Former English cricketer reveals that he is nervous about Virat Kohli ahead of India tour of England

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Graeme Swann : India can capitalize on wrist spinners when facing England

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SportsCafe Desk

05/17/2018

Former English spinner Graeme Swann believes that English batsmen don’t tend to pick wrist spin well and India can use this vulnerability against them. Swann also feels that Virat Kohli’s Surrey stint is a great opportunity for him and the skipper could inspire Indians very well if all goes well.

The Indian cricket team is scheduled to tour England between July and September 2018 to play in five Tests, three One Day Internationals (ODIs) and three Twenty20 Internationals (T20Is). Graeme Swann believes that Indian wrist spinners can do well in England as the English players don’t tend to bowl or pick up wrist spin well.

"Wrist spinners can do well in England. Yasir Shah did well for Pakistan last year. So, the English players don't tend to bowl wrist spin or pick it very well. If they're fit and they're picked and bowled, they could do very well. The trick is that in England you've to get people on the front foot, because the wicket's slightly slow, so as soon as you're slightly short, you get murdered around the ground. Why Yasir did really well for Pakistan is that he bowled quick leg spin..didn't allow batsmen to go on the backfoot,” Swann said.

"So, if they heed the advice of Shah, they could have a very good time," said Swann when asked whether Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav will be successful in England.

Swann said that there is a big gap in the spin department with the absence of Moeen Ali. England had a perfect run earlier against India but this transition phase might shift the odds in India’s favour.

"But India's batting is a lot better. The last time around, Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad just threw India away and Moeen Ali bowled really well. This time around, they've got Broad and Anderson who're still brilliant, still world class, but the back-up.... Moeen Ali is not even in the team against Pakistan. So, there's a big gap in the spinners department," he said.

Graeme Swann feels that Kohli’s Surrey stint will be a good experience and there is good support for foreign players taking part in England’s contest. 

"It's good Virat's been given a chance to go play for Surrey. He'll enjoy Surrey trust me. The wickets at the Oval are unbelievable to bat on. He will have a good tour. I think it's good. I think it's good that English cricket allowed foreign players to come over and train before," said the 39-year-old.

"Unless he plays against Jimmy (James Anderson) or Broady (Stuart Broad) in county games, I don't think it'll help because they're so much better than the county bowlers. Swann said that it all would come down to how Kohli tackles Stuart Broad and Jimmy Anderson.

"The batting line-up are secured at the top of the order. So England are in a transition and are not as strong as it could be. It all depends how Virat Kohli copes with Jimmy Anderson because Virat had a terrible in England last time around. He's the best batsman in the world at the moment And if he goes well, he could inspire Indians very well," he said. "India's pace attack is a lot better these days. I'm hoping it'll be a good series."

To finish, Swann showed his support for England skipper Joe Root to win the battle against Kohli, which would be an interesting challenge.

"I'd back Joe (Root) to win that battle, but I'm a bit nervous about Virat," he said before signing off.

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