India’s one of the finest leading pace bowler Mohammed Shami is back in action and expected to be in the playing squad for the final test of the ongoing Border – Gavaskar trophy to be played in Dharamshala from 25th March. Shami has been an integral part of the bowling unit since the 2015 World Cup but has intermittently been away from the squad due to injuries (mainly knee injury). Shami played his last match in the recent England series on home soil but was away from the dressing room for six consecutive tests.
The Bengali pacer was as fit as a fiddle when he returned to action for Bengal in the Vijay Hazare trophy. Shami was also seen bowling in the nets before the Ranchi test where he impressed the selectors with his fitness and was sent to play the Vijay Hazare final against Tamil Nadu to ensure his fitness. He did not disappoint the selectors and made himself available for the pace unit after he grabbed a stunning 4 wicket haul for 26 runs in his 8.2 overs.
Indian skipper Virat Kohli also hinted at the availability of Shami, in a recent interview with the media. He said “We sent him to play because we saw him bowling 10-12 overs in a go and wanted to give him some match practice. I don’t know about his selection. I haven’t spoken to selectors still . There are all kinds of possibilities.” Adding on the role of pace bowlers, the skipper added “It was important to use them in short bursts and attack the batsman, try to get a wicket or two in the spell if possible, but otherwise, contain runs.” Shami’s recent post on social media adds on to the probability of his selection in the playing 11.
His availability can be a boon for the Indian team as they play the final test in Dharamshala which could offer a hard pitch to assist the pacers. Umesh Yadav has been the leading pace bowler in the series so far with 12 wickets at an average of 25 while Ishant Sharma has not been that effective as he managed a mere 3 wickets in the three tests with an average of 69.66.