Former Team India skipper Sourav Ganguly has urged current Indian skipper Virat Kohli to be a bit more patient with his bowlers as it won’t be easy to bag wickets on a consistent basis in South Africa. India will be meeting South Africa in a full schedule tour comprising of 3 Tests, 6 ODI’s and 3 T20I’s with the first Test scheduled to begin at the Newlands in Cape Town from 5th January.
Despite their unprecedented run India needs to play out their skin to harbour hopes of winning the series, a feat which they haven’t achieved in the history of the game so far.
“Winning in India and winning away are two different things but I never say winning in India is easy you still have to win cricket matches. But this is where you judge how good you are.
“I don’t think this tour will test Virat Kohli as a batsman but it will test him as captain. But you have to give him a bit of space also. We’ve all been there first times. Kohli is human so he will take a bit of time to adjust. He’s got to be a bit patient it’s not going to happen like in India. Your not going to throw it to Ashwin or whoever plays,” Ganguly was quoted as saying by Boria Majumder.
“Kohli has got to play a different game and hopefully Ravi (Shastri) will help him with the captaincy. Be a bit patient with the spinners, fast bowlers will have to do their job. Kohli has to find a way to pull it back whenever the game gets away from him. And most important is the lengths. Somebody needs to go to his ears and tell him that you need to be absolutely full with the length. Bowlers have to make the batsmen drive through the off-side,” Dada added.
Meanwhile, Ganguly picked Mohhamad Shami, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Ishant Sharma as the spearheads of the Indian bowling attack for the opening Test against South Africa. Ganguly also rated Ravichandran Ashwin as the best spinner in the world at the moment.
“Ashwin is far above the rest, the only one you can compare him with his Nathan Lyon. I don’t think Moeen Ali or Keshave Maharaj is in the same league as Ashwin. He’s just got to be a bit patient and Virat has to be patient with him. Don’t expect Ashwin to get 5 for 50 on Day 1 if India loses the toss. It’s not going to happen there. Virat has to give him a role like Shane Warne did it for Australia.
“Virat has to work with his fast bowlers. I think he may go with six batsmen and four specialist bowlers. He’s got to make the fast bowlers work hard and Ashwin has to bowl tight from the other end. I’d pick Shami, Ishant and Bhuvneshwar as the fast bowlers. I would be very tempted with Bumrah because he’s in terrific form but no warm-up games before the first Test so you don’t know. So you go with the tried and tested and pick Bhuvi, who’s been as good form as Bumrah,” Ganguly said.
Out of the three bilateral series played under Kohli, India have won 9 out of 12 Tests. After a sensational 2017, it is time for the Men in Blue to continue their dominance even in alien conditions.
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