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Sight Screen

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Eng in Pak: some updates(-worma)

With most of the discussion around the Indian match already done(and likely to continue) I thought maybe its a good idea to change focus a bit..

So Vaughan has this to say about their prospects of facing spin attack in Pak(emphasis mine):
"I would be very surprised if we go to Pakistan and it doesn't spin. But we have become decent players of spin over the last few years," said Vaughan. "Look at the World XI team (in the recent ICC Super Test in Australia) and the success Stuart MacGill and Shane Warne (both leg spinners) had against the best players in the world. That shows what success we had against Warne. He managed to take 40 wickets but we took him for a few an over."
Can someone please update me what's he talking about?...I must've been dream-watching another Ashes in a parallel universe! Read the full article here.

And other update..Akhtar's chances seem to have brightened after he did a reasonably impressive workout in the nets, showing a couple of days late for training (so what...didn't he still grace the occasion?..some people never appreciate small mercies ;-)

Akhtar's slated to play the practice game against the visitors. With Mushtaq Ahmed also lined up for that game, the balance of Pak attack, and therefore its strategy, may be hanging on that show...although IMO they are not considering Mushtaq seriously since Woolmer has already announced Malik as the opener, and Afridi would most likely play, since his performance in last two test series has been pretty impressive.

11 Comments:

  • i am surprized the akthar is made to play the practise game... why is that? dont they want to keep him as a surprize weapon? or have they lost faith in having fitness tests to say someone is match fit or not?

    By Blogger Mayur, at 10:43  

  • secondly, what exactly is duncan fletcher smoking? i know that ENG r on a roll in the last couple of years, but does that give him the right to say that he is the best captain in the world? he has yet to prove himself in the subcontinent and then we wud see how good he really is... a much sterner test awaits for him in India and SL... AUS did amazingly well in India and SL, but what about Vaughan? they somehow scraped thru in BD and lost by an innings in the final test against SL... they have not yet played in IND and PAK so will see how they perform... i wud then go on and say he is the best... this is way to premature...

    By Blogger Mayur, at 10:54  

  • For the Pak- Eng test series, here are test bowling ratings for the Pak bowlers: overall career and against non-minnows. Ratings give some credit to the wickets taken. They also measure the contribution to the team and the level of performance.

    Name .... innings . wickets .. average . SR . ... . rating . .. non-minnows
    Shoaib Akhtar . . .65 .. 143 . . 24.83 . . 44.35 .. ... 10.69 .... 9.51
    Shabbir Ahmed . . 17 ... 46 ... 23.83 . .. 51.74 ... .. 9.55 ...... 7.21
    Danish Kaneria . . 53 .. 129 . . 30.02 . .. 60.4 .. . .. 8.17 ....... 5.53
    Shahid Afridi . . .. 33 .... 35 ... 29.8 ... . 58.06 .. .. 2.64 ..... 2.64
    Abdul Razzaq . . .. 61 ... 74 ... 38.01 . . 75.53 .... .. 2.50 ...... 2.57
    Moham' Sami . . . 38 ... 54 .. . 49.54 . . 85.63 .. . . 1.95 .... . 1.68
    (Notes: Pak faces difficult bowling choices. In particular should they select Razzaq and Afridi and then go in with three speclialist bowlers. Shoaib Akhtar and Shabbir have some issues that may affect their performances. Gul and Rana have not played enough, though Gul looks like a decent prospect. Sami has done little.)

