Can get away in India, not England, says Vihari on importance of shot selection

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safari
04 Jun 2021 | 08:05 AM
authorcricket.com staff

Can get away in India, not England, says Vihari on importance of shot selection

The India batsman managed just 100 runs in six outings in the county season with Warwickshire

Despite being away for his County stint, Hanuma Vihari has played a huge part in helping people in India, who are currently battling the second wave of Covid-19 pancemic. He has gathered about 120 volunteers, mainly from Andhra and Telangana, to help people get access to medical facilities. 

However, he will be put under stern test when against New Zealand in the World Test Championship (WTC) final followed by a five-match Test series against England between September and October.

Vihari, who made his Test debut at The Oval in 2018, reckons playing with the Dukes ball is challenging as the ball moves around all day - which was a huge challenge he faced during his stint with Warwickshire.

"Definitely, that's the challenge here. The overhead conditions play a part as well because when it is sunny, it gets a bit easier to bat, but when it is overcast, the ball moves all day. That was the challenge I faced early on in this season of county cricket - because it was quite cold and the ball was doing a lot off the wicket," Vihari told ESPNCricinfo.

Vihari also explains why he takes a middle-stump guard in England as compared to a leg-stump guard in Australia. 

"In Australia, it was more towards leg stump because there is no lateral movement there, so you can play besides the line of the ball. Here, in England, you have to get more in line and judge the off stump more because of the movement of the ball. I start on the middle stump and because I do the trigger [back and across], I end up between off and middle. At the same time, you have to remember that if it is a stump-line ball, you have to play straight," the middle-order batsman said.

Virat Kohli was Vihari's first batting partner in Test cricket and Vihari reveals how his advice of dealing with an inswinging delivery has helped him.  

"At that point, my trigger movements were different compared to now. I was young and playing my first game. I was moving more than I would have liked to at that point. My trigger movements were so far across that what he said helped me deal with the straight delivery better. Those cues helped and I ended up scoring runs and batting comfortably. But now I feel I am setting up to face the outswinger and inswinger decently. Now my game is much more in control. I know what my trigger movements are," Vihari, who has scored 100 runs from six County innings for Warwickshire, said.

Vihari also added that it is important to be certain with your shot selection in England, but you can get away with it at times in India. He was dismissed for a 23-ball duck in his debut innings after Stuart Broad found his outside edge.

"In England, you have to be really certain with your shot selection. In India, you can get away with a push, or even if it is not there to drive, you can still get away driving on the up. If I were to play that ball a second time, I would try to play as late as possible."

Vihari, who last played for India in the Sydney Test has scored 624 runs from 21 innings in Tests, which includes four fifties and a century.

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India tour of England, 2021ICC World Test Championship, 2021IndiaWarwickshireHanuma Vihari

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