London, June 4
Former Indian head coach and all-rounder Ravi Shastri opines that the Australian pace attack has more edge as compared to the Indian attack during the ICC World Test Championship final against Australia, which will start on June 7 onwards at The Oval.
In an event ahead of the World Test Championship final, Shastri said, "If Jasprit Bumrah was there in the Indian squad, I would have said that both bowling attacks are strong. But their (Australian attack) has Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc."
Bumrah is notably out for the last eight to nine months due to a back injury. In April, Bumrah underwent surgery on his lower back in New Zealand. The medical procedure was successful and helped Bumrah get free from pain. He also missed the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023.
Shastri said that both the teams involved are the best Test teams in the world due to their sheer consistency over the last two years.
Shastri also said that Test cricket needs some superstars and larger-than-life characters to get more people to watch it.
"Absolutely, you need characters, you need personalities. It is not about runs, wickets and averages. You need characters to make people watch the game. I remember coming here in 1981, England was playing its worst cricket, but Ian Botham single-handedly turned the Ashes on its head. It gave a much-needed injection to Test cricket, and the English cricket. He put a lot of people on the seats," said Shastri.
On his most memorable Test hundreds, Shastri said that his maiden Test hundred against Pakistan was one of his most memorable centuries.
Australia ended at the top of the WTC table with 11 wins, three losses, five draws in 19 matches whereas India ended in second position with 10 wins, five losses and three draws.
India's squad for WTC final Rohit Sharma (Captain), Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, KS Bharat (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Shardul Thakur, Mohd. Shami, Mohd. Siraj, Umesh Yadav, Jaydev Unadkat, Ishan Kishan (wk).
Suryakumar Yadav, Mukesh Kumar and Yashasvi Jaiswal have been named as stand-by players for the high-stakes match.
Australia squad Pat Cummins (c), Scott Boland, Alex Carey (wk), Cameron Green, Marcus Harris, Travis Head, Josh Inglis (wk), Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Todd Murphy, Michael Neser, Steve Smith (vc), Mitchell Starc, David Warner
Standby players Mitch Marsh, and Matthew Renshaw.