No international cricketer likes to be predictable and Ishant Sharma is no exception as the talented fast bowler is now working on the outgoing delivery ahead of India’s important Test series against England.
“I have been working on the outswing delivery with the Indian team bowling coach Joe Dawes. It has been coming out nicely and I believe it will add a new dimension to my bowling,” Ishant said from the sidelines of the opening day of the Delhi Ranji Trophy team practice session at the Ferozshah Kotla ground.
When asked whether he is becoming too predictable, he answered, “In international cricket, people now know that my strength is bowling inswingers. So, I needed to develop a strength which would trouble the batsmen.”
Ishant is also taking a lot of tips from veteran India pacer Ashish Nehra, who was seen giving the lanky fast bowler some words of advice on the length that he should be bowling.
“Ashish bhai has plied his trade for the last 12 years at the international level and he was telling me about the adjustment in length that one has to make in Indian conditions.
“Like today, he was telling me that the practice wicket was a bit on the slower side and I should pitch the bowl a bit up. Likewise, on a pitch where there is good carry, I should try and hit the good length area. When I speak to him, it’s more about the practical areas than the technical area,” he said.
Ishant is happy with his rhythm in the two Duleep trophy matches that he played for the North Zone this season.
“The rhythm has been pretty good and that has certainly helped me. Though I didn’t take any wickets against Central Zone but I was happy to have bowled 26 overs. In the longer version of the game, one always aims at taking wickets rather than trying to stop runs. I would have been happier had I got a few wickets against Central.”
There has always been a trend amongst Indian fast bowlers to cut down on pace once they are back from an injury lay-off.
But Ishant doesn’t want to compromise on speed.
“Speed comes with a lot of practice. It’s about how smooth is your run-up, the release and things like that. In my case, whether I play for my club team, Delhi or India I am always ready to go flat out,” he said.
The long lay-off, which made him miss the last edition of the IPL, has helped him understand his body better.
“I have seen a lot of highs and lows in the past five years. I now know how to manage my workload and training regimen when I am playing international cricket and the do’s and the don’ts when I am not playing any cricket.”