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Wasim Akram
Wasim Akram
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Birthday Special: 5 instances when Wasim Akram destroyed Indian batting

India vs Pakistan always promises to be a breathtaking thriller one. It’s really difficult to put the passion of the people of two nations into words and one has to experience it to believe it. But there is obviously more spice in the clash when lethal fast bowlers like Wasim Akram are involved.

Akram, who hunted over 900 wickets in the international arena, used to terrorise almost every batting line-up during the course of his career.

On his 50th birthday, let’s take a look at Wasim Akram’s top five performances against India.

Kohli has been a treat to watch: Wasim Akram
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Kohli has been a treat to watch: Wasim Akram

Heaping praise on Indian star Virat Kohli, legendary pacer Wasim Akram has said he would be worried if he had to bowl to Royal Challengers Bangalore captain.

Speaking to India Today, Akram said that Kohli’s ability to score runs with proper cricketing shots makes him a very dangerous batsman. The Swing of Sultan said that Kohli’s technique gives very little chance to the bowlers to dismiss him.

“Belief, his ability and on top of that his technique. We haven’t seen him play the reverse shot or the lap shot, he always plays proper cricketing shots with the full face of the bat. That’s why he has been very consistent and as a bowler if I had to bowl at him, I will be worried. It’s like in ODI cricket when Sachin Tendulkar opened the innings, it was very difficult to bowl at him because Sachin as a batsman and Kohli as a batsman will hardly give you a chance to get them out,” Akram said.

With an astonishing 919 runs at an mind-boggling average of over 83, Kohli has set this year’s IPL on fire. His ability to hit sixes at will in this edition has made him even more dangerous. The Delhi-lad has hit 36 sixes in this edition only. Lauding Kohli’s achievements, Akram said that watching Kohli bat has been a treat to the eyes.
“Kohli has scored 36 sixes in this IPL … they are lot of sixes. In my cricketing career, I have 50 plus sixes and those days sixes were rare. So, you can imagine he is powerful, he is strong and he can hit the ball miles outside the stadium. He has been a treat to watch,” he added.

Kohli’s team Royal Challengers Bangalore have qualified for this year’s final after defeating Gujarat Lions in the first qualifier. They will face the winner of the second qualifier which will be played between Gujarat Lions and Sunrisers Hyderabad.

viratkohli-ipl9
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Kohli fears only one bowler and he may never bowl to Kohli!

Indian Test captain and the run machine of team India, Virat Kohli has revealed which bowler he fears the most, despite his blistering form right now. He confessed that he would have feared to face the “the King of Swing” Wasim Akram the former fast bowler from Pakistan.

“The bowler I most fear, or I would have feared if I had played [against him] would be Wasim Akram; fast and skillful,” Kohli answered a quick-fire question in an interview with CNN.

Earlier Wasim Akram heaped praise on Virat Kohli and admitted he reckons Kohli as the best batsman in the world.

“Kohli is the best batsman in the world. There comes a time in a batsman’s life, where you learn how to score runs,” Akram told few days back. “He plays with authority in all three formats. It’s difficult to bowl at him. I would have found it very difficult to bowl at him.”

When Virat Kohli was asked how different is it to bat against Pakistan as compared to other teams he said: “Now, no. But initially, that used to be a massive change in my mindset. When I came to play for the Indian team, in my head, I saw those games as a fan. I didn’t know what goes on in the changing room, how those players interact with each other, whether they talk or whether they don’t want to talk, whether they are aggressive on the field; I didn’t know anything.”

When questioned about the dressing room scenario of Indian and Pakistani players he was quick to reply: “It is absolutely normal. You see the India and Pakistan players talk to each other, you can just keep laughing.”

“Somewhere you feel that yes they understand what we are saying and we understand what they are saying. So, there is that mutual respect and there is mutual admiration between the two teams,” Kohli concluded.

Meanwhile, the destructive right-hander smashed three fifties in the T20I series in Australia, followed it up consistently performing in the Asia Cup and was undoubtedly the best batsman in the World T20. That unbelievable form has carried onto the Indian Premier League (IPL) and with 677 runs from 11 matches so far, he is way ahead of everyone on the scoring list. The key word for Kohli remains consistency and only two scores of less than 20 in the ongoing IPL proves it.

His 677 runs include three centuries (the first batsman to score three hundred in a single IPL season) along with four half-centuries. Ironically until this year, Kohli didn’t have a single T20 hundred on his name, but he has raised his game in this shortest format so much that even he is a little bit shocked.

