New Delhi:The legendary Sachin Tendulkar feels India has headed to the gruelling tour of England with “the most complete fast-bowling attack in many many years”, a “luxury” that was not there during his 24 years in international cricket.
India are starting their nearly three-month tour of United Kingdom with two T20 Internationals in Ireland from June 27 but all eyes will be on the five-Test series starting August 1 in Birmingham.
“This is the most complete fast-bowling attack that India have had in many many years. In my assessment, this attack would go as one of the best,” Tendulkar told PTI during an exclusive interaction.
The maestro, who played an incredible 200 Tests in his illustrious career, said even though India have had some quality seamers but never had the “luxury” of an attack of such variety.
“We have the luxury where we have a swing bowler (Bhuvneshwar Kumar), a tall bowler (Ishant Sharma), a skiddy bowler (Jasprit Bumrah) and a genuine quick bowler (Umesh Yadav). It is a nice combination to have with so much variation on offer,” Tendulkar said.
Tendulkar had played alongside the likes of Kapil Dev and Manoj Prabhakar.
During the major part of his career though, Javagal Srinath and Zaheer Khan spearheaded the pace attacks
So does he rate this attack as more potent than some of those during his playing days, Tendulkar replied: “Yeah, I am taking that into account that (attacks of yesteryears) as well because of a reason. We have got Bhuvi, who can bat and also Hardik with good batting ability.”
However, Tendulkar didn’t want to comment on what kind of combination India should play.
“I think the team management would have to assess which opposition batsman is comfortable against what kind of bowling. There will be a few, who would play the swing bowling well and some will have the technique of dealing with deliveries that move off the pitch. You have to pick the team accordingly,” he said.
The highest scorer in Tests and ODIs paid rich compliments to Bhuvneshwar terming him as the man, who can tilt the balance of power in India’s favour with his all-round abilities.
“The current India team is constantly looking at seamers, who can contribute with the bat big time. I think these two guys (Bhuvneshwar and Hardik) have contributed crucial runs every now and then.
“Hardik has just got into the side but I think Bhuvi contributing brilliantly and that contribution changes the balance of the team in a positive manner,” Tendulkar explained.
“It’s good to have batsmen who can bowl four-five overs but even better if we have bowlers, who can score those crucial runs. The kind of contributions that can help you move forward,” he stated.
Tendulkar has been a part of five Test series in England (1990, 1996, 2002, 2007, 2011) and with his vast knowledge about the English weather and pitches, he is expecting a “pleasant weather” during India’s current tour.
“I think there should be good wickets. It also depends on the kind of summer they have. No one wants to play in wet and cold conditions. I am expecting good bright summer conducive for good cricket,” the legend said.
One of the aspects that will work in India’s favour is the fact that Test series will start only in August and by that time India would have spent a good month in England.
“I think going early will prove to be an advantage. By the time the Test series starts, India would have spent five weeks in England with lot of match practice. It would help the team to get into the groove,” he concluded.
ICC World Cup 2019: Team India to don new jersey for away matches
The hype surrounding the ongoing World Cup in England and Wales is on an escalation with the tournament only a week away. The mega event is scheduled to get underway on May 30 and Team India is deemed as one of the favourites to get their hands on the coveted trophy. All the teams wear special kits for the World Cup and the Indian team also had unveiled their jersey for the tournament, however, there’s an addition to it.
As per the ICC’s World Cup schedule, the teams have home and away matches. The Men in Blue will not actually be completely Blue when they play those away games. The Indian team will play with a new and differently coloured clothing for all the away matches in the tournament. Their first match is against South Africa on June 5 at the Rose Bowl in Southampton.
Their away matches are versus Afghanistan on June 22 at The Rose Bowl in Southampton and versus hosts England on June 30 at the Edgbaston in Birmingham. As many as four teams- England, India, Sri Lanka and Afghanistan- have blue as their preferred colour. However, since England are the hosts, the other teams will have to change their colours when they lock horns with the Eoin Morgan-led Brits.
