India not motivated by making history – Kohli

By Sports Desk January 02, 2019

Virat Kohli insists India will not be fuelled by a motivation to make history when they go in search of a Test series win over Australia in Sydney.

The tourists take a 2-1 lead into the fourth and final match, knowing they only need to avoid defeat to become the first India side to win a Test series in Australia.

However, captain Kohli claimed that fact will not be playing on the minds of the top-ranked team.

Asked if the India players had thought about the prospect of achieving something none of their compatriots have managed in years gone by, the skipper said: "If you ask me very honestly, no.

"Because what has gone is not in our control and what is going to come is not something we need to think about.

"We need to stay in the present and focus on the things we can do. We need to figure out what the controllables are and focus on them.

"The reason why we want to win this Test is because we understand, as cricketers, how difficult it is to come here and play.

"It's not only the team you are playing against, it's the whole nation because they get behind the team so well. When you walk into bat, you feel like 40,000 want your wicket, not just the 11 guys in the field.

"We understand how difficult it is and purely to take that challenge on, we want to win here. It's got nothing to do with proving we have done something which hasn't been done in the past. 

"The motivation has never been to change history, it's only been to overcome the challenge that's in front of you."

It remains to be seen if Ravichandran Ashwin [side strain] plays any part after the spinner was ruled out then later added to the squad for a match which gets under way on Thursday.


Opta facts

- India have defeated Australia just once in 11 Test matches at the SCG, having not won at the famous ground since 1978 – when they won by an innings and two runs.

- Australia will be out to avoid three consecutive Test series defeats for the first time since late 1985, after losing series in 2018 to South Africa and Pakistan.

- Australia have lost just once in their last 17 Test matches at the SCG (W13, D3) and are undefeated in their last seven Tests at the venue.

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