Ashish Nehra has criticized the Indian bowlers for bowling a plethora of no-balls in the first Test against England.
The hosts’ bowling attack delivered 27 no-balls across the two innings in the first Test in Chennai. The surprising part was that the spinners transgressed the front crease on fourteen of these occasions.
While talking on Star Sports, Ashish Nehra observed that bowling so many no-balls at the international level was unpardonable. All frontline Indian bowlers, barring Washington Sundar, committed this misdemeanor in the Chennai Test.
“Bowling so many no-balls is unacceptable in any form of the game, forget international cricket. You are not talking about under-14 or under-16 here, this is international cricket. It is not that one bowler has bowled the no-balls. At times, one bowler is not in rhythm and bowls 15 of the 20 non-balls. I can understand that but every bowler bowled no-balls which is definitely unacceptable, there is no doubt about that,” said Nehra.
Is there a vaccine against no-balls?
— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) February 8, 2021
The former Indian pacer highlighted that India was fortunate that none of the English batsmen were dismissed off a no-ball.
“India has to improve a lot in that. They were saved this time that no wicket fell off a no-ball. A wicket can be very important if the Test match is in a crucial phase and at that time you will curse yourself a lot,” added Ashish Nehra.
Ashish Nehra expects the Indian bowlers to address this issue in the nets. He also wants Virat Kohli and the team management to ensure that the bowlers work on this shortcoming.
“There is a three-day gap in between. They will practice at least for one day. So it is the responsibility of the players themselves, because everyone is experienced here – Ishant Sharma, Ravichandran Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah and whoever else plays, whether it is Axar Patel, Shahbaz Nadeem or Kuldeep – the team management and captain also needs to talk to them that whenever they are practising in the nets, they should not be bowling no-balls,” said Nehra
The cricketer-turned-commentator signed off by stating that the problem can only be resolved through dedicated practice in the nets.
“The practice you do is what gives you the result at the ground. You would have never heard that you are not bowling well in the nets and end up bowling very well in the match,” concluded Ashish Nehra
Shahbaz Nadeem and Jasprit Bumrah were the biggest culprits among the Indian bowlers, as they transgressed the front crease on nine and eight occasions respectively. Ishant Sharma and Ravichandran Ashwin were not too far behind either, with both bowlers delivering five no-balls apiece.
This is the most no-balls India bowled in an innings at home. Only thrice India bowled more no-balls in an innings. They are:-
26 nb – v WI at Georgetown, 2002
22 nb – v WI at Bridgetown, 1989
22 nb – v WI at St. John’s, 2006
— Kausthub Gudipati (@kaustats) February 8, 2021
The Indian team will hope to address this issue at the earliest, lest it comes back to haunt them in the forthcoming Test matches.