‘Credit goes to players who have worked hard’: Shami on India’s formidable pace bowling attack

The credit for India’s formidable pace bowling attack should go to every playing member, who have put in all the hard yards in the last 6-7 years feels Mohammed Shami, whose five-wicket haul put India in a commanding position against South Africa on the third day of the first Test of the three-match series, at SuperSport Park, here on Tuesday.

The 31-year old bowled brilliantly and took a five-wicket haul (5/44), helping India bundle out South Africa on a low total. It was his 6th five-wicket haul in Tests.

“Indian pace bowling is a formidable one because each and every member has worked hard and achieved it all with their sheer hard work. They have created their own little niche for themselves and yes they are the ones who have put in an immense amount of hard work in the last 6-7 years. They are here on their own,” said Shami in the post-match presentation.

“Yes, credit goes to support staff. They support your skill but it’s not fair that you take any particular name. What you should see is what kind of effort that these boys have put in and I give credit to boys who have put in the effort,” he added.

Shami’s fifer also helped him achieve a personal milestone of 200 wickets. He is now third-fastest among Indian pacers to reach the landmark, achieving it in his 55th Test match.

Overall, he is the 11th Indian bowler to pick up 200 or more wickets and only the fifth fast bowler to reach the milestone. Shami is only behind Kapil Dev (434), Ishant Sharma (311), Zaheer Khan (311), and Javagal Srinath (236), at the moment.

When asked about whether he ever dreamt of picking 200 Test wickets, Shami mentioned that he only believes in working hard and results are part of the process.

“No one can ever dream as to what he can ultimately achieve when you are coming up the ranks and struggling to make a mark. Your dream is to become an India player and play with those whom you have seen on TV,” he said.

“All you can do is work hard and if you work hard you are bound to get results,” he added.

The pacer feels that a lead of 350-400 in the second innings and at least three to four sessions to bowl at Proteas could be enough for India to register a win in Centurion.

“A lead of 146 is fine but two days are still left. We have to bat for the better part of tomorrow and if we can make around 250 (in second innings) and the lead is close to 400, then we can give them four sessions or maybe a bit more,” Shami said.

“But that depends on the captain but a minimum of 350 to 400 runs will be required for sure,” he concluded.

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