Former Indian wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel has termed Mohammed Shami as the key bowler for India in the WTC Final, ahead of Jasprit Bumrah and Ishant Sharma. He also added that India's no.3 Cheteshwar Pujara can turn out to be the leading run-getter in the inaugural WTC final against New Zealand.
The trio of Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma and Mohammed Shami form the backbone of India's pace bowling in Test cricket. However, in the last four years, no Indian pacer has taken more wickets (104) than Shami in the longer format. The Indian quick has averaged 23.92 with the red-ball, strikes every 45.1 deliveries and has emerged as one of the best pacers going around in the world. And he had done a fairly decent job when India last toured England, picking up 16 wickets in five Tests and is likely to be one of the cog-wheels in India's quest to win the World Test Championship title.
Former Indian wicketkeeper-batsman Parthiv Patel also reckons that Shami will be key to India's chances given how well he has done in England and across different conditions.
“I think Mohammad Shami holds the key to the Indian bowling attack. Yes, Bumrah and Ishant Sharma have been bowling and preparing well, but I think Mohammad Shami is key. The way he has been bowling in England and he has done well in all conditions,” Parthiv said in Star Sports show Cricket Connected, reported HT.
As far as India's batting goes, the top-order will be heavily reliant on the shoulders of Cheteshwar Pujara. When India last played a Test in Southampton in 2018, it was Pujara, who had carried his bat through in the first innings and scored 132* out of India's total of 273. India might have lost the Test, but the knock had helped Pujara cement back his place into the Test side and he hasn't looked back from there onwards. Patel further backed Pujara to come good and play a big knock in the epic clash against New Zealand.
“I will back Cheteshwar Pujara to get the highest scorer title in this Test match. If India has to win, you have to keep Pujara for your No.3 – if India loses early wickets. If he goes on to bat for 3-4 hours in this Test match, I think India will be in a very good position. So, I am backing Pujara to be the highest run-scorer in this Test match,” he said.