The just-concluded England series underlined the value of Virat Kohli to this Indian team, as a captain and as a batsman. He was head an shoulders above the rest, and even though, the team has plenty of talent in its arsenal, the irresistible form of Kohli and his hunger to score runs every time he walks out to bat makes him India's talisman.
Off-spinner R Ashwin, who is not part of India's limited-overs ambitions, for the time being, said that the Indian team was always at ease whenever Kohli walked out to bat.
'What Virat does has been a conscious effort'
"When Virat walked out to bat every time against England, I just felt that an incredible man was walking out to bat every single time because the ball was doing a lot, there was a lot of seam movement and every time he went and first ball he just defended and the dressing room just felt ease. That doesn't happen just overnight, it's has been a conscious effort," said Ashwin in India's Today Salaam Cricket conclave.
Ashwin, who has been playing with Kohli for the majority of his career, says that he has observed the batsman from very close quarters and has seen him prepare. For Ashwin, it has to with the mental space Kohli finds himself in at the moment.
"He's talking about the mental space he finds himself in, it could be through music, it could be through the way he tunes himself or could be through the way he's sitting in the dressing room and watching the game and I feel he has successfully captured the part of this playing the sport and batting," Ashwin further added.
Speaking about the Test series, the off-spinner believed that it was an opportunity which the Indian team allowed to slip by.
"Like most people have been saying that the scoreline doesn't dictate the way we played. As a cricketer, I would like to say we did play some good cricket. But it was a great opportunity that we couldn't take with both hands," Ashwin added.