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Mohammed Shami Heroics Puts India in the Leading Position in the Centurion Test

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Mohammed Shami
Photo Credit: India Today

Mohammed Shami’s 5-wicket haul helped India to bundle out South Africa for 197 on Day 3 of the 1st Test at the SuperSport Park in Centurion. Riding on Shami’s incredible spell on Tuesday, India grabbed a 130 run first-innings lead against South Africa.

India finished the day at 16/1 and with a total of 146-run lead pushing taw way for a victory. Mayank Agarwal, who contributed an important 60 in the first innings, was taken down for 4 by debutant Marco Jansen.

The Centurion pitch proved to be heaven for the fast bowlers as, before Shami, Lungi Ngidi of South Africa picked up 6 wickets for 71 from 24 overs in the morning session of Day 3.  India lost a total of 7 wickets in the morning session from 55 leading to the all-out on 327.

However, Shami’s heroics is more likely to leave a decisive impact on the match. In fact, Shami got his 200th Test wicket in this 55th Test to become the 5th Indian pacer to pick up 200 Test wickets. He also celebrated becoming the 3rd fasted Indian pacer to reach the milestone of 200 Test wickets only after Kapil Dev and Javagal Srinath.

After getting into the 200-wicket Club, Shami recalled, “My father has made me what I am today. I come from a village where there aren’t many facilities and even today there aren’t all facilities available. Even then, my father would cycle me 30 km to take me at coaching camp and that struggle I still remember. In those days and those situations, they invested in me and I am forever grateful.”  

“Test match isn’t any rocket science. If you are a Test level bowler, you should know your lengths and also have an idea of conditions and adapt accordingly,” Shami added.

On this occasion, several members of the cricket fraternity took the social media to congratulate the 31-year old Indian pacer. Mohammad Kaif wrote on Twitter, “Mohammad Shami is easily the world’s most underrated pacer. Bhai ko halke mein mat lena, yeh toh heavy driver hai. Shami has the same quality as Bumrah, Anderson, Cummins.”

Notably, Shami was an integral part of India’s Test series victory in Australia in 2018-19 and their impressive England tour in 2021 wherein India took a 2-1 lead in an incomplete 5-Test series. He took a total of 47 wickets in 2018 and 33 in 2019 proving his importance in the team.

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