Hanuma Vihari Reveals ‘Biggest Challenge’ of Playing in England’s Overcast Conditions
Hanuma Vihari Claims Duke Ball Moves All Day in England's Overcast Conditions (© PTI)

Test specialist Hanuma Vihari shared his experience of playing country cricket before India’s long tour of England starting with the World Test Championship final against New Zealand. In the past couple of tours, the Indian batters struggled a lot against the English pacers in the swinging conditions. After the WTC final, India will play five-match Test series against England.

Vihari, who made his Test debut against England during the 2018 tour, played county cricket this year after missing out on the Indian Premier League contract.

The stylish batsmen talked about the challenge to play in England with the duke balls under overcast conditions.

“Definitely, that’s the challenge here. The overhead conditions play a part as well because when it is sunny, it gets a bit easier to bat, but when it is overcast, the ball moves all day. That was the challenge I faced early on in this season of county cricket — because it was quite cold and the ball was doing a lot off the wicket,” he told ESPNCricinfo.

In his debut innings, Vihari registered a duck as veteran Stuart Broad got the better of him that time. However, the 27-year-old has learnt from his mistakes and said he would try to play the ball as late as possible.

Speaking on how Broad was able to get the better of him, Vihari explained: “I thought it was full enough for me to drive, but again, in England, you have to be really certain with your shot selection. In India, you can get away with a push, or even if it is not there to drive, you can still get away driving on the up. If I were to play that ball a second time, I would try to play as late possible.”

“Having said that, it was just my first innings in county cricket. I learned that I should play much later. In the second match, against Essex, I got 30 and 50. Essex are the defending champions and have a decent bowling attack with Peter Siddle and Simon Harmer. I thought I batted well, but I should have converted it into a bigger score,” he signed off.