With the way the second test match has gone, it has again raised questions over the Indian pace department. They either perform too well or end up being wayward .To India’s favour, it is right that the pitch flattened a bit but bowling on flat pitches is an art and they must learn it. It is them who needs it the most as they play most of their matches on flat pitches and every time batsman cannot be relied on to compensate for them. In Test matches batsman can set up the game by scoring big,but it has to be the bowlers who must pick 20 wickets or else its all in vain.
Going through India’s recent pace attack in Tests, they lack someone with raw pace. Ishant Sharma has done well in patches and with Zaheer Khan on the wrong side of 30’s, it demands a lot from inexperienced Shami Ahmed. With Ishant being a rhythm bowler, it depends a lot on how he starts. He can either be too good or may go for plenty.He might not be very effective in ODIs due to inability to bowl yorkers consistently, but has performed reasonably well to claim for a spot in the 11. On the other hand, Zaheer and Shami relies on swinging both new and the old ball.
It’s the mid overs which has been the problem with spinners not chipping in with wickets on a regular basis.
Also, Shami and Zaheer has not got reverse swing on a consistent basis from the old ball. With a bunch of bowlers emerging in the domestic scene , it’s the right time to give them a chance . Under Zaheer, they can learn some of the tricks of the trade as he might retire any time with the fitness he has shown in the past. A rotation will do a good to the bowlers and will minimise the injuries.
Selectors need to give fast bowlers a long run at the international level, if they can give the same to the talented batsman.
India desperately need someone like Varun Aaron or Umesh Yadav to be in the 11, just because the extra pace they bring with them. When the bowl is doing a bit,fast bowlers have limited the opposition to a low score as evident from 2nd test match between India and New Zealand or recently concluded first test match betweeen India and South Africa, where the pitch flattened on both occasions in the second innings.Bowlers with extra pace can be handy to upset the rhythm of the batsman and make him do something silly.
So, with Zaheer on the verge of retirement, India should make full use of his experience and bring in other bowlers also to learn from him. Shami is definetely a bright spot for India but he is too young to lead this attack.