Former left-arm RCB quick recalled as Rohit Sharma prepares for Shaheen challenge
Rohit Sharma wishes to leave no stone unturned during India's rare six-day fitness and training camp at the NCA to prepare for the Asia Cup 2023. The Indian captain is particularly keen on quality practice sessions against the left-arm pacers to refine his game before locking horns with Pakistan's rising young speedster Shaheen Afridi again.
With Shaheen posing a major threat to the right-hander with the ball swinging both ways in that critical first over of the innings, Rohit has taken the help of the team management and NCA coaches to bring in a number of net bowlers in Bangalore.
Among this long list of pacers on net duties is Aniket Choudhary, who had a sustained burst at Rohit and India's key No.5 batter and wicketkeeper KL Rahul on Saturday (August 26), giving them plenty of good practice and feel of what it would be like facing Shaheen in the real game scenario.
Rohit calls-up ex RCB pacer for Shaheen prep
While no fast bowler in the world today can replicate the exact challenge that the Pakistani trump card brings to the table, Aniket, who has played five IPL matches for Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) back in 2017 and was part of Punjab Kings (PBKS) in 2013, presented Rahul and Rohit a decent test of their techniques.
Rohit and Rahul took turns to face Choudhary's deliveries as they looked to firm up their games and get the preparations in order for the high-octane Asia Cup group encounter versus Shaheen & company in Pallekele on September 2.
The drill is part of next phase of India's ongoing fitness and skill camp. After giving yo-yo tests on Day 1 of the camp under the supervision of NCA physios and coaches, apart from coach Dravid, the batters have been divided into separate pairs to undergo match simulation drills at the KSCA facility on Days 2 & 3.
For Rohit, personally, the drill will be important as he needs to fine-tune his technique and revisit his method to counter the inswinging ball from the left-arm angle.
The modern-day great struck a brilliant century in an attack featuring Shaheen at the 2018 edition of the Asia Cup but has since faltered to him famously at the start of the men's T20 World Cup 2021 clash in Dubai.