Home > Features >

Indian fast bowlers need to up the ante

Indian fast bowlers needs to up the ante

Praveen Kumar © Getty Images

A fierce pace battery has always been a chink in the armour for Indian cricket. The late 80s to early 90s was the only period when India had a formidable operating duo of Kapil Dev-Manoj Prabhakar. But after Kapil’s retirement, Prabhakar lost his sheen as a reasonably good swing bowler. Javagal Srinath has arguably been the best produce in both Test and one-day cricket as far as the pace department is concerned. However, the pair of Srinath and the tall  Venkatesh Prasad never really sent shivers down the spine of opening batsmen in the late 90s.

Zaheer Khan spearheads the current Indian fast bowling armoury. He has been the most consistent Indian fast bowler now for a long time. But the lack of proper support from the other end has only added to his burden. The likes of Ajit Agarkar, Irfan Pathan, Munaf Patel, RP Singh and S. Sreesanth have always promised a lot without delivering to the expected level. Ishant Sharma emerged as the most exciting pace prospect during his intimidating spell that troubled Ricky Ponting and eventually got him out during India’s last tour to Australia. But since then, he has been marred by consistency problems. Likewise, Sreesanth has also been a great casualty with respect to consistency. On his day he may be lethal with his outswingers as we recently saw on the second day of the third Test between India and South Africa, but when his morale is low he gets taken off for plenty.

Apart from Zaheer, Ashish Nehra and Praveen Kumar have now been the mainstay of Indian new ball attack for sometime, at least in the one-dayers. Their recent performances in the limited-overs game have won them serious accolades. However, the two also have their share of shortcomings. Praveen, who predominantly thrives on swing, needs to step up his speed. Nehra’s career has been lacklustre because of his injury woes and hence has been in and out of the Indian scheme of things.

India might be the No 1 in Tests and No 2 One-Day International rankings in the world, but in the run-up to the World Cup next month, the fast bowling department needs to up the ante. There is no denying the fact that spin will be the dominant factor considering the conditions in the subcontinent, but India cannot afford to be complacent as far as fast bowling is concerned. The subcontinent pitches will serve as a heaven for the batsmen and the matches will surely be run feasts. In such a scenario, the initial few overs bowled by the seamers will be highly crucial.

India is touted to be a serious contender for this year’s World Cup. And with the home conditions behind them, the battle will become even more interesting provided Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s men go out there with all guns blazing, be it batting, bowling or fielding.

(Shuvait Koul, a Post Graduate Diploma holder in Journalism from Times School of Journalism, New Delhi, is a freelance writer from Delhi)

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 20, 2014 (14:30 IST)   at Kolkata

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 22, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Dubai

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 22, 2014 (19:00 IST)   at Cuttack

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 24, 2014 (03:00 IST)   at Mount Maunganui

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Oct 25, 2014 (09:00 IST)   at Dhaka

More

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 21, 2014  at Mount Maunganui

South Africa won by 6 wkts

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 17, 2014  at Dharamsala

India won by 59 runs

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 14, 2014  at Visakhapatnam

Match cancelled

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 12, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

Australia won by 1 run

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 11, 2014  at Delhi

India won by 48 runs

Photos

Pakistan vs Australia, 1st Test at Dubai

Videos

AB de Villiers praises team after win in 1st ODI

Saeed Ajmal’s action to be assessed after two more weeks of remedial work under Saqlain Mushtaq

Pakistan vs Australia, 1st Test, Day 1 highlights: Younis Khan’s ton, Mitchell Johnson’s riveting spell

Steve O’Keefe and other Test cricketers with apostrophes in their surnames

Mitchell Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Geoff Marsh and other Father-Son trios to have played Test cricket

Pakistan vs Australia 2014: Why did Mohammad Hafeez go for a shocking review?

Australia Australia tour of UAE 2014 Australia vs Pakistan Australia vs Pakistan 2014 India New Zealand New Zealand vs South Africa New Zealand vs South Africa 2014 Pakistan Pakistan vs Australia Pakistan vs Australia 2014 South Africa South Africa tour of New Zealand 2014 South Africa vs New Zealand South Africa vs New Zealand 2014

Live Scorecard: Pakistan vs Australia, 1st Test, Day 2 at Dubai

Teams display confidence ahead of the World Cricket League Division 3

Saeed Ajmal’s action to be assessed after two more weeks of remedial work under Saqlain Mushtaq

Nepal to host world’s first blind women’s cricket series

All India Public Sector Cricket Tournament to be held in Mumbai

Pakistan vs Australia 2014: Mitchell Johnson shows signs of effectiveness on unhelpful surfaces

Joginder Sharma: When an over eclipses a career

South Africa vs New Zealand 2014: Vital for Brendon McCullum to find form quickly

Younis Khan: First Pakistani and 12th overall to score a century against all 9 Test nations

Pakistan vs Australia, 1st Test, Day 1 highlights: Younis Khan’s ton, Mitchell Johnson’s riveting spell

Fan of the Day

Suraj Gowda

Suraj Gowda

642 Posts | 9 Fans

Virat Kohli's Family Meets Anushka Sharma

अभिनेत्री हुमा कुरैशी ओरिफ्लेम की ब्रांड एंबेसडर

Has Bigg Boss 8 made Karishma Tanna the most hated person?

Pranab Mukherjee returns home after visit to Norway, Finland

Revealed: First look of Amitabh Bachchan-Farhan Akhtar’s Do!

7 reasons why having sex during pregnancy is great for your health

Videocon Infinium Graphite with gesture control feature launched, priced at Rs 10,499

Rupee up 19 paise against dollar in early trade

Twitter introduces Audio Cards to listen to music directly from your timeline

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here