Pakistan bowling department can trouble England: Wasim Akram

Sudipta / 10 July 2016

Former Pakistan bowling great Wasim Akram said Pakistani bowlers will get  plenty of swing on English pitches after seeing two  practice matches.

Talking about England he said they have depth in the bowling attack although James Anderson is ruled out in the first Test along with Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes.

“It’s Pakistan’s batting that I’m worried about, even with James Anderson missing,” Wasim said in The Sunday Times.

“Any player with a back-foot technique, or who is neither forward nor back, will struggle against these bowlers in these conditions.”

Pakistan pace department is also a formidable one with the return of Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz, who returned from an injury.

Wasim Akram feels that Amir will be able to make an impression in the first Test at the Lord’s and he will cope with the hostile situations.

Amir’s left arm lightening fast deliveries with the vicious swing will trouble England batsmen, especially Gary Ballance, who was called in the 12 men squad for the first Test one year after.

“From what I have seen of Gary Ballance he is mainly a back-foot player,” Wasim said.

“I would expect Pakistan to pitch the ball up and take it away from him, posting three slips and a gully, while keeping an open point, mid-off and extra cover to encourage the drive.

“That way you have a chance of him nicking off. But you have to be consistent and patient.

“England is a great place to use the width of the crease against left-handers. Start off close to the stumps, and then once in a while go wide.

“You can go round the wicket, or over, as long as you keep good control of the ball. “I hope Pakistan have done their homework because the new ball swings a lot more in England, and can reverse more too.

“Credit to England’s bowlers; they have learned not just how to reverse the ball but how to maintain it so that it reverses for longer.”

Akram also said that leg-spinner Yasir Shah will be able to hold the one end while at the other end, pace bowlers will be able to exploit the situation. Akram feels Wahab Riaz’s toe crushers will be a lethal weapon for Pakistan

“The great thing about having pace and spin working together is that it does not matter so much what the pitch is doing, or whether you win the toss. You have the bases covered,” he said.

“Myself, Waqar and Shoaib Akhtar used to operate in short bursts while Saqlain Mushtaq attacked or defended. One of us was always fresh to come back. Misbah-ul-Haq is an experienced captain with a good brain and knows how to handle his bowlers.