Bharat Arun India’s bowling coach hailed the fast-bowling department of his team and praised the efforts of the young and “exciting” Khaleel Ahmed.
“We have a very good fast bowling quartet. And also, the bench strength is very exciting,”said Arun, as quoted by the Deccan Chronicle ahead of the fifth and final ODI against the West Indies in Kerala on Thursday.
The Indian pace-bowling unit which is taking part in the ongoing series against the Caribbean side features the likes of Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and the newcomer Khaleel Ahmed, who was termed as a “bright prospect” by Arun.
“Khaleel looks a very exciting prospect. He is sharp and has the skills to do well in international cricket. He is a very exciting prospect,” Arun further added.
It was the left-arm fast bowling of Khaleel which triggered the collapse for the visitors as they were eventually skittled out for 153 and returned with good figures of 3/13 from five overs.
Arun further added that the quality bench-strength helps the team management in rotating the bowlers to manage their workload.
When we started off, the onus was not only on creating a force to reckon with pace bowling unit for the Indian team, also we needed very good bench strength. To sustain fast bowling over a long period of time, you need to rotate these bowlers. The team management had to monitor the workload,” the bowling coach elaborated.
“When we played against South Africa, I think it was the first time in the history of Indian cricket we went into a match without a single spinner. We happened to win that Test match as well. This augurs really well for Indian cricket,” Arun added further.
He also came out in support of Dhoni, who has been under fire for his dismal performances with the bat in recent times. Arun put his weight behind Dhoni calling him an “Indian legend” and added that the hard-hitting wicket-keeper batsman would soon bounce back to form.
“He is one of the legends of Indian cricket. His striking ability is for everyone to see. He has done it many a times before. He is extremely experienced and I’m sure given the opportunities, he will come good,” he said.
Arun also acknowledged the fact that remaining in good shape was more important for his team when asked as to which was more necessary- fitness or clearing the Yo-Yo test.
This fact draws importance in case of Ambati Rayudu, who after a good IPL season earned a national team call-up for the limited overs’ leg for the tour of England but was dropped upon failing the Yo-Yo test.
Fitness, with the kind of schedule that we have, is an important part of our focus. And the mark that we have kept for people to pass is not every tough. And anyone who is there in the team has to pass the fitness test,” Arun said.