India vs Australia: 'A natural ball striker and clean hitter,' Former Aus allrounder on Sundar-Thakur counter-attack
- Sundar and Thakur’s knocks were lauded by the entire cricketing fraternity with former Australia all-rounder Tom Moody highly impressed with their rearguard.
India’s Washington Sundar and Shardul Thakur put together one of the most amazing counter-attacking partnerships in recent times. Coming in at the fall of Mayank Agarwal’s wicket, which reduced India to 186/6, Thakur and Sundar batted the entire session and more to add 123 runs for the seventh wicket – India’s third highest in Australia in Tests – with both batsmen peeling off their respective maiden half-centuries.
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Thakur and Sundar’s effort allowed India to breathe as it took the total to 336 and reduced the first-innings deficit to 33 runs when the numbers could have been a lot bigger. Sundar and Thakur’s knocks were lauded by the entire cricketing fraternity with former Australia all-rounder Tom Moody highly impressed with their rearguard.
“We know that Washington Sundar’s got a pedigree at the top of the order even though it’s at a lower level but still he’s got the temperament of a top order player, the mindset of a top order player, a technique moulded around batting at the top of the order,” Moody said of Sundar on ESPNCricinfo.
“Yes, it’s an ominous step up to be applying those skills at a Test match at the Gabba but still he did that and he did that with some level of assurity. He was calm at the crease, he looked very much in control. He was impressive.”
Sundar started his career as an Under-19 batsman who could roll his arms over. In fact, he and Rishabh Pant were the opening batsmen in the 2016 Under-19 World Cup in which India finished runner-up. As for Thakur, the 29-year-old admitted he was no mug with the bat and watching his innings one could figure why. Some of the strokes he played off Mitchell Starc were jaw-dropping and the ability to play his natural game in an intense scenario is what blew away Moody.
“The most important thing about Thakur was that he just played his natural game. He is a natural ball striker and a clean hitter of the ball and he took that game to the Gabba,” the former all-rounder said of Thakur.
“He went out there, he hit a six early in his innings. He hit a four straight down the ground. He looked like he wanted to be himself which was very important because it gave that partnership momentum early.”
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