Allan Donald impressed by variety in Indian bowling department

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Allan Donald impressed by variety in Indian bowling department

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SportsCafe Desk

01/22/2018

Former South Africa pacer Allan Donald feels that the current Indian bowling unit has the variety needed to pick 20 wickets and win on foreign soil in the near future. Donald further added that he would have liked the opportunity to face 'highly-aggressive' batsman like Virat Kohli in his heydays.

The pressure was on the Indian bowling department to make the most out of the South African tracks after playing in the sub-continent for almost two years. When the time to perform arrived, the bowlers gave it their all and performed well above expectations with Shami claiming 9 wickets, Bumrah got 7 wickets, Ishant picked 5 and Kumar picked 6 (in the one match).

Nicknamed ‘white lightning’, Donald also heaped praise on the Indian bowling department as he marvelled at their ability to test the South African batting line-up. Donald who himself,  picked 1216 wickets in 316 first-class games, was all praise for the Indian bowlers and says he was sure that the unit had the ability to get 20 wickets in a Test match.

“I think the Indian bowlers are very close to their South African counterparts. Yes, in terms of pace, South African bowlers are ahead of India, but the Indians have variety. Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav and Ishant Sharma are all different from one another. Bhuvneshwar can move the ball in both ways, Umesh can hit the deck hard and Shami can get the ball to nip back in. South Africa are playing at home, but Indian bowlers are good. Patience is the key on South African wickets as you can’t be too short or too loose,” Donald said in an interview to CricketNext.

While Bhuvneshwar Kumar has the second-best strike-rate after Lungi Ngidi at 30.0 with 6 wickets in the only game he played, Shami is the second-highest wicket-taker in the series so far behind Vernon Philander with 9 wickets in the two Test matches. Former SA skipper Ab de Villiers also admitted that he was surprised at the Indian bowlers display in the first two matches as they kept him guessing what the next ball would be. Donald, however, singled out Jasprit Bumrah for praise for the latter’s performance in the going Test series between the Proteas and India.

“The guy who is making all the noise is Bumrah, I am impressed with him. He is quick, accurate and does things with the ball. I was surprised Bhuvneshwar, who is skillful, was left out of the eleven for the second Test,” he was quoted saying in an interview to Circle of Cricket.

Donald, who bowled to the likes of Sachin Tendulkar and Brian Lara during his playing days, said if given the chance he would have loved to face current Indian captain Virat Kohli on the pitch.

“Virat is an attacking player while Sachin would take his time. Kohli is aggressive by nature and if you want to get him, you have to attack him. You cannot dismiss Kohli by setting defensive fields or with a defensive mindset. If I would have to bowl to him, I would attack his stumps. That is the only way of getting him out. There are lot of batsman that are extremely talented or hardworking, but I have never seen so much dedication on the ground as from Kohli. He is a great example for young kids on how to keep at it and not give up,” the 51-year-old said.

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