Former Indian cricketer, Chetan Sharma has asserted that Virat Kohli’s performance in the forthcoming Test series against England will swing the series in India’s favour. Sharma has backed the Indian team to do well considering their bowling line-up and the warm weather conditions in England.
The former Indian pace bowler was a part of the team that won the 1986 England tour (2-0) with India winning the first two Tests and the third match ending in a draw. Sharma went on to play 23 Test matches and 65 ODIs bagging 61 and 67 wickets respectively. Sharma felt that the 1986 victory was majorly due to their splendid bowling performance and explained the joy of winning a Test series in England.
“It was a memorable series mainly because the bowlers performed exceedingly well which was unexpected. Winning the series 2-0 in England was very special and most of us still have pleasant memories,” Sharma told The Hindu.
Talking further about the 1986 victory, Sharma even mentioned the pre-series preparation that helped him understand the conditions even better. His 1984 and 1985 minor county stint further assisted him in reading the English batsmen and their style of play.
“We played a couple of side games before the series and that gave us a fair idea of the playing conditions. In fact, I played the minor county season in 1984 and 1985 which helped me understand their gameplay,” he remembered.
Chetan was a deceptive bowler because he could skid and kick the ball up from the same spot without any perceptible change in action. He compared his bowling style with the current Indian bowlers (Mohammad Shami and Umesh Yadav) and said he was somewhat like Shami.
“I had bounce and speed like Shami and Umesh. Shami hits the deck hard and uses his wrist very well. I feel Shami is like me to an extent. If this duo (Shami and Umesh) give in that extra effort, they will be lethal on some pitches,” Sharma claimed.
The 52-year-old backed the Indian team to do well in the Test series against England while adding that Team India has the required bowling attack. On the other hand, he believed that if Virat Kohli bats well throughout the series, India will go on to win the series.
“We have an ideal bowling attack with Ishant, Shami and Umesh being the quicks. The spinners also should not be taken easily, they have the potential. The warm weather is going to be in our favour. I feel if Virat plays well then the series should be in India’s favour,” he said.