Seasoned Ishant Sharma, young Simarjeet Singh blow away Hyderabad
An inspired but relaxed Ishant Sharma, who has been picking wickets in bulk at the Test level, showed no signs of frustration at failing to get the batsmen’s edge. After hosts Delhi had folded for 282—skipper Shikhar Dhawan scoring 140 of those runs—Hyderabad batsmen lived a charmed life on Day 2 of their Ranji Trophy tie at the Ferozeshah Kotla.
Egged on by the crowd, Sharma beat Tanmay Agarwal, Chaitanya Reddy and Himalay Agarwal countless times without inducing an edge. Sharma just smiled and shook his head.
It was just a matter of time before the wickets began falling in a heap as the batsmen looked to release the pressure against Simarjeet Singh, the bowler at the other end.
Simarjeet, a wiry fast bowler who has trained under Madan Lal and keeps himself fit playing hockey, a sport his father played at state level, kept the ball in the right areas and moved it just a bit.
Sharma’s repressive lines from the other end had the Hyderabad top-order rattled, and as they tried to pick on Simarjeet, they fell. The right-arm pacer took four of the first six wickets and soon Hyderabad were 43 for six.
It was then that Sharma got among the wickets, demolishing the tail as Hyderabad collapsed for just 69 runs.
Left-arm seamer Pawan Suyal picked the other two wickets.
They were made to follow on and ended the day at 20 for two with Delhi’s fourth seamer Kunwar Bidhuri taking both the second innings wickets.
For most part of the day though, it was a struggle for Hyderabad who seemed to have no idea of how to handle the movement and the cold weather that accompanied it.
Dhawan, who ended his knock at 140 in the morning, had said on Wednesday that even the overnight 269 was enough for this surface.
It proved to be more than enough and Hyderabad will be lucky to survive an innings defeat when they return to the crease on Friday, the third day. Just three of their eleven could manage double figures and none could cross 20 on Thursday.
To add more credit to Delhi’s bowlers, there were just three extras, which included two leg byes in the 29 overs bowled in the first innings.
“Our bowlers bowled well, according to a plan and the wicket also helped us. Our coach told us to bowl accurately, keeping a consistent line. It helped that they took the risk of collecting runs against me instead of Ishant,” said Simarjeet after the match.
The fast bowler said that the presence of Sharma and his advice in the side helped. Sharma, a 96-Test veteran, was to play early in the season and had even practiced with the team ahead of the season in early December but pulled out of the first match and went to the National Cricket Academy instead.
He returned for this third game with Dhawan to boost the beleaguered side that has conceded points in both the matches.
“He (Ishant) asked me to stick to a line and that if I beat (the bat) consistently, the delivery will catch the edge once in a while and I’ll get a wicket. That’s what I did,” added Simarjeet.