The end of a successful series always brings with it questions about where it stands on the rank of a team or a nation’s greatest wins. To put things in perspective, while it is only natural that Virat Kohli is going to be hounded about the stature of the Test series win in Australia, some balance has to be struck keeping in mind the expectations of a World Cup are far different from a Test series though ambition is common.

Undoubtedly Kohli has returned to India with a feather in his cap, having led his team to conquer down under for the first time in seven decades. Arguably the four Test series of Australia did not see Kohli as quite the same prolific batsman as he was in England, on the positive note, that the likes of Cheteshwar Pujara proved their mettle once more about the value of having a more subtle, ambitious, equally driven batsman in their ranks was a worthy lesson in itself.

India’s bowling over the past three decades or so has become a force to reckon with, although often caught in a situation alien to them or finding their efforts led down by the underperforming though extremely talented batsmen. In many ways, the tour of Australia highlighted India’s learning from the previous tours but also, from the tours undertaken under Kohli himself, particularly the tours of South Africa and England which revealed that having a plan was not enough and that Kohli and the support staff needed to come up with better answers on the go if they were to change history. To Kohli’s credit, India were generally on the mark and instead of being bogged down by the fact that they had a real opportunity against England only to squander it rather tragically by their inability to keep their finger on the pulse as it were, they improvised, hung in strong and were duly rewarded.

Naturally a rare overseas Test series win is bound to draw accolades as it has somewhat bizarre comparisons about a World Cup win. Kohli was part of the Indian team that lifted the ICC Cricket World Cup for only the second time in 2011. While both successes would have been enthralling for Kohli, it would have had their own significance, winning one as a young prodigious player set to take on the mantle vacated by Sachin Tendulkar at the end of that tournament in 2011 and then winning the other as India’s Test captain, a hat Kohli carries him with equal pride.

Perhaps the more challenging and interesting question to ask of Kohli in the forthcoming days is how that tour has shaped his own ambitions for himself and for the team and what is the benchmark India indeed to set for themselves in terms of what they think they can conquer and sustain. Keeping in mind, India did not always and still don’t have the answers, particularly when it comes to filling in some crucial roles such as the openers, it would be more interesting which way the weathervane turns for Kohli given that he has quite a few young players, not unlike him at one point, knocking eagerly at the doors of international cricket, which could make it an interesting and intriguing time for the team that will look to keep its eyes on the summit and also, look to blood in youngsters whom the team thinks can be groomed than persistent with the seasoned players who have not made much of the long end of the rope.

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