India news November 13, 2011

Don't think I need ankle surgery - Ishant

ESPNcricinfo staff

Ishant Sharma, the India fast bowler, has said that his ankle has healed and that he, in all probability, no longer needs surgery to fix it. Ishant, who played the first Test against the West Indies in Delhi, had sustained a ligament injury to his left ankle during the third Test against England at Edgbaston earlier this year. He was forced to miss the limited-overs part of the England tour and the subsequent one-day series against the same opponents in India, but recovered in time to play against West Indies.

"There is no risk about it [ankle]," Ishant told reporters after India's practice session on Sunday. I've been working a lot on my ankle and everything. I am fit now and I am ready to play in Australia, and I don't think even after the Australia tour I will need surgery."

Zaheer Khan, India's leading fast bowler, has been out of action since the first Test in England back in June. With offspinner Harbhajan Singh also missing, having been dropped for the first two Tests against West Indies, Ishant has been catapulted into the role of India's senior strike-bower, a role he said he was happy to fill.

"Obviously it's a great feeling ... It's an honour to lead the Indian attack. Being the senior-most bowler in the team, it's really great. It's difficult to express this kind of feeling actually. You are obviously going to miss a bowler like Zak [Zaheer]. But injuries are part and parcel of the game. You have to play the role of the senior when someone is injured. Whoever you have in the team, you need to go ahead and give your best shot."

Given India's recent spate of injuries, the selectors have taken the opportunity to blood a few new players during the recently completed one-day series against England and the first Test against West Indies. Among the new faces in the ODIs were Umesh Yadav and Varun Aaron, while Yadav played in the Test win over West Indies in Delhi. Both bowlers impressed with their pace and Ishant said it was a "great feeling" to be part of an attack that can bowl quick.

"Earlier, everyone was saying that India can't produce fast bowlers. Now all the three fast bowlers are consistently clocking 90 miles per hour. Obviously it's a great feeling for any fast bowler in the team."

When he was asked why India's bowlers failed to get reverse-swing at the Feroz Shah Kotla, Ishant it was difficult to do so on the first day when the track was fresh. "The only thing you can do is to be consistent and bowl in the right areas. As the day progresses, you get reverse-swing. Reverse-swing happens only on second or third day of a Test match.

"The Australia tour is after this series. We will get two practice matches there to get accustomed to the conditions. In India, the wickets are like this only. We can't complain about this."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Naresh on November 14, 2011, 15:38 GMT

    Yah definetly I am shocked that Indian fast bowlers are clocking +140. Umesh did it with all 6 balls in an over (last test match) A false impression was given by English fans that we could not. We are doing it on our flat tracks - imagine when we hit Australia. Also we were doing bowling faster than Windies bowlers.

  • Kavin on November 14, 2011, 13:20 GMT

    i hope he is saying the truth!

  • Padmanabhan on November 14, 2011, 2:54 GMT

    As usual the phenomenon of having for the first time a genuine quick attack has been lost to most viewers. I hope Yadav and Varun should both be selected with Ishant. Three fast bowlers are a must for Australia and they must be groomed now in the Windies Tests.

  • Satish on November 14, 2011, 2:17 GMT

    Ishant is more sensible these days and is more consistent.. Hope he stays fit during entire Australian tour.. And, Zak too!! We need them both to sustain the pressure which Australians are mounting now..

  • Manalan on November 14, 2011, 2:02 GMT

    Ishant have been playing international matches for more than 4 years. He should be knowing the work load and his body balance better than the spectators and his fans. Its important to allow the player to feel free and not to bulldoze him with the opinion about his injuries or recoveries - Any one for that matter, captain, coach, board,... any one. Fans of Team India became too technical about everything - coaching, physique building, treatments, how a player should manage temperament, etc. ;)

  • Aaron on November 14, 2011, 0:46 GMT

    I hope all is well with Ishant. I can't wait to see him come down to Australia in the summer and work some magic. I have always felt for him having to bowl on some of the flat dust bowls over in the sub-continent. He has not lost his pace, he has been overbowled in less than perfect fast bowling conditions. I predict he'll have a good summer vs Australia.

  • Muthuvel on November 13, 2011, 19:12 GMT

    Ishant might be doing a mistake, he did not want to build muscle earlier in his career when coaches suggested it. Now he thinks he can go with out surgery, hope he knows what he is doing.

  • Dummy4 on November 13, 2011, 16:20 GMT

    yes, ishant bowled with good pace in the 2nd innings and seems to have recovered rather well. Indian selectors should continue with the trend and play him and other genuine quick bowlers only for tests. Odi s can always be played with bowlers like munaf and vinay.

  • Dummy4 on November 13, 2011, 14:36 GMT

    Big Risk by deciding to delay the surgery and now deciding not to have it altogether.The Captain and Coach ought to coax Ishant to change his decision.If he breaks down in Australia could well end up as a chronic injury that will limit the number of games he plays.Already he has the odd day when he looks to have run out of steam every now and then.That said he is a long term prospect and has to be handled well in terms of fitness issues.

  • P Subramani on November 13, 2011, 14:35 GMT

    Not just Ishant I am sure even Zaheer will be fit for Australia because the selectors have shown that they can do without them with Yadav and Aaron available. Once India are no longer No 1, it hardly matters whether the galacticas who made it possible are available. A new order beckons and the Bhajjis of the past will realise that it is better to be humble and not so sure of their continuance.

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