There has been a heated debate amongst the Indian cricket experts and fans after an embarrassing defeat at the hands of New Zealand. The debate has encompassed countless topics that span from India’s fragile middle-order to a woeful display from Jasprit Bumrah. However, in the middle of all these topics, another heated moot of discussion has been did India make a blunder by leaving Shardul Thakur earlier than expected?
Shardul Thakur made his Test debut against West Indies in 2018. However, he was off to an abysmal start that saw two years in his career elapsing in a heartbeat. He made a comeback in India’s tour of Australia in the preceding year and came up with a much superior performance that saw him hammering a brilliant half-century and also claiming 7 wickets against the mighty Aussies Down Under.
Shedding light on India’s incompetency to wring out the best from Hardik Pandya, erstwhile national selector, Sarandeep Singh stated that India should start looking around for other options in Washington Sundar, Shardul Thakur and Shivam Dube to plug the void left by Pandya’s injury and mediocrity over the last year.
Sarandeep Singh chose to open up about India’s grief-stricken situation after a shameful defeat against New Zealand in the finals. India’s batting line-up collapsed like a house of cards on the last day to carve an opportunity for the Black Caps to seal the fate of the maiden edition of the World Cup.
After the match, Kohli was heard quoting that India needed a fast-bowling all-rounder where Pandya seemed like a perfect pick. Unfortunately after copping a major back strain, his bowling has become limited and that too he has failed to unlock his true potential after his injury.
This is what Sarandeep Singh had to say about Shardul Thakur
Sarandeep Singh stated to PTI, “You can’t be relying only on Hardik anymore. You don’t know when he will be fit enough to bowl in all formats so someone like Shardul needs to be groomed or even Vijay Shankar or Shivam Dube are there.”
Singh was also not okay with the fact that India chose to keep the same line-up despite conditions changing drastically after a first-day washout. According to him, India should have gone for an additional seamer that could have made life a little easy for the Indian bowling unit.
He also added, “The playing eleven picked two days ago before the game was perfect with two spinners in it. But it should have been changed as the conditions got more conducive to fast bowling (after rain). You picked the two spinners (Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja) because they can bat. The only fast bowler who could bat was Shardul and he was not in the 15. He should have been there in the 15-man squad irrespective of whether he made the eleven or not eventually.”
He was also worried about the fact that excessive pressure on Rohit and Kohli to deliver India out of crunch situations has been extremely tiresome for the two stalwarts to play at their utmost best.
He concluded by saying, “What is clear now is that you can’t play defensive too much if the ball is doing a lot. Whether it is (Cheteshwar) Pujara or (Ajinkya) Rahane or anyone else. You have to bat out of your comfort zone after a certain point to counter the conditions. It is too early to call for an overhaul but a change of approach is very much needed from the batsmen. Even in Australia, the lower order made those crucial runs. We need players to take the pressure off Kohli and Rohit.”
India will be up against the mighty England who will be depleted of a few of their primary resources for a five-match series. This series may also act as the bugle call for a few senior Indians to deliver if they are looking forward to cementing their residence in the Indian Test side.