There is always some mystery about a wrist spinner preying on the unsuspecting batsman with his offerings. In the Wankhede ODI, Adam Zampa, the Australian legspinner, once again showcased how wrist spin can spice up the game by dismissing India's mainstay Virat Kohli. It wasn't exactly a delivery that would go down as one of the finest ever bowled, but Zampa stuck to the tried and tested formula of spin bowling - subtle variations in pace. After being hit for a six, Zampa tossed it up and Kohli could only drive it back to the bowler, with the bowler pouching a sharp return catch.
It was the fourth time in ODIs that Zampa dismissed Kohli. "It's got to be an attacking approach," the legspinner revealed about bowling to attacking players. "I think if you're on the back foot and have a defensive mindset then that's when he can get on top of you. The most important thing playing in places like India against these guys is to have a little bit of character.
"You probably know you're going to get hit for boundaries but it can really get worse if you make that affect you. I have got him a few times now but I don't think there is anything in it. He still scores at over 100 (strike rate) against me," he added.
Zampa also observed that Australia's gameplan against Kohli was to start with legspin, especially in the backdrop of he himself having found some success against the India captain. "We basically just find that Virat finds legspinners hard to line up early in his innings, to be honest. He's such a great starter, even the other day he was 16 off 14 or whatever it was, how much energy he brought to the crease, his running between the wickets, some of the cover drives he played off the quicks. I think it's important to try and have a game plan to him, so we figured out for that last game that it would be good to start with legspin to him."
Incidentally, prior to the series, Kohli had also praised Zampa by noting that the spinner showcased immense self belief in the 2019 ODI series between the two sides. "He was pretty good last time, when Australia played here," Kohli had said on Monday. "He was probably one bowler who had more belief than others. Throughout the game, even when he was hit for boundaries, he kept coming at the batsmen and try and get them out, which I think is important for a wristspinner."
The legpinner also praised Ashton Agar for bowling to his fields and keeping it tidy. Agar has basically taken over from Nathan Lyon in terms of doing a holding job. "It's very similar to bowling with Lyon. I think the role I bowled with Gaz last year was he very much played a holding role. One of us will play that holding role for sure. With playing two spinners one of us is going to have to bowl quite deep in the innings so one of us is going to have to play that role as well. Both really good guys to bowl with. I think playing with two spinners it's really important to communicate the conditions and communicate plans and things like that."