Ravi Shastri, the Team India head coach, is mighty impressed with Washington Sundar’s performances at the start of his Test career. Shastri can see a bit of him in Sundar, although he says the youngster “has far more natural talent” than he did.
Making his debut in Brisbane in unforeseen circumstances, Sundar has been quiet brilliant with the bat in his first couple of series. With his bowling also going from strength to strength and adding to his prospects.
The 21-year-old has played an extremely crucial part in taking his team to the World Test Championship final, making significant half-centuries in the two series-deciding Tests at the Gabba and Ahmedabad.
“Washington Sundar has far more natural ability than I had. I think he should be batting in top-four for his state, there is no question about that. I think he should be batting in the top four, he is good enough and he belongs there,” Shastri said at the presser on Sunday (January 7).
“At the same time, if he can focus on his bowling, India would have a very good number six in the future. Somebody could get you a 60-70 and then bowl for you. That was my role at number six, and I think he can do the same role and even better,” he added.
Sundar has unbelievable composure: Shastri
Coach Shastri also counted Sundar among the bright youngsters who have shone through under pressure in the last two series wins, hailing him for his talent and mental fortitude.
“Sundar has unbelievable composure and temperament,” he said. “For someone, who was an opening batsman during the U-19 days but to see that kind of body language, unfazed by the best bowlers in the world during the toughest situations, as in Brisbane and Chennai.”
“It was unreal, this innings in the fourth Test is even better than Brisbane because you are playing at home and you have a World Championship on the line. 50 adrift from the opposition and you are batting with Pant, yes you have Axar to come in next but your objective is to get closer to 205.”
“These youngsters are not thinking of that, they are playing normal and fearless cricket. They are playing free cricket, and then they went on to get 360,” Shastri added.