BIRMINGHAM: Former England captain Nasser Hussain said India skipper Virat Kohli was phenomenal with the bat in the first Test but questioned his captaincy, saying "he should too take some responsibility" for the 31-run loss.
"Kohli was phenomenal in this game. He deserved to be on the winning side for the way he played with the tail. He singlehandedly brought India back into the Test match. I do think he should take some of the responsibility for the loss, though," Hussain told Sky Sports.
"England were 87-7 with Curran and Adil Rashid at the crease and for some reason Ravichandran Ashwin went out of the game for an hour. India lost control then - he needs to look back on his captaincy and say 'when I've got a bloke who averages 19 against left-handers and a 20-year-old left-hander on strike, why did I take him off?," Hussain asked.
Kohli waged a lone battle by scoring 149 and 51 in the game as the other batsmen let the team down.
Talking about the enthralling battle over four days, Hussain said the game was a great advert for Test cricket.
"The pitch has a lot to do with that - it wasn't a flat belter - and so have the players. The standard of bowling and captaincy (has been great). I think Joe Root has been outstanding in this game.
"A lot of times nowadays we see one side get ahead in Test matches and series and then the other doesn't seem capable of fighting back. This match has switched one way and then the other."
The use of the Dukes ball also added to the excitement, felt Hussain.
"The template for Test cricket has been set and I don't see why the ICC can't just use the Dukes ball around the world. It produces exciting cricket, so why don't the ICC go down that road?"
He was all praise for rookier England all-rounder Sam Curran, who starred with both and ball in only his second Test.
"He has won England this game. India might say Kohli got 200 runs but who turned this game around? A 20-year-old. It's a phenomenal achievement. He changed the course of two innings. He came on with India 50-0 and pitched it up, swung it and got four for nothing and he then went in with England 87-7.
"After his first game you thought he was maybe a bits-and-pieces cricketer and wondered whether he was quick enough, could move it enough and if he was a proper batsman. I always used to say 'pick someone on their character more than what they are showing in county cricket'. He has character in abundance," Hussain said.