Kuldeep Yadav finished the ODI series with 17 wickets and with a strike-rate of 18.0. Yuzvendra Chahal bagged 16 and had a strike-rate of 19.5. Virat Kohli apart, the young wrist-spinners are the reason for India’s continuous upsurge in one-day cricket. Apparently, the idea to introduce wrist-spin was taken after Pakistan gave the Indian finger spinners, R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja, a wallop in the Champions Trophy final last year.
The Indian team head coach, Ravi Shastri, however, said he had a discussion with Virat Kohli about the kind of attack the team wanted even during his first stint, as team director.
“I think even in my last stint, Virat and me have always discussed that we need wickets in the middle-overs. You know we have got to somehow be able to attack and find ways of breaking partnerships and not allowing the game to drift. So that was the idea. And then identifying the right kind of people to do the job.
“Luckily for us, Kuldeep and Chahal have complemented each other beautifully. They bring great variety – it’s great for the viewers, it’s great for the spectators to see that kind of variety, when they come to watch a cricket match. Not just batting or fielding, but some classic spin bowling,” Shastri said after India’s 5-1 ODI series win at Centurion on Friday. About Kohli, the head coach said: “I would simply say he is the best batsman in the world now.”
Shastri was the team director from June 2014 to March 2016 and returned as the head coach in July last year. During his stint as team director, however, MS Dhoni was India’s limited-overs captain.