Graeme Swann asks Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal to emulate Yasir Shah in England
Former England off-spinner Graeme Swann backed the wrist-spin duo of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav to perform better in the upcoming tour of England, besides stating that it worried him as an Englishman to find India skipper Virat Kohli playing county cricket as part of his preparations.
“It makes me a bit nervous as an England fan that Virat’s coming early to play for Surrey,” Swann stated. “To be honest, I’d pay money to watch Virat bat. He’s a beautiful batsman to watch. I think he will (have a good tour). Unless he plays against Jimmy (Anderson) or Broady (Stuart Broad) in county games, I don’t think (it’ll help) because they’re so much better than the county bowlers. I think it’s good that English cricket allowed foreign players to come over and train before (a tour).”
Swann, however, advised the duo of Chahal and Kuldeep to follow Yasir Shah’s style of bowling quick spin to trouble Englishmen. “Wrist spinners can do well in England. Yasir Shah did well for Pakistan last year. So, the English players don’t tend to bowl wrist spin or pick it very well,” Swann said on the sidelines of an ESPNCricinfo event. “The trick is that in England you’ve to get people on the front foot, because the wicket’s slightly slow. So as soon as you’re slightly short, you get murdered around the ground. Yasir bowled quick leg spin and didn’t allow batsmen to go on the back foot. So, if they heed the advice of Shah, they could have a very good time.”
Swann further went on to add that India should have a good tour, lauding the depth of the squad while stating that the English side, which is in under transition, is not quite up to the mark. “India’s batting is a lot better. The last time around, Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad just threw India away and Moeen Ali bowled really well. This time around, they’ve got Broad and Anderson who’re still brilliant, still world class, but the back-up… Moeen Ali is not even in the team against Pakistan. So, there’s a big gap in the spinners department. India’s pace attack is a lot better these days.”
However, Swann still felt that a lot depended on the Indian skipper, who notched up just 134 runs in 10 innings during India’s last tour in 2014. “It all depends how Virat Kohli copes with Jimmy Anderson because Virat had a terrible in England last time around. He’s the best batsman in the world at the moment I think. And if he goes well, he could inspire Indians very well. I’m hoping it’ll be a good series.”
Ashwin shouldn’t bowl leg win
Asked if he could pick just one spinner as an Indian captain, Swann said, “It will be Ravi Ashwin. The experience counts for everything; he has done it. But I will take him aside, and I would say ‘look, stop trying your leg-spin. Bowl off-spin, be patient. If you can do it in India you can do it anywhere.”