    Comparison with Indian bowlers:
    Name .... innings . wickets .. . average . SR . . . . rating .. . non-minnows
    Anil Kumble . . . .. . 173 .. 465 .. 28.38 . . 65.93 .. ... 12.59 . ... 11 77
    Harbhajan Singh. . . 87 .. 205 . . 28.25 . . 62.12 ... . . 9.31 .... .. 9.16
    Irfan Pathan . . . .. . 30 . . 66 . . 26.15 .. . 49.2 . .. . . 7.94 ..... . 1.44 ***
    Zaheer Khan .. . . . . 72 ... 111 .. 36.25 .. . 66.6 . . . . 3.93 ... . . 3.25
    Laxmi Balaji . . . . . 15 . .. 27 . .. 37.22 . . 65.04 ... .. 3.18 .. . . . 3.18
    Murali Kartik . .. . . 15 . .. 24 . .. 34.17 . .. 80.5 .. .. .. 2.68 .. .. . 3.24
    Ashish Nehra . . . . . 29 ... 44 . .. 42.41 . .. 78.34 .. .. 2.42 . . . . 1.54
    (Notes: Kumble is India's best ever bowler. Harbhajan is tied second best. Pathan's great career record is mainly against two weak teams. Balaji is an upcoming bowler. Zaheer is on the decline. Nehra has done little.)

    By Blogger IssaicN, at 11:35  

  • mayur..I think yes they have lost faith in Akhtar...or rather stopped believing in miracles as far as Akhtar's lasting capabilities are concerned...hence the extended test. Its more about form+fitness rather than fitness only....from what I read he was pretty ineffective in the super series ODIs despite playing all 3 of them.

    and about Eng coach, and some of their players...well I hope just for reality sake (if not for Indian cricket's sake) they do come down to earth....well they are a good team...they *should* win in Pak if they keep their heads down....but India would be totally different ball game for them. And playing spin, actually playing good bowling....its a difficult task of their lineup...whom I dont rate very high.

    By Blogger worma, at 11:38  

  • issacn..interesting point...Pak having to play only 3 specialist bowlers....yes that definitely means relying on Akhtar to be one of those is a bit tough. I therefore think this Pak test lineup is skewed....they should play a bolwer in place of Razzaq also...

    By Blogger worma, at 11:41  

  • worma and issacn: true that PAK have lot of options in terms of selecting their bowling lineup... wolmer and inzi have to make the right choices... they definitely have a very feeble batting lineup and they dont want to compliment that with a feeble bowling attack consisting of akthar, MS, afridi, kaneria, razzak and malik... i dont think there is anyone besides kaneria to holdup one end and bowl a tight spell when the situation is very demanding especially on a first day wicket... but as i have said earlier, worma, PAK wud go with akthar, MS, afridi, kaneria, razzak and malik...

    By Blogger Mayur, at 11:57  

  • yep mayur...I'm afraid they would go with what you predict :-)...lets hope Razzaq is in good form...which I havent seen for a while from him(in bowling)

    By Blogger worma, at 12:20  

  • the eng vs pak series promises to be an interesting tussle between fletcher and woolmer. I personally would want woolmer to win but lets just wait and watch folks...

    By Blogger Balaji, at 12:24  

  • I think what he is trying to say is that even though Warne can get wickets, they still score well of him. In other words, Pakistani spinners may be able to get the English out but they wont be able to stem the run-rate.

    By Blogger Rishi Gajria, at 13:18  

  • Worma,

    Razzaq seems to have lost the nip he used to have in the past in his bowling repertoire. Nowadays, he bowls well but without that extra bit of bite off the track.
    Yup, I get the feeling Pakistan may lose the test series if they try to cover up the perceived weakness in batting by loading up the side with all-rounders.

    By Blogger Rishi Gajria, at 13:23  

  • rishi thats not true...Warne was the most economical of all Aus bowlers...and the second most economical overall....and considering that he was on the losing side..thats a big achievement!..the Eng won the series because of other reasons..they batted well against other bowlers...the Aussies bowled badly(except Warne) and batted terribly. All this lead to their loss. Warne was as superb as any bowler can be in a series...the Eng definitely did not master him...there was not a single batsman, not even Peterson, who played him confidently throughout. Yes KP did have some success in hitting him, but did not master him(like Sachin never 'mastered' McGrath down under in 1998-99 tour)

    The rest of the batsmen were as shaky as they can be. I really dont know what Vaughan is talking about!....I mean they have won the series so obviously they would have made runs...

    By Blogger worma, at 16:49  

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