Indian pacer Ishant Sharma expressed hope that the hosts would be able to chase down the mammoth total of 420 on Day 5 of the first Test against England. India are still 381 runs adrift of the target and have already lost a wicket but that hasn’t deterred the fast-bowler from remaining upbeat about their chances. If India do manage to pull it off, it might as well be the greatest run-chase in Indian cricket history.
Ishant Sharma himself achieved a significant milestone on Day 4 as he became the sixth Indian and the third Indian pacer to scalp 300 wickets in Test matches. He brought up the same by having Dan Lawrence trapped in front for a plumb LBW. Only Kapil Dev and Zaheer Khan are ahead of Ishant with regard to Indian pacers while Anil Kumble, Ravichandran Ashwin and Harbhajan Singh are the spinners to have done so.
‘It’s been quite a roller-coaster ride’ – Ishant Sharma
Ishant Sharma spoke to the broadcasters after the day’s play and talked about reaching the milestone of 300 wickets. He said, “It’s been quite a roller-coaster life. I’ve had a lot of experience, a lot of mentors who taught me how to bowl in the subcontinent and how to bowl abroad. I’m a bit sore, after bowling 4-over bursts in domestic cricket, and then bowling 35 overs within a gap of just 3-4 days.”
He was then asked about the task in hand for India to which he replied saying, “If we get a good start tomorrow, we can chase this down, because we have a batting line-up that is fearless and can chase this down, and it’s important to look at 381 runs and not 9 wickets. On the first two days, the pitch was not assisting us and the spinners, it felt like we played on a road, but it started turning later on in Day 4 and it was a lot more responsive then.”
India will resume tomorrow with Shubman Gill and Cheteshwar Pujara at the crease.