He was trying really hard, says Virat Kohli defending Dhoni

Virat Kohli defended his mentor and former skipper MS Dhoni by claiming that Dhoni was trying hard to get runs but England executed their plan really well. The skipper came down heavily on the disproportionate Edgbaston ground stating that it helped England batsmen to exploit Indian spinners easily.When Hardik Pandya was dismissed on the fifth ball of the 45th over, India still needed 71 runs in the remaining 31 balls. Kedar Jadhav came to partner his Chennai Super Kings teammate Dhoni at the other end. Dhoni, touted to be one of the greatest finishers in the history of ODIs, was on 16 from 13 balls with the crowd just expecting his onslaught to start.But, the match ended with Jadhav whipping towards mid-wicket for a single off a Chris Woakes delivery, which summed up the partnership perfectly. One six (in the final over), three boundaries, seven dot balls, and 20 singles were the runs during the 31-ball stand between Jadhav and Dhoni as India eventually fell 31 runs short. Quite expectantly. Dhoni came under scathing criticism by legends and pundits for his passive play. However, he got some support in teammate Virat Kohli who defended the veteran finisher by offering an explanation that lauded his efforts and praised the English bowlers.I think MS was trying really hard to get the boundary but it wasn’t coming off. They (England) bowled in good areas and the ball was stopping, hence it was difficult to bat towards the end. We have to sit and assess and improve on things in the next game,” Virat said at the post-match presentation, reported PTI.
The Indian captain, who himself got another start with his World Cup’s fifth consecutive fifty, failed to capitalize getting out at a time when India could have accelerated. And Kohli admitted that given the flat nature of the pitch, his batters could’ve gotten closer, if not crossed the finish line.
“We weren’t clinical with the bat I suppose, because the wicket was flat. We should have accelerated and gotten closer, but they (England) bowled superbly,” Kohli said after India’s frst loss at the World Cup.The captain, however, was not too impressed with the playing venue presented for crucial matchup such as this one. “(The toss) was vital, especially looking at the boundary that was quite short. I think it was 59 metres which coincidentally is the minimum amount required in an international match. Quite bizarre on a flat pitch. It’s crazy that things fall in place like that randomly,” Virat said at the post-match presentation, reported ESPNCricinfo. India went into the match with five frontline bowlers, and they all completed their full quota of 10 overs each. When quizzed about whether, on hindsight, some experimentation would’ve been wise, Kohli said: “If batsmen are able to reverse sweep you for six on a 59 metre boundary there is not much you can do. And one side was 82 metres.