Rohit Sharma has shown his confidence in the Indian bowling attack, especially pacers, and claimed that the team have the ability to take 20 wickets in South Africa. The Indian limited-overs vice-captain has also stated that the tour is not going to be an easier for the Indian batsmen.
The Test series between South Africa and India is going to start from January 5 and many cricket experts believe that this is the best chance for the Indian team to register their first-ever Test series win on the South African soil. One of the big reasons behind this belief is the current bowling unit including pacers who continued their good performance in the recent past. The pace department includes the likes of Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Bhuveshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, and Jasprit Bumrah which means that the team has a good balance of experience and young players. Rohit, who played skipper’s role in the absence of Virat Kohli during the limited overs series against Sri Lanka, also trusted on the Indian pace department and stated that they will perform as per the expectations in the upcoming tour.
"This is the best pace attack we have. We believe we can take 20 wickets. These 5-6 bowlers have played together for a number of years now, and are one of the reasons why we are No 1. We have played at home but you still have to use the conditions to your advantage. We have lost only one Test this year, the consistency shows our bowlers have been able to take wickets. I don’t know how much of a role the spinners will have, but the fast bowlers need to step up," Rohit told Hindustan Times.
Of late, India didn’t play in the challenging pitches but it seemed that they worked on their ability to play short deliveries which were seen in the series against Australia and New Zealand who visited India before the start of the Sri Lanka series. However, the Indian batsmen seemed uncomfortable while playing on the fast tracks and keeping an eye on the South Africa tour, skipper Virat Kohli demanded the same kind of pitch during the Sri Lanka series. At Eden Garden, curators tried to give that touch, but the Indian batsmen struggled while playing but later they managed to end the game on a draw. In Dharamsala, where the teams played their first ODI of the series, again batsmen failed to construct any decent partnership which helped Sri Lanka win the game by seven wickets.
"South Africa is not going to be easy. It is not just India, any team which has been put on a pacy and bouncy track will struggle to score runs, it is the nature of the game. We have seen that in the Ashes, in that day-night Test at Adelaide everybody struggled except one or two batsmen. There can be such situations where one or two batsmen will bail you out.
"That is the kind of challenge we want, to play on challenging pitches and conditions. So what if you fail as a team to deliver, there is always learning from that. We said before the start of the Sri Lanka Test series that we wanted to play on challenging pitches and Kolkata was a perfect start. We did not do well, but we got to learn so much. It was a good way to look at the South Africa tour," Rohit said.