Until a few months ago, some seniors in the Indian side hardly lost sleep over a prolonged bad patch. But things have changed after Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma began doing well for the team.
Hence, it was not surprising to see Gautam Gambhir latch on to the chance that English county, Essex, have offered to the left-hander.
He replaced New Zealand’s Hamish Rutherford for the remainder of the season (six County Championship Division Two games) and managed to score 31 before he was bowled by paceman Steven Crook in his maiden appearance against Northamptonshire at Colchester yesterday.
At the time of going to press, Essex had lost three wickets for 88 after their opponents put up a huge 531 .
And even though critics are skeptical about Gambhir’s ability to return to the national fold, he has his share of supporters. Amongst them is one of Pakistan’s all-time greats, Mushtaq Mohammad, who played for Northamptonshire a few decades ago.
“I am sure Gambhir will benefit from this stint at Essex,” Mushtaq told MiD DAY from Birmingham. “There have been many players who have managed to regain form on the county circuit and then gone on to score heavily for their county,” added the 69-year-old former captain.
India are scheduled to tour South Africa later this year and Gambhir is keen to break into the squad. “What should help Gambhir is the fact that he has played in England previously.
He is aware of the prevailing conditions, so it should not be very difficult for him to adjust even though he is making a late entry,” explained Mushtaq.