There was a period of brief resistance shown by Bangladesh, Mushfiqur Rahim showed his character and steely temperament, but the Indian attack was relentless. They kept pounding in and when the dust finally settled, they steamrolled the visitors by an innings and 130 runs. In many ways, the number 1 side in the world vindicated the rankings and showed exactly why they are an unbeatable force in home conditions.
“At present we are the number 1 team in the world and getting there is difficult, staying there is even more difficult. To stay the number 1 side over a period of three years you need to stay consistently hungry,” bowling coach Bharat Arun told reporters after the match ended.
Lauding the culture of the side, batting coach Vikram Rathour said that the players never play for their individual goals but for the common goal of the side and this is what is being shown out on the field.
“Well, it is the team culture, not about batting or bowling, the players want to be the number 1 side in the world and this is why you can see the results,” Rathour said.
Indian bowling revolution
Bharat Arun has been with this group for a period of time now and has seen this group grow as a unit and become perhaps the most versatile bowling unit across all conditions and once again, he spoke about the culture and hunger in the group to do well at all times.
“Ours is an extremely skilled bowling attack. Now, if you can bring discipline to the skills, the performances will be relentless and consistent,” Arun further added.
In the series against South Africa, there was set pattern to the play. While the bowlers were dominant with the new nut, once the pitch settled down and the ball lost its hardness, the batsmen were able to dig in and look for runs. Indian captain Virat Kohli spoke about this and here in this Test match, there was a changed approach – even with the soft ball, the pacers were creating chances owing to the conditions.
“In this game, the conditions favoured the bowlers, even in the 30th over, the ball was moving. It depends on the conditions on offer and this is where experience comes in handy and our bowlers have experience, especially in Indian conditions, so they kept the ball up and if you notice, most of our wickets were leg before or bowled or caught behind – these happen when you keep the ball pitched up,” the bowling coach said.
On Ishant Sharma
There has been a visible change to Ishant Sharma and the way he attacks the batsmen. There was a time when he would do the holding job and be consistent with the back of a length delivery. While he was disciplined, wickets never quite came. All this has changed in the past two years and for Arun, this has been the most heartening aspect.
“Ishant is probably the most-experienced bowler that we have. He has played over 90 matches and he was always economical, but he felt he had to make the batsmen a lot more and what he is doing now suits his bowling the most,” Arun said.
Shami’s seam-presentation is the best in the world
In this Indian cricket team, fitness is paramount and for all the different notions around yo-yo test, the cricketers still go through this process and according to Arun, Shami’s fitness has played a big part in him being an absolute match-winner.
“See, Shami always had the speed and I think he presents the best seam position in world cricket. One way to maintain his pace is by working on his fitness and he has really worked on it. It is what we call the workload management – there is a perfect balance between his fitness and the bowling he does.”