Some of sympathised, some have criticised, and that has been the story of Prasidh Krishna‘s Test debut for India last week in Centurion, where he picked up just a wicket for 98 runs in 20 overs in the team’s loss by an innings and 32 runs to go 0-1 behind in the two-match contest against South Africa. Following the shoddy performance on that spicy SuperSport Park track, notable experts in Sunil Gavaskar and Irfan Pathan have called for Krishna’s replacement, but it seems that India captain Rohit Sharma wants to back the youngster for another match.
It is unlikely that Team India deals with debutants in this fashion after just one bad game, but a certain scene from an optional practice session in Centurion last week, following the end of the first Test which wrapped up in just three days, did hint towards it. Mukesh was seen bowling to Rohit with the skipper guiding him with his lengths and angles as well.
However, when asked if that hinted at Mukesh getting a second appearance in Indian whites, having made his debut last year in the West Indies tour, Rohit, in the pre-game presser in Cape Town on Tuesday, said, the he is yet to sit down with the management and decide on the XI. He however confirmed that Ravindra Jadeja, who was out from the first Test with a back spasm, is now available for selection.
“Although we’ve had a brief chat with the management, the coaching staff, what we want from this game and what we want from the bowlers in this game, we’ve not completely finalised our playing level. Obviously, everyone is available for selection. There’s no injury concern. All of them who are here are available to play. We’ll sit down in the evening,” he said.
The veteran India opener however reckoned that although the bowling attack might look inexperienced, the players also needs to be backed and shown that faith that the management continues to trust in their abilities.
“I still feel that sometimes we’ve got a little bit of inexperience in our bowling and sometimes when you have that, you got to show some faith in them. Show trust in them and that can happen to any team. But obviously for us, like I said in the last post match press conference about Prasidh being playing his first game, we all get nervous when you’re playing your first game. It’s understandable,” he added.
“I’ll still back that thought of mine, saying that he’s got good ability to succeed at this level and especially in this format. So it’s just about showing faith and trust in everyone and getting the job done from them.”
Krishna was also part of that Centurion practice session on December 30 where he worked exclusively with India bowling coach Paras Mhambrey on his line and length for about 30 minutes. He later bowled in tandem along with Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj on Monday in the nets in Cape Town.