On a pitch which was termed ‘unresponsive’ and ‘flat’ with not much bounce, Indian pacer, Ishant Sharma, troubled the English Batsmen with his immaculate line and length; creating plenty of question marks as the second session got under-way.
After the post lunch session on Day 3, Ishant first removed the well settled pair of Sam Robson and Gary Ballance, following it up with the wicket of dangerous looking Ian Bell.
Not just that, he showed immense variation, bring the ball both in and as well as taking it away by pitching it up on the off stump. With this performance, he has gone a long way in answering all those who were questioning his place in the side.
From the thrashing in the Mohali ODI at the hands of James Faulkner, he has come a long way in slowly emerging as a pivotal component of India’s bowling contingent. Be it Johannesburg, the tests versus New Zealand or here in Nottingham, he has looked the most threatening bowler among the pack.
However, in India, his wrist seems to fall, the seam points towards fine leg and is often wobbly. He struggles for bounce, movement off the pitch seems minimal, and it all contributes to the opposition getting on top of him.
Enter South Africa, England, West Indies, Australia & New Zealand, he’s a different bowler altogether. It brings the shades of the bowler who troubled one of the world’s best no.3 batsmen (read Ponting) in Perth.
With both Shami and Bhuvneshwar relatively new and inexperienced, this series is the perfect opportunity for Ishant to lead this bowling attack and spearhead the Indian pace attack.