What is the story?
Virat Kohli has finally spoken about Indian fast bowler Mohammed Shami who has recovered from an injury and looking to make a comeback into international cricket.
Shami today turned up for Bengal in the Vijay Hazare trophy final against Tamil Nadu where he picked up 4/26 from 8.2 overs but in a losing cause.
“We sent him to play because we saw him bowling 10 to 12 overs at a go. So we wanted to give him some match practice,” Kohli said at the post-match media conference in Jharkhand where Australia held India to a draw in the third Test.
“I haven't spoken to the selectors yet so all kind of possibilities are there before the next Test,” he added.
In case you did not know
For the last few years, Shami has been the pace spearhead for the Indian cricket team in all formats of the game. He has picked wickets in a heap and in limited overs cricket been a revelation in the death overs.
But since the World Cup in 2015 he has been plagued with a lot of injuries. He played through the quadrennial event with a knee problem and then got operated afterward. The operation kept him on the sidelines for some months and then he returned to represent his stateside and got back into the Indian team again.
But then again last November he injured his knee while playing the third Test match again England. He did not play any competitive cricket until today.
The heart of the matter
Virat Kohli has said that Shami was sent to play in the Vijay Hazare Trophy so that he could be match fit again. He also added that he would like to have a word with the selectors on how and if Shami can be brought into the squad to get him a game in the fourth Test at Dharamshala.
Now, with the Border-Gavaskar series still locked at 1-1 Kohli would ideally want his premier fast bowler to exploit the cold conditions in Dharamshala.
Shami looked quite at his peak today when bowling in the finals. He got some of the crucial wickets today and looked menacing on a flat pitch. Now India have the Champions Trophy coming up in June and Kohli would want the 26-year-old to be at his best when they get to England.
The IPL however, would be quite an opportunity for the speedster to regain his match fitness.
It is indeed good news for the Indian team that Shami has recovered. Both Umesh Yadav and Ishant Sharma have been in good form with the ball and the addition of Shami is sure to boost up the strength of the pace unit.