8/22/2018 8:18:26 PM

Shastri hails India's best all-time pace attack after rout of England

Shastri hails India

Nottingham: Ravi Shastri said India now had its most potent pace attack of all time following a crushing 203-run victory over England in the third Test at Trent Bridge.

India's pacemen took 19 out of 20 England wickets in Nottingham before Ravichandran Ashwin, an off-spinner, ended the match just 10 minutes into Wednesday's fifth and final day by dismissing No 11 James Anderson.

Because the dry and dusty pitches often found in India traditionally favour spinners, their Test attacks were once dominated by slow bowlers.

But it was a very different story as the pacemen held sway at Trent Bridge, with all-rounder Hardik Pandya taking five for 28 in England's first innings 161 and fast bowler Jasprit Bumrah five for 85 in the hosts' second innings 317.

Moreover, India also have the likes of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Umesh Yadav waiting in the wings.

Team coach Shastri, asked if India now had their best pace attack of all time, told reporters: "By a mile, by a mile. No (other India) team comes even close."

Bumrah bowled a marathon 26 overs during Tuesday's play, a feat made all the more remarkable by the fact this was his first competitive match since suffering a thumb injury in a Twenty20 international against Ireland in Dublin on June 27.

"He is different, he is like when (Lasith) Malinga came on the scene or a Mitchell Johnson," said Shastri of the 24-year-old Bumrah, who only played the first of his four career Test against South Africa in Cape Town in January.

"He has that element of surprise... With that long spell he surprised us as well -- almost 30 overs in that one innings, for someone who has not played for a month and a half is commendable."

India may be the world's top-ranked Test side but in the past five years they have won just one of their six previous series outside of Asia, against a struggling West Indies.

But Shastri who has been involved in India's backroom set-up since 2014, initially as team director, was adamant they could be a force abroad.

"In the four years I've been doing this job, I think if you look at a clinical performance overseas, I think this has to be the best. When you look at all three departments, they stood up. As a batting unit, as a catching unit and as a bowling unit, so you can't ask for more," he said. 

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