Shardul Thakur, India
Shardul Thakur (Image: ICC)

Cricketer-turned-commentator Aakash Chopra heaped praise over bowling all-rounder Shardul Thakur.

Chopra was earlier critical about Shardul’s place in India’s playing XI against South Africa in the Test series.

Shardul Thakur bagged seven wickets against South Africa in the second Test

In South Africa’s first innings in the Johannesburg Test, Shardul replaced Mohammed Siraj to complete the final ball of the 17th over as the latter walked off the field with the team physio after suffering some pain.

That was the only ball Shardul bowled until 36 overs and once he started his spell, he just blew away the South African batting order as he claimed seven wickets for 61 runs, breaking the set partnerships of the hosts. Shardul also played a handy cameo of 24-ball 28 with the bat in the second innings as India recorded a lead of 239 runs.

Shardul Thakur
Photo Credit: (AP)

Shardul Thakur is absolutely phenomenal: Aakash Chopra

Shardul Thakur has been the pick of the Indian bowlers in the second Test match. Personally, I was one of those guys who asked questions,” Chopra said on his YouTube channel.

“So, if you are not introduced in 35 overs and you are not able to score runs, which was the case in the first two or three innings, your place in the team is in question because then you will play a fourth fast bowler.

Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra (Image Credit: Twitter)

“But then, he just turned this Test match on its head by that inspiring spell. He took seven wickets, which is a huge achievement. After that, he scored crucial 28 runs with the bat because of which India got a lead of 239. So, in my opinion, Lord Thakur is absolutely phenomenal,” he added.

However, Indian bowlers including Shardul tried their strenuous efforts in order to defend the score but the Proteas led by resolute of their skipper Dean Elgar’s valiant 96* scripted a memorable chase of 240 at the Wanderers.

India will play South Africa in the third Test at the Newlands in Cape Town, the match begins on January 11.

Also Read: Shardul Thakur’s Middle Name Should Be Self Confidence: Former CSK Bowling Consultant Eric Simons