Former England skipper Michael Vaughan has questioned Virat Kohli’s tactics to open Day 2 proceedings with Ishant Sharma, who looked the least effective bowler in the first innings.
Ishant was short in his length and bowled wide outside the off-stump. The veteran fast bowler has all the experience under his belt but didn’t look at his best.
Ishant didn’t have any rhythm in his bowling and couldn’t hit the right areas. Ishant’s strength is to get the ball into the right-handers and away from the left-handers but he wasn’t able to do that. Furthermore, the lanky fast bowler bowled around 125-130 Kmph and didn’t trouble the opposition batsmen.
Thus, it would have made sense for Kohli to have started Day 2 with Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami but the former was given the ball later. In fact, Kohli had also started the innings with Ishant Sharma on the opening day after the team was bundled out for a mere score of 78 runs.
Ishant conceded 92 runs in 22 overs he bowled and gave away his runs at a high economy rate of 4.20. In fact, the experienced fast bowler failed to bowl a single maiden over and bowled four no-balls and one wide as he couldn’t get going.
“You are looking at the start of the day’s play. Ishant Sharma was by far the worst Indian seamer yesterday. You start with him the next day, in an hour that you have to win, you (should) surely go to your best bowler, Jasprit Bumrah. Shami didn’t take the new ball yesterday for whatever reason. And Virat will have to answer it and he will have to answer it quite heavily,” Michael Vaughan said on the Test Match Special podcast.
Vaughan added that the Indian team needs to adapt to the English conditions to savour success.
“The best teams in the world adapt. This Indian team are a good team, but they can’t be up there with the great teams unless they are actually willing to accept that they need to arrive and do things differently.”
Vaughan observed that it was great to see when the whole of the Indian squad and the team management came to the ground floor to greet Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami but he was disappointed that the visitors followed Lord’s win with a mundane performance at Leeds.
“I think they should be careful that they don’t do things for show. For me, I saw at Lord’s, I thought it was brilliant that all their team came into the Long Room to greet that partnership (between Bumrah and Shami).
I like that, in a team, I want to see that. But you can’t do things like that and arrive the week after and put in a performance like this. That doesn’t happen in real high-class cricket. That looks to me now like all histrionics and antiques, it just looks like it was for show. A team that is really together and fight in with that crunch of the situation, they don’t play like what we have seen India play in the last two days,” Michael Vaughan stated.