Ishant Sharma had an altercation with Dhammika Prasad in the third and final Test © Getty Images
Ishant Sharma had an altercation with Dhammika Prasad in the third and final Test © Getty Images

India‘s star performer from the final Test against Sri Lanka, Ishant Sharma, has been banned for a Test match, got a supporter in the form of his coach Shravan Kumar. According to Kumar, Ishant’s aggression was more due to the team atmosphere that was generated by team director Ravi Shastri and captain Virat Kohli. Kohli and Shastri have been speaking of having an aggressive team culture. Ishant had an altercation with Sri Lanka fast bowler Dhammika Prasad in the final Test, when the latter bowled three bouncers in an over which is illegal. This was the third time in the three-match series that he crossed the line. Full Cricket Scorecard: India vs Sri Lanka, 3rd Test at Colombo (SSC)

Kumar was quoted by mid-day saying, “Ishant crossed the limit this time. Sledging is a part of the game, but by making gestures he invited more trouble from the match referee. I think he got carried away with the dressing room atmosphere, especially when you have a captain and Team Director who talk so much about aggression. He was never so aggressive as a child. I will definitely ask him to control his aggression. By now, he must have realised that he is the one who suffered in this incident. The team management hasn’t come forward to request the match referee to remove his ban. Ishant needs to be counselled and learn the art of sledging, which is a very subtle act.” Virat Kohli: Ishant Sharma’s altercation with Dhammika Prasad happened at the right time

Kumar said that the secret behind Sharma’s success was his dedication and hard work, “He was determined to complete 200 Test wickets on this tour. I am glad he achieved it. International cricketers prefer spending more time in the gym, but Ishant hit the ground daily, bowling for almost two to three hours in the nets. He worked on his fitness and rhythm. He also shortened his run-up which helped him do well. The best thing was he bowled consistently well in the three Tests.”