T20 good for pacemen, says Aaqib

T20 good for pacemen, says Aaqib

Twenty 20 cricket is often credited for expanding the repertoire of batsmen. But former Pakistan bowler Aaqib Javed, for one, sees something positive for the fast bowlers as well.  He believes the shortest format has encouraged the bowlers to bowl quicker.

Aaqib, who is here as the coach of the UAE, has a lot of respect for the current generation of fast bowlers and he can be listed among the fans of T20 cricket.

“Flat pitches in fact help bowlers to bowl fast. If there is swing and seam available, the bowler has to think a lot about the line and length besides what variations to bring. A flat pitch requires him to just bowl fast with the variations. I feel this format really encourage bowlers to bowl quicker. There are just four overs and that suit the bowlers and it is best to go fast,” Javed told Deccan Herald.

The 43-year-old, who played a key role in Pakistan’s 1992 World Cup triumph, said his country has failed to produce a quality fast bowler in the last 4-5 years.

“The current side has four genuine fast bowlers in Mohammad Sami, Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Aamir and Mohammad Irfan. Then we have a leg-spinner in Shahid Afridi. I really appreciate their talent,” he said. “But in the last 4-5 years, Pakistan have not produced new fast bowlers. The fact that you have to call Sami means that development of the game has stopped.”

Aaqib also felt India have not been able to take proper care of their fast bowlers.

“India had got some great bowlers going during the World Cup. Umesh Yadav and Mohammad Shami bowled excellently during last year’s World Cup but what happened to them?  How can you not take care of them. Fast bowling is a unique skill, it needs to be taken care of,” said Aaqib.

The menace of fixing has troubled both the neighbours. Aaqib’s career had ended amidst the match fixing controversy from which he had come clean. Incidentally, he was the Pakistan bowling coach when Mohammed Aamir was caught for spot-fixing.  He admitted being deeply hurt by his ward.

“I feel every player need to develop his sense of right or wrong. Every board needs to develop a policy to sensitise the young cricketers right from 14-15 years of age about the menace of fixing,” he said.

“I was very disappointed when the news about Aamir broke out.  “I was the bowling coach at that time. I had put in hours with Aamir in training. I can only hope he has learnt his lessons but it will take him some time to earn the trust and respect of everyone. He must be mentally and physically ready to face the contempt of his peers and public. I hope he will show to others that he has learnt his lessons and turn it into something positive."

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