Over the last five months, the Delhi run-machine has been on a frenzied dash, rewriting one record after another. But Virat Kohli’s game is not just about breaking records – it’s all about the way he is destroying the bowlers at the moment.

First Day-Night Test at Adelaide Oval
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10 most influential innovations in world cricket

Cricket over the years has been modernised into a game that has no similarity to his format that innovated in the 16th century. England cricket was poor and British Imperial ship carried cricket to every corner of the world- Europe, Africa, Carribean, South East Asia- that made a game popular. Since  1864, when the Test cricket innovated cricket has worn many innovations. Here are the 10 most influential innovations in world cricket.

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Wasim Akram criticizes former Pakistan players

Pakistan legend Wasim Akram, who was part of a panel appointed by the Pakistan Cricket Board to help shortlist candidates for a new head coach after Waqar Younis resigned from the post following Pakistan’s dismal performance in World T20, has criticised former Pakistan players.
The former players’ refusal to apply for the Pakistan head coach role through the panel has made Akram angry.

While the retired bowler did not mention any name but it was clear that his comments were for Mohsin Khan and Aaqib Javed when he made his comments to Geo News.

Former Pakistan batsman Mohsin Khan reportedly said he was not willing to be interviewed by a panel containing Akram and Ramiz Raja as they are his “juniors” and that he would send his application directly to the PCB chairman Shaharyar Khan.

Aaqib Javed, the former Pakistan fast bowler, and ex-UAE coach, reportedly said he would not apply since he felt the panel was set on hiring a foreign coach.

“What sort of attitude and mindset is this?” Akram said. “One former player said I will apply and talk directly to the chairman. When you have such a mindset how can one expect them to work well with the Pakistan team?”

Former South Africa and Australia coach Mickey Arthur was eventually appointed as Pakistan’s coach.Talking about him, Akram said that the new coach will take some time to improve Pakistan’s fortunes on the cricket field.
“One should not expect him [Arthur] to bring about improvement immediately as our team is currently languishing at ninth position in the ODI rankings,” Akram said. “Even he will require time to turn things around.”
Pakistan will be playing in England in July. The tour  will include four Tests, five ODIs, and a T20I. Akram said that he is expecting a tough tour, particularly for the batsmen.

“Don’t expect them [England] to prepare flat pitches for our batsmen. The Duke ball will seam and swing on grassy pitches and it will be a real test for our batsmen to negotiate the ball.”

Akram also said that he is not impressed with the decision of the new selection panel, chaired by Inzamam-ul-Haq, to drop Ahmed Shehzad and Umar Akmal from the training camp for the England tour probables on disciplinary grounds.

“If we drop players on purely disciplinary grounds then let me tell you many of our era would not have even played for Pakistan including myself,” Akram said. “I think if a player has a problem it is the job of the team management and captain to deal with it and get him to perform.”

Wasim Akram
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Angry Wasim Akram lashes out at former Pakistani players

Pakistan fast bowling great Wasim Akram has lashed out at some former stalwarts who refused to apply for the head coach’s job of the national team because of his involvement in the process of shortlisting the candidates.

Without taking names Akram criticised former Test cricketers, Mohsin Khan, and Aaqib Javed, Akram said he was disappointed to know some former players didn’t  want to apply because they felt the Pakistan Cricket Board had already been advised to appoint a foreign coach by him and another former captain Ramiz Raja.

“What sort of attitude and mindset is this. One former player said I will apply and talk directly to the Chairman. When you have such a mindset how can one expect them to work well with the Pakistan team,” Akram told Geo News channel.

Akram and Ramiz were appointed by the PCB to help it shortlist coaching candidates for the head coach’s position which eventually went t South  African Mickey Arthur, Peter Moores and Australian Stuart Law pulled out of the race.

The former fast bowler ,w hi is now a well-known commentator, said, he had always believed in giving respect to his senior players.

“But even respect is a give and take the thing and one expects to be respected by everyone,” Akram said.

Akram said he and Ramiz had only helped the PCB in shortlisting the candidates.

He confirmed that no high profile Pakistan coach had sent his application through the given channel by the Board. Akram was clearly riled by the statements of Mohsin, who said he wouldn’t apply to his juniors or players with tainted pasts.

“It is shameful but this downslide has not happened overnight. It is a result of the fact that our domestic cricket structure has lost its competitive edge and is not producing quality players for a while now,” Akram said.

Akram said Pakistan should expect a tough time when they tour England this summer.

“Don’t expect them (England) to prepare flat pitches for our batsmen. The Duke ball will seam and swing on grassy pitches and it will be a real test for our batsmen to negotiate the ball,” he said.

