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Beware of my wrong ‘un, Yasir warns England batters

  • July 08, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Leg-spinner Yasir Shah has sent a warning to the England side, declaring that the wrong ‘un will be his main weapon in the three-match Test series starting at Old Trafford in Manchester on August 5.

In a video conference with a group of journalists Tuesday, Yasir said that unlike the previous series where he struggled to take wickets with his googly, this time the wrong ‘un would be his primary weapon.

“I have worked hard on bowling googly mainly because I have an expert leg-spin coach, Mushtaq Ahmed, with me. He has worked on my bowling variety. I have trained for hours on mastering googly, and when I started delivering the wrong ‘un against batsmen during a practice session the other day, it worked exceptionally well. I pitched the ball on the right spot and got the spin that was required to beat batsmen. I know my googly now has all the potential to trouble English batsmen during the series.”

Yasir praised Mushtaq for his uncanny knowledge of the art of leg-spin and English conditions. “No one knows English conditions better than Mushtaq. He has years and years of experience of bowling in county cricket and, as such, knows well what is required here. My coach believes that spinners get more purchase of the wicket during late English summer, and August provides us with an ideal opportunity.”

Unlike Old Trafford, spinners get more help at Ageas Bowl Hampshire, where Pakistan will play the last two Test matches. “Moin Ali had a good outing recently in a Test as a spinner, and I am very optimistic that the playing track at the Ageas Bowl would also have something for me.”

The leg-spinner — who helped Pakistan win series after series in UAE — hoped that changes in playing conditions due to Covid-19 would not affect spinners. “Admitted that fast bowlers will have to work extra but things would not change much for spinners.”

He did not agree to a question that the visitors had less experience. “We have with us some experienced players who have enough exposure to English conditions. Even the new one, like Naseem Shah, is having a good time with the Dukes ball. So to say that we would struggle because of experience holds no weight-age. The majority of our batsmen are having vast knowledge of playing in England. On top of all that, we are equipped with experienced coaching staff having all the expertise of English conditions.”

Yasir refused to set a benchmark for the batsmen to score a total for the bowlers to bowl at. “It depends from pitch to pitch and ground to ground. What kind of conditions and pitches we are playing on would be the main issue.”

On his form and fitness, he said he had a lean patch mainly because of the injury. “Once I recovered from injury, I needed time to get into the top groove. My last two Tests would suggest that my form was getting back. We have a whole month until the start of the series.”

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