West Indies legend Michael Holding has said that he is impressed with the growth of fast bowling in India and credited BCCI for having lively pitches that have encouraged the likes of Mohammad Shami, Umesh Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar to a great extent.
During an interview with PTI, Holding quoted:
I was very impressed with Indian fast bowlers, especially Mohit Sharma and Mohammed Shami. It was surprising to me. I think what has contributed to India’s fast bowling is the changing of the nature of pitches in India. They have now better pitches, bouncy pitches and it is encouraging bowlers and it helped their batsmen to handle bouncers as well.
But the lanky pacer, who finished with 391 international wickets, rued the fact that fast-bowling is dying because of excessive cricket as it becoming extremely difficult for the bowlers to remain for a long time.
In World Cup any bowler would have disappeared, especially in the last 10 overs with smaller boundaries and bigger bats and fielding restrictions. What is killing fast bowlers is the amount of cricket that is being played. It is difficult to maintain your fitness, speed and skill.
Holding also said that he was bored and disappointed with World Cup because there were too many one-sided games in the tournament.
Too many sides batted first and batted out the opposition. Teams batting second were not competitive. I found that aspect of the game boring. Many a times I slept over during the second innings.
I would love to see a shorter World Cup, which doesn’t necessarily mean lesser teams, and more competitive cricket with proper size bats.
Talking about the format of next World Cup, he said:
If ICC has 10 teams then 10 months ahead of the tournament they should have top six teams qualify for the main draw, while the rest four should face a play-off. I don’t want the Test playing nations qualifying automatically.