T.JOHN’S, Antigua, CMC-Indian pacer Shardul Thakur says he is prepared to put in the hard work needed on slow Caribbean pitches if given the opportunity to make his Test debut in the series against West Indies starting on Thursday.While India appear set to use as many as three specialist spinners against the homeside, Thakur says he believes fast bowlers have a crucial role to play in the series.The 24-year-old fast bowler took one wicket for 50 runs from 22 overs in a recent tour match against a West Indies Board President’s XI.“The pitches here for both practice matches were slow and similarly we are also expecting slow wickets in the Test series too so the bowlers know we have to keep making effort,” saidShardul.“The slower the wicket, the effort is more.“Making an effort is my work and needed in all matches. It does not matter how the pitch is. A fast bowler has to give effort on each delivery.”Shardul’s comments follow two warm-up matches between the touring Indians and a WICB President’s XI which ended in draws but gave the visitors vital practise ahead of the series.“I did bowl a few bouncers and almost got a wicket with one in the second innings,” Shardul told cricket.com.au“Even in the first innings, the wicket I got was off a bouncer. I use it as a surprise weapon and it is more of a variation in my bowling.”The uncapped quickie says he is patiently waiting to make his Test debut for India.“We have a long season ahead of us. I am used to playing the domestic season that starts inSeptember and goes on until March-April,” he said.“So I just hope my fitness shapes up and I hope to get a look-in at some point.”The Test series between India and the West Indies starts Thursday in Antigua.
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