After losing the ODI series 2-1, captain Virat Kohli said that Team India played with heart and desire against Australia. The Men in Blue registered their first win of the tour on Wednesday by beating Australia by 13 runs in the third ODI. Captain Kohli heaped huge praises on his players after a courageous display with bot and bat in Canberra.

The Indian skipper talked about the inclusions of Shubman Gill and debutant T Natarajan as he claimed that they brought some freshness in the team.

“It’s particularly pleasing that we were under the pump for the first half of our innings, and second half of Australia’s, and we fought back both times. One guy making his debut, Shubman coming back, that brought us some freshness,” Kohli said in the post-match presentation.

The Indian bowlers also put up a decent show in Canberra after dismissal performances in first two ODIs at Sydney Cricket Ground. Kohli said the pitch in third ODI was better for bowlers and boosted their confidence while defending the 303-run target.

“I think the pitch was much better in terms of helping the bowlers, so obviously the confidence levels go up. We were able to put Australia under pressure because of that fact as well. Playing international cricket for 13-14 years, you should be able to come back like we did,” Kohli said.

Team India’s batting-unit once again displayed a solid performance with the bat as skipper Kohli himself slammed 63 runs, but it was the crucial 150-run stand between Hardik Pandya and Ravindra Jadeja, which take the visitors to a formidable total. Pandya scored unbeaten 92 runs off 76 balls, while Jadeja hit 66 runs off 50 balls.

“I would have liked to go on for a bit longer, but we had a great partnership between Hardik and Jadeja. It was exactly what the team needed to get that boost, even though we’ve lost the series. We played with heart and desire, and that’s what you need to do in Australia,” Kohli concluded.

The visitors will next lock horns against Australia in a three-match T20I series starting from December 4.