India vs England: Senior pacer Ishant Sharma said he is not thinking about Kapil Dev’s record of 131 Test matches at the moment but is focussed on helping India reach the World Test Championship final.
Ishant Sharma likens winning World Test Championship to World Cup triumph (PTI Photo)
- Ishant Sharma is all set to play his 100th Test match in Ahmedabad from Wednesday
- I only play one format, so the WTC is like a World Cup for me: Ishant
- Ishant said he is not thinking too far ahead but is focussed on helping India win England series
India fast bowler Ishant Sharma said on Monday that he is focused on one match at a time and not thinking far too ahead but stressed it would be great if India go and win the World Test Championship final.
Ishant, who will become only the 2nd Indian fast bowler after Kapil Dev to feature in 100 Tests when he steps onto the field in Motera for the pink-ball Test against England from February 24. Ishant has had a roller-coaster of a ride but with an incredible run of form over the last 3 years, the Delhi pacer has become the leader of a much-talked-about Indian pace attack.
Despite featuring in domestic white-ball competitions and the Indian Premier League, Ishant has been deemed a white-ball specialist. Ishant last played ODIs for India in 2016 and T20Is as early as 2013. The pacer acknowledges the fact that he is being seen as a red-ball specialist and that winning the World Test Championship final would be as special as winning the World Cup.
“There’s a lot of time for 131 (Kapil Dev’s Test mark). Right now, I am only thinking about how we can win the next test. And then the next so that we can qualify for the final of the World Test Championship. I only play one format, so the WTC is like a World Cup for me. If we reach the final and then go on to win it, it will be the same feeling as winning the ICC World Cup,” Ishant said.
India are at the 3rd spot of the World Test Championship table and need nothing less than a 2-1 win in the ongoing series against England to book a place with New Zealand in the Lord’s final.
I just go one Test at a time: Ishant
Ishant, 32, would have got to the 100-Test landmark had he been fit for the memorable tour of Australia where India won a Test series 2-1. But the senior pacer is ready to move on and focus on the game, one day at a time.
“The sooner you forget things and move on in life, the better it is for you. This is the biggest lesson I have learned,” he added.
Responding to whether he thinks he can play till the age of 38 and emulate the likes of James Anderson, Ishant said: “Thirty-eight is difficult to say as of now. I just go one test at a time. I understand my body, what kind of training I need to do. I am looking after myself.”
With the series leveled at 1-1, India will take on England in the 3rd Test at the Motera Stadium in Ahmedabad from Thursday.