Ishant Sharma retained in unchanged squad for remaining ODIs against Australia
Despite shoddy performances in the recent matches including a 30-run-over in the third ODI vs Australia, Ishant Sharma continues to find his name in the team. This means Zaheer Khan's wait extends to the next series.
Under-fire Ishant Sharma has been retained in the unchanged squad for the remaining four One Day Internationals against Australia.
Out-of-form pacer Ishant survived the axe despite being hammered for 30 runs in one over that changed the course of the third ODI between India and Australia at Mohali on Saturday. The Indian selectors have shown faith in the 15-man squad trailing tourists 2-1 in the seven-match series, despite growing calls for changes in the bowling department.
Retaining the pace attack means that there is still no room for Zaheer Khan, who was impressive in the India A's 'unofficial' Test matches against West Indies earlier this month. He played a vital role in India A's victory in the second Test, helping the home team clinch victory and level the two-match series 1-1.
Zaheer's last ODI appearance came against Sri Lanka at Pallekele in August last year. The 35-year-old pacer, along with Yuvraj Singh, underwent a rigorous six-week programme that very few sportspersons dare to venture into and virtually lived the life of a Shaolin monk at a training camp in Brive La Gaillarde, a market town south of the centre of France in August.
However, India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni has a different point of view on his team. On Sunday, the Indian skipper came out strongly in the support of his non-performing bowlers, saying that frequent changes might hamper the team in the long run.
"It will be unfair that all of a sudden when you lose one or two matches and you want playing eleven bowler to be removed and thrown out of the team by saying he is not good," he said. (Read full story)
The star of third ODI James Faulkner has offered his sympathies to the Indian spearhead - Ishant, saying that every bowler has days when he ends up looking "silly out there". (Match highlights)
Faulkner's 29-ball 64 turned the match on its head on Saturday as Australia chased down 304 with three balls to spare.
Faulkner particularly targetted Ishant in the 48th over, plundering 30 runs off it. Faulkner hit a boundary followed by two huge sixes, then stole a double and once again dispatched Ishant's last two balls for sixes. (Match in pics)
"There is always pressure to bowl at that stage. I know that as I have done that a few times for Australia...there are going to be days when you would look silly out there, and that has happened to me a lot of times, don't worry about that," Faulkner said.
"But there are also other times when you might bowl a good over and win a game for your team, that's cricket," he added. (Read more)
MS Dhoni (captain, wicketkeeper), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ishant Sharma, Vinay Kumar, Amit Mishra, Ambati Rayudu, Mohammad Shami, Jaydev Unadkat