Gautam Gambhir has stated that Wriddhiman Saha did well against the South Africans in the first Test and has a lot of cricketing intellect about him while keeping to various bowlers. Gambhir has also added that he is happy about both Saha and Ravichandran Ashwin who are making a comeback of sorts.
The Vizag Test, more than anyone else, was a test of character for both Wriddhiman Saha and Ravichandran Ashwin. The duo was out of the favour in the Windies despite having done everything to merit a place, but the time they had to spend on the rehab table saw the world change upside down. Gautam Gambhir, a huge backer of Ashwin, came in support of the duo and stated that it was their fine contribution that helped India win.
"I was pleased for both Wriddhiman Saha and R Ashwin. Both are making a comeback of sorts. Yes, the scoreboard shows 14 byes against Saha, but I thought he was very good with his wicket-keeping to spinners. He is a quiet man but I can tell you he has a lot of cricketing intellect about him," Gambhir wrote in his column for the Times of India.
"On a different note, whoever advised Rohit Sharma to play his natural game in Test matches was my man of the match. It is easy to get Rohit to get into a defensive mode just because it is Test cricket. But I am glad Rohit didn't follow stereotypes and instead brought out the game that he knows best. I have no apprehensions in declaring him as the most dangerous and the best batsman in the world today. Like Virender Sehwag, Rohit too can set up and chase Test wins for India. Just handle him with care and lots of love," Gambhir added.
It was a familiar script for India in the first Test as after winning the toss, the team asserted their dominance by choking South Africa in every way possible. Even though South Africa tried to make a comeback at several points in the game, it was never enough to take the Test away from India, with spinners in the first innings and Mohammed Shami in the second ensured it was a dream that ended as a dream. Gambhir thought it was a throwback to the 90s cricket.
"The first Test in Vizag took me back in time as India went 1-0 up in the three-match Test series against South Africa. The pattern of the game reminded me of the 90s. The script began with India winning the toss, batting first and almost out-batting the visitors from the contest. Post that, the nature of the pitch at Visakhapatnam took over. Out of 20 South African wickets, Indian spinners took 14 and the rest went to some clever reverse swing by Mohammad Shami. It seemed all too familiar.
"In the 1990s too, Indian captains would rely heavily on the toss, pitch and spinners. And luckily for them, all three - toss, under-prepared pitches and spinners - dutifully obliged as India became almost invincible at home. It will be unfair to take anything away from the Indian team and credit everything to the elements. I am only suggesting a pattern that Indian captains have followed over the years," Gambhir added.
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