India need to improve in Test cricket to become No.1: Mohinder Amarnath

While the Indian cricket team led by Virat Kohli is being touted as one of the best cricket teams in the world currently, former India all-rounder Mohinder Amarnath believes otherwise. Amarnath is concerned over India’s struggling performances in Test cricket, especially overseas. With the tours of England and Australia on India’s cricketing schedule for the year, Amarnath alarms India to make some crucial amends.

India’s performance in Test cricket needs to improve

Writing in his column for the Times of India, Mohinder Amarnath, who scored 4,378 Test runs in 69 Test cricket matches, said that although India have cemented their reputation as world beaters in limited-overs cricket, a lot more work needs to be done in their Test cricket performance, if India wanted to retain the No. 1 position in International Test cricket.

“India have done well in the shorter format of the game but Virat and his boys, when they tour England and Australia later in the year, have a lot of work to do in the longer format. The batting has to come good overseas if they are to become a real champion No. 1 team in the world. For now, it is on to a short T20 international tri-series in Sri Lanka, before the razzle-dazzle of the IPL.”

India have a great captain in Virat Kohli

Mohinder Amarnath praised Kohli and the Indian team for making a strong-willed comeback in the third and final Test of the 3-match series against South Africa, which was the very first chapter of India’s tour to the Proteas territory. The former India cricketer was genuinely impressed by the way the ‘Men in Blue’ carried the winning momentum from their 3rd Test match to the successive ODI and T20I series.

“What a wonderful way for India to close out their tour of South Africa. After a not so impressive beginning in the Tests, they ended on a high, not just with a thriller of a T20 match to clinch the series, but also by winning the one-dayers. It seemed like winning that third Test galvanised the boys into bringing their best on to the field thereafter,” Mohinder Amarnath wrote.

“Throughout, they were led brilliantly from the front by their effusive and combative captain, Virat Kohli. He has had a superb series, ending as the overall top scorer in both the Tests and the one-dayers. In the Tests, he showed resolve and technique and held his nerve in conditions which were difficult. The rest of the Indian batsmen struggled, but so did the South Africans, while the pitches that were prepared helped both bowling units to keep runs at bay. But once they arrived at the shorter formats, India showed just why they are a top one-day side.”

Mohinder Amarnath on Indian bowlers

For Amarnath, the factor that stood out the most for India was it’s bowling. The 67-year-old former cricketer was the most impressed by Indian bowlers – Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav – as it was the tireless effort and on-point deliveries by the bowling unit, that made in fairly easy for India to bag the ODI and T20I series.

“India’s bowlers shone right through. As I said in the beginning, I knew the bowlers would do well; it was the batting that had me worried. They came through in the end, again with a great performance from Virat right through. The only slightly worrying aspect is the middle order, and the Indian think tank really needs to settle that area in the near future.”

“To come back to the bowlers, they were outstanding. Jasprit Bumrah was impressive in the Tests, showing us that he is as good a bowler in the longer format of the game as he is in the shorter. And I feel that he will be successful in all conditions around the world because of the line and length he bowls. And of course, the decision to pick Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav, both wrist spinners, for the ODIs proved to be a successful one. The South African batsmen just could not get to grips with the spin, and the pace department, led by Bhuvneshwar, put enough pressure on them to keep India on top.”


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