IND vs ENG: Former West Indies cricket captain and legend Clive Lloyd heaped praise on Virat Kohli led Team India. Impressed with India’s consistency, squad strength and variety, Clive Lloyd said the current India team could be the best ever from the country.
The legend is also impressed with the team’s fitness levels and determination to bounce back from tough results. But what impressed him the most was India’s determination to bounce back from a heavy eight-wicket loss in the 3rd Test. In India’s only pink-ball Test abroad, Virat Kohli & Co were bowled out for 36 in the second innings. But they were not bogged down by the embarrassing score. In the next three Tests, India bounced back and won the historic series 2-1.
“They are a much better side because they have variety, the players are fitter and more professional… Yeah, I would think so… Don’t forget they came from behind most times in Australia and that was excellent. Judging by their performances from that series you can say that this is the best Indian team ever,” Clive Lloyd told The Telegraph.
Rahane leads India’s fightback
The turnaround happened after captain Virat Kohli returned to India to be present for the birth of his first child with Anushka Sharma. Ajinkya Rahane took charge and steered the team to good fortunes.
Under Rahane, India fought hard to win the Boxing Day Test with the Mumbaikar leading from the front with an invaluable century. In the Sydney Test, Ravichandran Ashwin and Hanuma Vihari put up a strong show to deny the hosts a chance to take lead in the series. Vihari’s 23 runs off 161 balls and Ashwin’s 39 off 128 saved the match for India.
In the final Gabba Test, it was another test for a young Team India. With an experienced pace attack sidelined with injuries, Mohammed Siraj, playing only his 3rd Test, returned with a five-wicket haul. Then, it was India’s young wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant, who scored a fighting 89 to help India chase a mammoth 325-run target on the final day in Brisbane to win the match in the last hour of play and the series 2-1.
Clive Lloyd was also impressed by India’s leading pacer Jasprit Bumrah. The West Indian great lauded his efforts and said he has the ability to rescue India from any difficult situation.
“Bumrah is thinking all the time and can surprise you any time. He can bowl the vicious bouncer, he can get the ball to swing around, he bowls the slower ones. That is why India are where they are at the moment. He can provide breakthroughs at a time when the side is struggling,” Lloyd said.