Team India speedster Ishant Sharma has developed himself as one of the spearheads of the Indian pace attack in the longest format of the game. However, when it comes to white ball cricket, the format has evaded him for a long time. During a recent interview, Ishant Sharma stated that he sees the 2019 Indian Premier League as the platform to make a comeback in white ball cricket for India. The head coach of his IPL franchise Delhi Capitals, Ricky Ponting and advisor Sourav Ganguly has backed his intentions of coming good in the IPL.
In recent times, India has talent in abundance and hence the selectors have picked and chosen players for different formats. This very reason sa Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin losing their limited overs spot to Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal. However, Jadeja and Ashwin continue to be India’s premier spinner in Tests. Similarly, Ishant has also been overlooked for the shorter formats.
India has a settled spin department but in the case of pace department, they lack a specialist 4th seamer who might be the backup option in the World Cup. Though Ponting or Sourav Ganguly was not ready to comment whether Ishant could be the 4th pacer for India in the World Cup but they backed the speedster for limited overs cricket.
“I think he’s bowling at his best at the moment,” Ganguly said while speaking about Ishant’s case on Tuesday. “I think he has matured with so much of experience under his belt and I think he’s really working hard in the nets and I know he’ll do well.”
“I don’t believe someone is a T20 bowler or a 50-over bowler or Test bowler. Test bowler is the highest level of bowling that you can achieve. You got to be at a really good level at that and I’m not saying that you don’t have to be good in the limited-overs but Ishant has it in him the ability to adjust and reshape his bowling in this format. You can see it in him that he’s keen to turn it around and you always go for players like that,” he added.
Ishant rose into the limelight as a 19-year-old against Australia in Perth when he bowled the world-class spell to Ricky Ponting. Punter lauded Ishant Sharma for the way he has developed in the last few years. The former Aussie skipper further reflected on how Ishant has developed his death bowling skills.
Ricky Ponting backs Ishant Sharma
“He’s reshaping his bowling. We have watched him closely in the practice game we played a couple of nights ago. He bowled well in the game, stayed on after it. His ability to hit Yorkers is probably better than ever before. The other thing he brings with himself is the experience to our line-up. It’s invaluable in the T20 format,” said the former Australian captain.
He further asserted: “It’s been talked about a long time that T20 cricket is a young man’s game but it’s not that. It’s probably an older person’s game and experienced players game that can think their ways through tough situations in the game. We have a lot of you bowlers in our squad and he can be a mentor to them.”
The Men in Blue have a more or less settled unit for the World Cup. Hence Ishant Sharma needs to have a sensational season for the Delhi Capitals to harbour hopes of making it to the Indian squad for the 2019 World Cup.