Former New Zealand all-rounder Scott Styris has said that Ishant Sharma deserves a lot more respect than he usually gets. The statement came after day two of the ongoing first Test match between India and New Zealand in Wellington.
Having the batting line-up bowled out at 165 runs, there was a lot of pressure on the Indian bowlers stepping onto the field. Ishant delivered the goods for the Men in Blue as he clinched three of the five Kiwi wickets that fell on second day’s play.
It is quite notable that initially, Ishant was not selected in the team and was asked to rest in the country itself following an ankle injury in Ranji Trophy.
However, Ishant showed great determination and made him available right in time clearing all the fitness tests after recovering from the injury.
Scott Styris Heaps Praise On Ishant Sharma
“He perhaps doesn’t get the respect he deserves. Those are phenomenal numbers. He is a terrific performer. His ability to consistently bowl in one area is great. He is right in the face of the batsmen and you can see the rewards are slowly coming,” said Scott Styris on the post-match show on Star Sports.
Agreeing with Styris, former India batsman Sanjay Manjrekar said, that is perhaps the reason why Ishant is rarely dropped from the Test side despite not getting a bag full of wickets.
Losing the toss, the visitors were invited to bat first. India’s batsmen failed miserably and could not even put up a challenging total in the first innings. They could manage only 165 runs as Ajinkya Rahane was the highest-scorer with 46 runs.
Five of India’s batsmen couldn’t even score in double figures. Tim Southee and debutant Kyle Jamieson rattled through India’s batting line up and picked four wickets each.
New Zealand, at stumps on Day 2, scored 216 runs for the loss of five wickets. Three of these wickets were clinched by Ishant. Mohammed Shami took the important wicket of Kane Williamson, who was on the road to score another century.
Ravichandran Ashwin picked the final wicket of the day in the form of Henry Nicholls who was caught in the slips by captain Virat Kohli.
Going into the Day 3, the Kiwis lead India by 51 runs. India will have to clinch the rest of the wickets at the earliest or they might be in deep trouble.