their gameplan worked out and now it's a case for us to go out and do the same and put a big score on the board."
Trott felt the pitch was not totally flat and it's a question of the batsmen's application like the Indian fifth wicket duo did. "It is a good pitch. We saw at the end of the day with new batsmen coming in, it's quite tricky to get started and we got a few new batters in and got them out. So it's not completely flat."
Trott said that he and his team-mates need to apply themselves while batting like Kohli and Dhoni did on Saturday. "We have to apply ourselves like Dhoni and Kohli did. It's certainly very flat and the ball gets soft quite quickly. The patience of the fielding team is the most important thing. You have to trust yourself and your team-mates and when you get a chance, you have to take it, which happened. We went five hours without a wicket and then got four wickets, which is what happened. So it's great advertisement for the game and tells you how quickly the game changes."
Grabbing the rarest of chances that comes one's way while a long partnership is going on is the key. "You know that two guys are playing really well but in the back of your minds, you know that after all the hours in the nets and all the fielding, you'll just have to back each other and grab the chance when it comes."
Asked about what is the cue that England took from India's batting on Saturday, he replied, "That when we bat, we have to bat well for three sessions and not two-and-a-half! Hopefully, we can do that on the fourth day."