Ahead of the white-ball series against Sri Lanka, Laxman Sivaramakrishnan has admitted that Yuzvendra Chahal needs to have a little more in his bowling armoury, to keep batsmen guessing. The former leg-spinner also hailed Hardik Pandya and stated that he would be key to India’s white-ball success.
With India’s A team in England, preparing for their five-match Test series against the Three Lions, the second-string side is in Sri Lanka, to prove a point before the T20 World Cup in the Middle East. Integral to India’s spin-bowling attack in the past few years, Yuzvendra Chahal would go into the series on the back of immense pressure for his place, considering his form with the white ball.
Since the turn of the year, Chahal has only featured in three T20Is, against England, where he has picked up three wickets before he was dropped for Rahul Chahar. Even in the half-season of the IPL, the RCB leggie picked up just four wickets, bowling well under-par to his talent. Former Indian leg-spinner Laxman Sivaramakrishnan, however, had a few stern words for the Haryana leg-spinner, stating that he needs to have a little more to his bowling armoury.
“Chahal definitely has to have a little more in his armoury. You’ve got to be a big turner of the cricket ball. As a leg-spinner, you should be able to turn the ball on any pitch. Once the turn is big enough, the batsman won’t leave the crease, he will be very tentative to charge down the track because if he doesn’t get to the pitch of the ball, he’s gonna be stumped. Chahal needs to improve his bowling tactics and keep the batsmen guessing,” Sivaramakrishnan told Hindustan Times.
On the other hand, the news of all-rounder Hardik Pandya returning to bowling would have definitely pleased the management, ahead of the series against Sri Lanka. The former leg-spinner stated that it is of utmost importance for the national team for the all-rounder to regain full fitness and gain confidence across the board.
“Hardik Pandya can be an extremely dangerous finisher. It is important for him to regain full fitness and then when he starts to bowl, he will gain more confidence. Hardik can contribute to all three departments of the game. Every time he contributes, he will become a better cricketer both technically and mentally,” he added.
Sivaramakrishnan also added that the all-rounder would be an integral part of the puzzle if India were to succeed in the white-ball format.
“The key for India’s success in white-ball cricket will be the fitness of Hardik Pandya and if he can play to his potential then it will be awesome. He’ll have an integral part to play. The moment he starts bowling after regaining full fitness, I think Hardik will be the key for India. After a long time, we’ve got a seam-bowling all-rounder who balances the side.”
After being selected twice and being ruled out due to fitness, Tamil Nadu’s mystery spinner Varun Chakravarthy has a unique opportunity to showcase his worth in the series against the Island nation. However, the former leg-spinner reckoned that India shouldn’t overexpose him ahead of the World T20, in order for him to be successful.
“Most of the teams don’t have a great idea of what Varun Chakravarthy bowls. Being the mystery bowler that he is and if he has a good tour of Sri Lanka then it will be good. India should not overexpose him and play him as a mystery bowler in the World Cup and you never know, he could be very successful,” he concluded.