Different outfits for Team India
India’s jersey is yet to be released and will see the players wear a darker blue in the front, whereas orange will dominate the sleeves as well as the back.
On the other hand, teams like Pakistan, Bangladesh and South Africa have a common colour – green jerseys. As a result, these teams will also need to look for alternatives for a few matches in the tournament. Australia, Windies and New Zealand should not have to change the colours since they already having distinct jerseys.
The opening match of the World Cup will be played between hosts England and South Africa at the Kennington Oval in London. Apart from India, England are also on the expected winner’s list for the 50-overs tournament as they are ICC’s number-one ranked ODI team at the moment.
ICC World Cup 2019: Sachin Tendulkar picks his semi-finalists ahead of WC
Legendary India cricketer Sachin Tendulkar has given his opinion into which four teams he feels will enter the semi-finals of the ICC World Cup 2019 which is scheduled to be played between May 30 and July 14 in England and Wales.
“India, England, Australia should be in the semis. The fourth could be one of New Zealand or Pakistan,” Tendulkar was quoted as saying by ESPN Cricinfo. ((Complete coverage of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019))
Earlier, speaking to Hindustan Times, Tendulkar had said India have a well-balanced squad and they are capable of pulling off something special in UK.
“We have a balanced team which can go out and do something special. The whole team has to chip in, there will be some performers (in different situations, who must say) ‘this is my game; I am batting well or bowling well’. Support is needed from the other end also,” the Master Blaster said.
Tendulkar also heaped praise on wicket-keeper batsman Mahendra Singh Dhoni and said he has a big role to play for Team India.
“Not only in batting, also behind the stumps. He has got the best view; the batters are always looking for the gaps and what areas to target. Standing behind the batsmen, he can see that. He has plenty of suggestions to make and that would come in handy,” Tendulkar said.
“His contribution will be in the form of an experienced keeper observing the game and making suggestions. Also, his experience while batting—how to play those critical moments, how to rotate the strike, when to strike, and when to just build a partnership—will count.”
The first match of the World Cup will be played between England and South Africa on May 30 while India open their campaign against South Africa on June 5.
Before that, the ‘Blue Brigade’ will take on New Zealand and Bangaldesh in two practice matches on Saturday and Tuesday respectively.
India’s 15-member squad: Virat Kohli (C), Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Vijay Shankar, MS Dhoni, Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami.
Shakib tops ICC ODI all-rounders list
Dubai: Senior Bangladesh cricketer Shakib Al Hasan Wednesday jumped to the top of the latest MRF Tyres ICC ODI rankings for all-rounders, which doesn’t feature a single Indian in the top-10 chart.
Shakib, 32, grabbed the top spot just ahead of the ODI World Cup after showcasing fine form during the tri-nation series in Ireland, which Bangladesh famously won to claim their first title in a multi-nation tournament.
In the three matches of the series, Shakib totalled 140 runs, including two unbeaten half-centuries and also picked up two wickets.
Shakib now has 359 points, 20 clear of Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan, the previous holder of the top ranking, who has now slipped to No. 2.
Rashid’s Afghanistan team-mate Mohammad Nabi completes the top three, with 319 points.
Pakistan are the only other team to have two players in the top 10, with Imad Wasim at No. 4 and Mohammad Hafeez claiming the seventh spot.
They are separated by New Zealand’s Mitchell Santner (No.5) and England’s Chris Woakes, who leapfrogged four places to No. 6.
West Indies captain Jason Holder is their top-ranked all-rounder at number eight spot followed by Zimbabwe’s Sikandar Raza and Angelo Mathews of Sri Lanka.England’s Ben Stokes missed out on the top 10 by one spot, finishing eight points behind Mathews.
Kedar Jadhav, who is part of India’s World Cup team and is recovering from a shoulder injury, is the best-placed Indian at joint 12th spot alongside South Africa’s Andile Phehlukwayo and Moeen Ali of England.
Hardik Pandya completes the top 20 list.
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