In a rather insightful analysis, former Indian spinner Laxman Sivaramakrishnan believes that the current Indian coach Ravi Shastri is using India’s successful tactics from their win in the 1985 World Championship, where team’s main spinners (in this case, Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav) were asked to pick at least 5 opposing wickets.
Revisiting India’s 1985 World Championship tactics
India shocked everyone with their spin-dominated bowling attack where Sivaramakrishnan and Ravi Shastri had the responsibility of picking the wickets during the middle overs and break opposing team’s momentum.
Sunil Gavaskar giving Ravi Shastri, Sivaramakrishnan an advice
Sivaramakrishnan sat with Times of India earlier in the week where he revisited his time at the 1985 World Championship where the then-captain of the India team, Sunil Gavaskar, had taken Sivaramakrishnan and Ravi Shastri out for a lunch and gave them the freedom to concede runs if it meant picking up wickets in the middle overs.
The 1985 World Championship tactics worked well
The tactic definitely paid off as Laxman Sivaramakrishnan ended the tournament as the leading wicket-taker while Ravi Shastri was named “Player of the Series”. It was India’s second major win following their World Cup success in 1983.
Ravi Shastri using same tactics with Team India spinners – Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav
Sivaramakrishnan believes Ravi Shastri is doing the same with Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav leading India’s bowling performances in their successful white-ball tour of South Africa.
In the 6-match ODI series, Kuldeep and Chahal picked 33 out of the possible 60 South African wickets and won the ODI series for their team. South African batsmen could not line up the spin duo and kept on losing wickets at regular intervals.
According to the former Indian spinner, Ravi Shastri will further improve Kuldeep and Chahal and being a former spinner, Shastri knows what it takes to be successful over the longer period of time. Shastri has all the modern day technology and tools available to him to ensure Chahal and Kuldeep have the best possible action and approach to the crease.
Sivaramakrishnan also recalled on the time when he presented Kuldeep with his test cap and said the to left-arm spinner that he wants him to play international cricket for at least 14 years and be the leading spinner for Indian team across all the formats.
As for Chahal, Siva believes that he is ready to play the test cricket for India and could get his opportunity later in the year. With Kuldeep and Chahal emerging on the scene and with Axar Patel, Ravi Ashwin, and Ravi Jadeja on the horizon, Indian spin department is in assured hands.