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Ishant Sharma explains how fast bowlers didn't gain consistency under MS Dhoni's captaincy

Modified 30 Dec 2019, 17:49 IST

MS Dhoni (left) and Ishant Sharma (right)
MS Dhoni (left) and Ishant Sharma (right)

Indian pacer Ishant Sharma explained how fast bowlers couldn't deliver consistency in Tests under MS Dhoni's captaincy as they lacked experience and got rotated a lot back then. Sharma, who has played 96 Tests under the likes of Anil Kumble, Rahul Dravid, MS Dhoni, and Virat Kohli, is the sixth-highest wicket-taker for India in the longest format of the game with 292 wickets. 

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With an experience of more than 12 years, Ishant Sharma has reinvented himself as one of the pivotal players for the pace battery of Indian cricket in Tests. Once known as a spin dependent side, India has emerged into one of the most formidable fast bowling units today. Ishant Sharma picked up eight wickets in two innings that helped Delhi defeat Hyderabad by seven wickets in the ongoing Ranji Trophy. He shed light in the post-match conference regarding how the fast bowling line-up getting constant chopping and change didn't help them gain consistency under the leadership of MS Dhoni.

Look during Dhoni's time, some of us didn't have that much of experience. Also the fast bowlers would be rotated a lot, that's also a reason that consistency as a group couldn't be achieved.

Ishant also depicted how communication has increased now that the pool has reduced to 3-4 fast bowlers. The 31-year-old expressed that there was less understanding when the pool comprised of six to seven bowlers.

If you know that you are a pool of 3-4 fast bowlers (now with Jasprit Bumrah), that increases communication. Earlier, there would be 6 to 7 bowlers, communication wasn't there.

Ishant Sharma, set to become the second Indian pacer after Kapil Dev to play 100 Test matches, said that the bowlers have matured since Virat Kohli took over the captaincy. He expressed how less family-time is a blessing in disguise as it allows bowlers to communicate and understand each other well.

But when Virat took over, we have all by then gained fair amount of experience and that helped. Now when you play more, stay in that dressing room more, spend more time with team compared to family, discussions are free and frank. And then you start enjoying when you go out there in the middle. That's a different feeling.
Virat Kohli with Ishant Sharma in the nets
Virat Kohli with Ishant Sharma in the nets

India's next assignment in the red-ball cricket is a 2-match Test series in New Zealand. Ishant Sharma, with his newly found rhythm, could play a vital role for the visitors based on the pace dominated pitches and seam-friendly weather conditions of New Zealand.

Published 29 Dec 2019, 16:22 IST
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