Sachin Tendulkar urges Indian pacers to pull a Zaheer Khan in Newlands
The legend has high expectations from Virat Kohli's men as they now have the luxury to play three fast bowlers, apart from the presence of an all-rounder.
Updated - Jan 5, 2018 12:31 am
South Africa is not known for producing spin-friendly tracks and that is why Sachin Tendulkar wants the Indian pacers to pull a Zaheer Khan for team’s premier spinner Ravichandran Ashwin in the opening Test at Newlands in Cape Town from Friday.
He wants the Indian pacers to create “enough rough” on the pitch for Ashwin, something that Zaheer did for Harbhajan Singh in 2010-11 at the same venue in Cape Town. Both left-arm and right-arm pacers can create the marks that will assist the spinner in the later part of the Test when the ball starts to take a spin.
“During the Cape Town Test of 2010-11, Harbhajan got seven wickets in the second innings (7/120 in 38 overs). Zaheer and Lonwabo Tsotsobe being left-armers created enough rough. Ishant and Sreesanth also came round the wicket and the rough helped when Bhajji bowled to right-handers,” Tendulkar was quoted as saying on TOI.
Challenging for Ashwin
The batting maestro wants a repeat of the teamwork from the current pace battery which is being hailed as one of the best in the last few years. Comprising of Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ishant Sharma and the new addition of Jasprit Bumrah and all-rounder Hardik Pandya, the fast bowling unit should provide the help that spinners Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja may need.
“The conditions will be more challenging for Ashwin and the wicket may be a bit damp. But our Indian pacers will need to help Ashwin by creating enough rough for him,” Tendulkar explained.
The legend has high expectations from Virat Kohli’s men as they now have the luxury to play three fast bowlers, apart from the presence of an all-rounder like Hardik Pandya. He also adds that the luxury of a seam bowling all-rounder was one that he and many other captains for that matter, did not have.
“This time, we have the luxury of playing three fast bowlers plus a fourth pace bowling all-rounder (Pandya), who can bowl at 138-140 kmph and also bat effectively at No 7 or 8. Hardik has done it in Sri Lanka. In my 24-year career, I never had the luxury of the fourth fast bowler who is an all-rounder. Of course, we had Kapil Dev and Manoj Prabhakar but they were among the top three pacers,” Tendulkar further stated.