Former India cricketer, Jatin Paranjpe opines Shardul Thakur has characteristics which will make him a good pick for the third Test against Australia in the ongoing Border-Gavaskar series. Thakur, along with T Natarajan has been added to India’s squad for the last two Test in place of the injured Mohammed Shami and Umesh Yadav.
Shami was injured in the first Test in Adelaide and Umesh in the second Test in Melbourne. Thakur, who has played 1 Test for India, is facing competition from Navdeep Saini and Natarajan for Umesh’s spot for the third Test in Sydney.
Thakur made his debut in the home series against West Indies in 2018, but couldn’t bowl more than 10 balls and left the field with a groin injury. Saini has had injury issues in the recent past and didn’t look in his rhythm during the IPL and the ODI series against Australia, while Natarajan is more of a limited-overs bowler hitherto – making Thakur the front-runner for the third seamer’s spot in Sydney.
Thakur used to travel for 6 hours daily to play cricket: Jatin Paranjpe
Paranjpe pointed out that Thakur has gone through a grind in his early life the pacer used to travel for hours to go to practice and to play matches. Paranjpe, who was a member of the selection panel, believes that Takur’s struggling times have made him strong mentally which would help him absorb the pressure if he plays in the Test against Australia.
The 48-year-old reckons that Thakur’s typical Mumbaikar attitude of never giving up concurs with the dictum of the team under the Kohli-Shastri era. The CSK bowler also adds some batting depth to the team – he is a better batsman than any pacer in the squad.
As quoted by Sportskeeda, Jatin Paranjpe said, “In Mumbai, he has played his entire cricket after travelling all the way from Palghar. These guys have undergone a tough rigour, travelling for six hours on a daily basis. This ‘slog’ makes these guys mentally very tough. This is where they get their tenacity. After going through that kind of a grind just to get to play cricket, they just don’t want to give up.”
“When you play international cricket, and particularly when you play Australia – tenacity and fighting spirit, the two qualities he possesses in abundance – trump over talent. He will keep coming at you with the ball and with the bat. He fits into the culture of this team, built by captain Virat Kohli and coach Ravi Shastri. Like this team, he doesn’t give up till the end,” added Paranjpe.