Former Indian cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar feels that the Indian top order needs to be careful against a different plan from Pakistan speedster Shaheen Afridi when the two teams meet in Colombo on Sunday, September 10.
Manjrekar analyzed the dismissals of star batters Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli and shed light on how they were undone by the seam movement and not the swing that Shaheen is known for. He feels the speedster pulled his length back a bit and that made all the difference.
Speaking to Star Sports ahead of India vs Pakistan, here’s what Sanjay Manjrekar had to say:
“The opening phase had two spells; in the first spell before the rain had come, he was bowling typical Shaheen Afridi kind of deliveries. He was bowling further up the pitch, trying to get the ball to swing inwards, and that length was being played very well by Shubhman Gill and Rohit Sharma.”
He further added:
“And after the rain, someone must have spoken to Shaheen Afridi, and after the break, he brought his length back and in that length, the good length, Rohit Sharma got out, and so did Virat. So it wasn’t the typical Shaheen Afridi kind of delivery that troubled the Indian batters, but the shorter length, meaning the movement from the pitch made them out.”
Sanjay Manjrekar’s positive news for India
While Sanjay Manjrekar underlined Shaheen Afridi’s threat, he also stressed how well the Indian openers dealt with the left-arm pacer during his initial two overs just before the first rain break.
On this, he stated:
“They need to prepare for these kinds of deliveries as well, but for the main swinging delivery of Shaheen Afridi, the good news was that both Rohit Sharma and Shubhman Gill weren’t fazed by that.”
Only time will tell whether the Indian batters will make the successful adjustments against Shaheen’s new threat.