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Monday, Nov 18, 2019

Virat Kohli decodes impact of Shami and Umesh in India, outlines major change

Among all Indian fast bowlers who’ve taken at least 10 wickets in home Tests, Mohammed Shami and Umesh Yadav have the best strike rates.

cricket Updated: Oct 23, 2019 08:57 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli gestures towards teammate Mohammed Shami
Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli gestures towards teammate Mohammed Shami (AP)
         

After the crushing defeat in the Test series, South African captain Faf du Plessis admitted that India’s fast-bowlers were relentless and they put the visitors under a lot of pressure. Also, there is this fact which states that among all Indian fast bowlers who’ve taken at least 10 wickets in home Tests, Mohammed Shami and Umesh Yadav have the best strike rates.

For Indian captain Virat Kohli, this is his biggest asset, and he loves to speak about the potency of his attack. “If you look at these two guys, their strike rate is probably the best in Indian conditions in history, which tells you that these guys hit the stumps and the pads more than anyone else before them.” Kohli said. “It’s again a great sign of the kind of intent that the bowlers are running in with now. The fitness levels obviously have gone up, so your brain is obviously supporting what you want to do, because your body also will support that workload.

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“You bowl three good overs and if you’re tired, then the other two [overs in the spell] are not as effective, and you lose the opportunity to take a wicket after creating pressure. But these guys are relentless, they’re running in to just take wickets, bowl in areas that make batsmen uncomfortable,” the captain added.

When teams come to India, their focus is on spinners and how to negate their threat, but in this series, the Indian fast bowlers proved to be the difference and this is what the Indian captain believes will make his side multi-dimensional.

“The focus was on spin [in the lead-up to the series], but the pacers have done the damage. We’ve become a multi-dimensional team now, and it’s not [just] one thing that you need to counter when you’re playing against us.”

He also spoke about the attitude of the fast bowlers and how they wanted to hit the right areas and make something happen even if the pitch had no assistance to offer.

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“As fast bowlers, if you feel like there’s nothing in the pitch but we can make something happen, you will make it happen, because that’s the kind of effort you want to bowl with. If you look at a pitch and you just give up, then you’re getting nothing out of it, so it’s the mindset. They want to make things happen, they don’t want easy cricket, they don’t want easy situations, they want to have things which are challenging, and then they try to come on top, because it’s going to do the team a lot of good if you do well in difficult scenarios.”