- Sep 23, 2023
- Jan 16, 2023
Shardul Thakur was India’s star with the ball in the second One Day International against Zimbabwe at the Harare Sports Club on Saturday, August 20. He played a vital role in restricting the hosts to a score of 161 runs in the first innings.
The Indian pacer was drafted into the side in place of Deepak Chahar. In his first spell, Thakur took the wickets of Innocent Kaia and Zimbabwean skipper Regis Chakabva. Later in the innings, he accounted for the wicket of Luke Jongwe. The wily seamer finished with figures of 3/38 from his seven overs at an economy of 5.43.
The cricket fraternity hailed Thakur for his match-winning performance. However, the bowling-allrounder credited his pace bowling partner Mohammed Siraj for his success against Zimbabwe. Thakur described how he took cues from Siraj’s line and length. It was Siraj who provided the first breakthrough for India by getting rid of Takudzwanashe Kaitano in the ninth over.
In a video shared by the Indian Cricket Board, Siraj and Thakur were seen interacting with each other. During that conversation, Siraj asked Thakur what his game-plan was for the second match since he did not feature in the first ODI, to which the 30-year-old replied, “Before I came in first change, I noticed the line and length you bowled and tried to execute the same. I just tried to figure out the difficulties for batters. I tried to keep things simple, nothing else”.
In response to Siraj’s question about how he is so good at providing breakthroughs every time he comes to bowl, Thakur said, “I am always looking for wickets, and god is also kind that I am picking up wickets. If I take wickets, it will obviously be beneficial for the team.”
The Palghar-born cricketer would now look to carry forward the momentum in the third ODI to deliver another match-defining performance for the Men in Blue. The third and final ODI of the series is scheduled to be played on Monday, August 22 at Harare.