Pacer Zaheer nearly ready for battle

 
On Friday, Zaheer hinted at the possibility of an early return to international cricket from a left shoulder injury sustained during IPL II in South Africa in late May.

Zaheer, in the City to release the official tee-shirt for the Nike+ Human Race in Devannahali next Saturday, said: “My body looks in good shape. I spent a lot of time in Johannesburg working on my fitness and now it seems to be paying off. I’m well ahead of my schedule.

“I will take part in as many domestic match as possible. That will help me get back into the team as soon as possible,” said Zaheer, who has cited the domestic season as the reason for not taking part in the run.

Zaheer has not been picked in the Indian squad for the first two matches of the seven-match one-day series against Australia beginning on October 25, though he does figure in the Mumbai side for the West Zone T20 tournament starting on October 20.

“The biggest setback with the injury was the first couple of weeks, where I had the sling on. I have been bowling for two weeks now and I am confident of a quick comeback, but I can’t really say when,” he added.

With cricket being played round the year, many cricketers, former and present, have criticised the hectic scheduling and its impact on cricketers.

Zaheer, however, held a different opinion. “I have always said we should play more. I personally prefer playing matches to practising. More the matches, the better,” said the left-arm pacemman.

“Despite being prone to injuries, that is not a factor that plays on any bowler’s mind. We barely have time to think about it. One thing every bowler should realise is that injuries are bound to happen. We can delay the process but not escape it,” he added.
Australian speedster Brett Lee had said not so long back that the Aussies were confident of a 7-0 sweep of the one-day series.

“That’s an Australian for you,” Zaheer hit back. “It’s very typical of them. We prefer to focus on what we do and play our game. It’s time they stopped worrying about us and thinking about how to handle themselves.”

Everyone who registers for the Human Race will receive a tee-shirt from the organisers. Contrary to the norm where runners get numbered bibs, the Human Race runners’ tee-shirts will have numbers printed on them.

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