We bowled well as a unit, says Ishant

Last Updated 21 December 2013, 05:02 IST

Bowling was considered India's weak link before they arrived in South Africa but pacer Ishant Sharma said it has been the key to the team's success in the ongoing opening Test here.

Ishant's double strike in the final session of the second day of the first Test yesterday turned the match as he ended with figures of four for 79 in the South African first innings that ended on 244.

"We bowled well in the first innings. In India, only two fast bowlers operate and there aren't too many overs to bowl because the wickets back home help spinners more," said Ishant.

The lanky pacer said the pace unit didn't bowl badly in England and Australia, where India endured whitewashes last year, either but there weren't enough runs on the board.

"If you look at the way we bowled in England or Australia previously, we didn't bowl badly. There weren't enough runs on the board."

Hunting in pack always helps and that's exactly what has happened over here.

"Now we are bowling in partnerships and bowling aggressively. We bowled as a unit and it is because we are all of the same age (save for Zaheer Khan) and there is a nice bonding among us. All three pacers bowled well. As fast bowlers, we backed each other," Ishant explained.

As a bowler, there will be days when things won't go one's way and Ishant said one needs to be ready to accept that.

"...some days will be good for someone and bad for someone else. We will try to hunt as a pack in the second innings and that's more important than trying to bowl individually," he added.

Ishant admitted that the pitch had a lot of assistance for the seamers.

"There was enough assistance in the wicket for our bowling. The South African bowlers bowled outside the off-stump. We bowled into the stumps, because we thought there could be more purchase from the wicket.

"So we believed in ourselves and stuck to the plan. We bowled into the right areas, and bowled patiently," the Delhi speedster added.

Obviously the influence of Zaheer, on his comeback, is noticeable and Ishant also agreed.

"It is nice to see him back in the side. The amount of confidence he gives you while you are bowling, telling you where you lack. It's important for fast bowlers to know these things.

"(Mohammed) Shami and I are still young and we can't rectify all the mistakes while we are bowling. So his (Zaheer) presence helps us, because he is someone who tells you that if you do this then you are going to get more from this kind of track," said Ishant.

(Published 21 December 2013, 05:01 IST)

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