Rohit Sharma Claps Back at Duckett Over Comments on Yashasvi Jaiswal’s Batting


In the lead-up to the fifth match in Dharamsala, Indian captain Rohit Sharma took a stand against England opener Ben Duckett’s recent remarks about Indian batsman Yashasvi Jaiswal. At the press conference held before the series finale at the HPCA Stadium, Sharma was prompted to reflect on Duckett’s statement, wherein the Englishman insinuated that the Indian left-handed batsman’s attacking style owed some credit to the England team.

Addressing this, Sharma wittily mentioned Rishabh Pant, a hard-hitting Indian cricketer, suggesting that Duckett might not be familiar with Pant’s similar aggressive batting. “There was a guy called Rishabh Pant in our team, probably Ben Duckett hasn’t seen him play,” retorted Sharma.

Yashasvi Jaiswal’s phenomenal success, highlighted by two double centuries, was what Duckett alluded to when he made the controversial claim. He opined that England’s tactics might have influenced the change in how opposition bats batter, stating, “When you see players from the opposition playing like that, it almost feels like we should take some credit that they’re playing differently than how other people play Test cricket.” These views were expressed after the third Test in Rajkot, inviting both surprise and criticism within cricketing circles.

Former England captain Nasser Hussain joined the discourse, offering a counter-narrative to Duckett’s assertion. He emphasized that Jaiswal’s performance was a product of his own efforts and dedication, not something learned from the English team. Hussain expressed that players should instead be observing and learning from talents like Jaiswal, and he critiqued the self-referential nature of the so-called ‘Bazball’ (a term referring to an aggressive style associated with the current England coach, Brendon McCullum), branding it borderline cultish when devoid of internal or external critique.

Adding to the depth of the conference, Rohit Sharma shifted gears to talk about the importance of domestic cricket in developing players. He stressed that playing in domestic leagues is vital for the cricketers unless they are barred due to medical reasons, and he underscored the significance of giving due regard to these tournaments. Sharma’s comments come at a time when the prioritization of the Indian Premier League (IPL) over domestic cricket is a hot topic, especially after Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer’s absences from the Ranji Trophy were noted. However, Iyer made a comeback to the red-ball competition in the semifinals for Mumbai, and Kishan returned to the twenty-over format at the DY Patil T20 Cup.

Sharma’s response at the press conference reflects more than just a sharp retort to Duckett’s claim; it shows an unwavering support for the homegrown talents and systems that have long been the cradle of Indian cricket. As the Indian team prepares for the upcoming match, the captain’s words resonate with an audience that values the grassroots of cricket just as much as the glitz of international stardom. The anticipation now builds not just for the match but also for the rippling effects of these exchanges in the cricketing community, as the game in India continues to balance the allure of international formats with the foundational strength of its domestic competitions.

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