Former Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhter is a famous figure in the Youtube now as he runs his own channel where he gives his opinions related to cricket. The latest player he talked about was the Indian leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal, who should never be benched according to the former fast bowler.
India suffered a shocking 3-0 defeat against New Zealand in the ODI series and their bowling was not up to the mark at all. Their premium fast bowler Jasprit Bumrah finished the ODI series without picking up any wicket. However, among all the negatives, Chahal was the one bright spot in India’s bowling unit as he picked up 6 wickets in two matches.
Shoaib Akhter had words full of praise for Chahal and also labelled him as ‘street smart’.
“(Ravindra) Jadeja contains, he gets wickets occasionally, Kuldeep (Yadav) didn’t perform well but (Yuzvendra) Chahal was good. He should never be benched. Chahal has some tricks which can confuse the batsmen. He is a complete leg-spinner. He dominates the batsmen, he is street smart,” he said in his Youtube channel.
Despite winning the T20I series 5-0 where Chahal played all the games and put up a decent performance, he was benched in the first ODI to give his leg-spin partner Kuldeep Yadav a chance. It didn’t work well and Shoaib expressed his concern over the form of Kuldeep.
“Kuldeep to me looks be a bit subdued, he is not playing freely. He was never really in the game, that’s a worrying factor for India. Apart from Chahal, nobody looked like picking wickets in the middle over,” he concluded.
Chahal got his place back in the side from the second ODI and he picked up 3 wickets apiece – 3/58 in 2nd ODI and 3/47 in the 3rd ODI – in both the ODIs and was by far India’s best bowler.
Despite Chahal and Kuldeep being a successful combination, the men in blue have of late refrained playing both the leggies in the same playing XI since World Cup 2019. The duo have played 34 ODI together and scalped 65 wickets at an average of 22.73.