Australian fast bowling legend Glenn McGrath says India’s pace-spin bowling combination gives them an edge over other teams in the ICC Champions Trophy starting today in the UK. The 47-year-old Aussie is in the city to train pacers at the MRF Pace Foundation. “Indian bowlers have really done well in the last two- three years. I think India have got one of the most potent attacks and the pace-spin combination will provide them an edge over other teams,” he said.
McGrath felt India will have the upper hand in the opening clash of the Champions Trophy against Pakistan on Sunday, though he did not rule out Pakistan’s chances.
“It’s always a big game whenever India play Pakistan. Although not the same powerful force they once used to be, Pakistan still have some quality bowlers and an experienced batting line-up. You never know Pakistan might just pull off a surprise on their day,” he told reporters yesterday.
He said India will be among the semi-finalists of the marquee event.
“India is a very good ODI team, expect them to do well. They should be in the top four along with Australia and England. The fourth team would be either South Africa or New Zealand,” he added. McGrath heaped praise on the current India pacers, especially Jasprit Bumrah and Umesh Yadav.
“I am impressed with the Indian bowlers. Umesh is bowling very well.
“Bumrah is a good one-day bowler. The way he bowls at the death is impressive. In addition to a fine length, he also generates good pace. Bumrah can come up with occasional yorkers as well. I hope he continues to improve.” McGrath said Australia were the favourites to win the tournament.
“I will always back Australia. England are going to be tough to beat at home and have just beaten South Africa in an ODI series. Ben Stokes will be a key player for the host,” he said.
He called Mitchell Starc the best fast bowler in the world at present. McGrath also hoped that the ongoing row over pay between Cricket Australia and the players would be resolved soon.