Brad Hogg gives five reasons why Shardul Thakur should've been Player of the Match and not Rohit Sharma
- Brad Hogg said the Player of the Match award should have been given to Shardul Thakur instead of Rohit Sharma. He also gave five reasons behind his thoughts.
Former Australia spinner Brad Hogg gave five reasons why Shardul Thakur should have got the Player of the Match award instead of Rohit Sharma in the India-England fourth Test at The Oval. Rohit was named the Player of the Match for his stunning 127-run knock in India’s second innings, which was also his maiden overseas Test hundred. Rohit’s effort played a major part in India giving England a 368-run target, which in the end proved to be too much as India won the match by 157 runs. But Hogg believes, Shardul had a bigger impact on the match both with bat and ball.
In the five reasons, Hogg started with Shardul’s quickfire fifty – the second-fastest by an Indian in Test cricket - in India’s first innings when the track was difficult.
Shardul slammed a 31-ball fifty to swell India’s total to 191 after they were reduced to 127 for 7 at one stage.
Hogg’s second point was about Shardul’s another fifty in India’s second innings. Shardul became the first No.8 batsman to score two half-centuries in a Test match in England and he also put together an important stand with Rishabh Pant.
"57 in the 1st inns when the wicket was toughest. Fifty in the 2nd inns. Pope's wicket preventing a bigger 1st inns lead for England. Breaking the 100 run opening p'ship. Dismissing Root in the 2nd inns. Thakur the Man of the Match easily. 5 big game-changing moments," Hogg tweeted.
The former left-arm wrist spinner’s next three reasons were related to Shardul’s bowling.
The right-arm seamer had sent back Ollie Pope for 87 when he was looking well set for a century kin the first innings. On Day 5, it was Shardul who brought India back in the game by breaking the century opening stand with a jaffer to Rory Burns.
He came back later to remove England captain Joe Root and end their hopes of sneaking in a draw.
In fact, Rohit himself felt Shardul should have got the Player of the Match award.
"I thought Shardul's was a match-winning effort. To be honest, he deserved the Man of the Match as well for the performance he put. A crucial breakthrough for the team when England was 100 without loss, getting that crucial breakthrough was very important and then getting the wicket of Joe Root as well, he came in and got the wicket," Rohit Sharma told bcci.tv.
"How can we forget his batting, to come in and score 50 off just 31 balls in the first innings says a lot, he loves his batting and he has worked hard on it, I have seen him over the years. He wants to prove a point that he can bat and can give us momentum-changing innings as well. Yes, I got the Man of the Match, but I really feel he should have been part of that as well," he added.