Cricket-No rocket science, just rhythm as Shami helps India soar

BENGALURU (Reuters) – Indian seamer Mohammed Shami said there was no rocket science behind his spectacular five-wicket haul in Thursday’s 302-run World Cup demolition of Sri Lanka and credited his success to finding rhythm and keeping his mind uncluttered.

After India scored a commanding 357-8, Shami ripped through Sri Lanka’s line-up and finished with figures of 5-18 while pace colleague Mohammed Siraj grabbed 3-16 to bundle out the island nation for 55 – their lowest total in a 50-overs World Cup.

India’s seventh victory in as many matches meant they booked their place in the semi-finals.

“All the hard work we’re putting in, the rhythm we’ve found, it’s because of that you’re getting to see this storm (on the cricket field), the incredible things our bowling unit is doing,” Shami said.

“The rhythm we’re bowling with, I can’t believe anyone will not enjoy it. So yes, we’re enjoying ourselves a lot and working together as a unit, and you’re able to see the results of that.”

Shami has now claimed 45 World Cup wickets in 14 innings – the most by an Indian bowler, surpassing seamers Javagal Srinath and Zaheer Khan on 44.

“No rocket science,” Shami said when informed that none of his World Cup wickets were lbws. “Just a matter of rhythm, good food, keeping your mind uncluttered and most importantly, the love of the people.

“The support we get in India has a huge role. When you go out of India, you get so much support from Indians. So I’ll keep trying to make everyone happy.”

Batsman Shubman Gill, who hit a run-a-ball 92 against Sri Lanka, said the bowlers had made their work easier in the tournament.

“Our bowlers have been doing a phenomenal job,” Gill said. “They’ve always restricted the opposition to below-par scores, which has made our job as batsmen easy.

“We were anticipating wickets almost on every ball… the way our fast bowlers have bowled throughout the World Cup has been sensation to watch, especially from the slips.”

(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Lincoln Feast.)