Asked about the decision to drop opening batsman Ahmed Shehzad on disciplinary grounds from the list of probable for the national camp being set up ahead of the tour to England, Akram said he didn’t agree with this approach of selectors or the Board.

“If we drop players on purely disciplinary grounds than let me tell you many of our eras would not have even played for Pakistan including myself. I think if a player has a problem it is the job of the team management and captain to deal with it and get him to perform,” he said.

Waqar Younis
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Akram was much better bowler than me, says Waqar

It doesn’t matter whether Waqar Younis edges over his own countryman Wasim Akram or not. It matters how they treat each other. It matters how they give respect to each other. Former Pakistan captain Waqar Younis admits that his bowling partner Wasim Akram was much better bowler than him after won the ODI GOAT contest.

In a contest called ODI GOAT (Greatest of All Time) by a website of Cricket Australia. Wasim and Waqar were pitted against each other and the fans get to choose who the better bowler among them was. Wasim got just 43 percent of the votes, while Waqar won the race with 57 per cent votes to his credit. Waqar had recently resigned as the Pakistan coach after the team’s disastrous show in the T20 World Cup 2016.

Waqar tweeted about his appreciation to Wasim. “Appreciate all the votes for me but in my eyes there is no match @wasimakramlive was far better bowler than me. #ODIGOAT #respect,” Waqar tweeted.

ODI Goat is a knockout competition to decide who the fan thinks is the greatest ODI player of all time among the top 64 ODI players. Players like Sachin Tendulkar, Viv Richards, Javed Miandad and others were also part of this competition. From 64, it will go down to 32, then 16, 8, 4 and then the final two.

Both Waqar and Wasim have fantastic ODI records. In 262 matches, Waqar has picked up 416 wickets at 23.84 and an economy of 4.68. Wasim Akram, on the other hand, has represented Pakistan in 356 ODIs and picked up 502 wickets at 23.52.

Wasim
Wasim
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Hurts to see Pakistan perform like this – Wasim Akram

Former pacer and bowling legend Wasim Akram has slammed the functioning of the game in Pakistan in his interaction with cricket.com.au. Akram was critical about the methods adopted by the PCB and went on to say that currently, the game was literally down the drains in Pakistan. Akram’s statement emerges after another horrible outing for Pakistan in an ICC event. Pakistan last qualified for a semi-final of an ICC event way back in 2012.

 

“Whatever happened in this T20 World Cup for Pakistan it was writing on the wall,” Akram told cricket.com.au. “They didn’t see it four years ago when Pakistan made the semi-finals in Sri Lanka in 2012, but it was meant to happen. “Our first-class structure is down the drain, nobody puts money in there, nobody’s bothering. “And they want to win World Cups – you can’t win World Cups like this, I’m sorry,” said a disgusted Akram.

 

“It’s a tournament. A team prepares itself for three to four years; they plan, they prepare, they pick the right combination. “But we just go by our instinct and go ‘OK, there’s a World Cup next month, hopefully, we’ll win’. That’s what we do in Pakistan,” Akram said.

 

Akram also added that Pakistan should have at least qualified for the semi-finals. “You go to a World Cup and I’m a commentator and I’m a Pakistani and want Pakistan team to do well,” he said. “Winning the World T20 would be the icing on the cake, but, at least, qualify for the semis. Of course, it hurts. Big time. “Not just to me but every Pakistani. It doesn’t matter if you’re living in Pakistan or living abroad, it hurts.”

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Wasim Akram lashes out at PCB for Asia Cup probe

Former Pakistan captain and legendary fast bowler Wasim Akram has slammed the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) for announcing a probe into Pakistan’s debacle in the Asia Cup.

Akram, who is now a full-time commentator and a Bowling coach with the Kolkata Knight Riders, has slammed the formation of an inquiry committee by the PCB to probe the team’s poor performance in the Asia Cup held in Bangladesh.

“I don’t understand the purpose of announcing a probe committee when the national team is due to leave for India for the World T20,” Akram said in a news conference on Saturday.

Akram, who was involved in the Pakistan Super League as the director of the Islamabad United franchise, said that such an inquiry would only put pressure on the players and that the board should instead support the team ahead of the World T20.

“I don’t agree with this thinking. This decision of the Pakistan Cricket Board to evaluate the team’s performance in the Asia Cup at this time,” he continued.

“It does not make sense as the World T20 is just a few days away.”

The fast bowling legend expressed his support for captain Shahid Afridi and said the 35-year old all-rounder is the ideal man for the role at the moment.

“Shahid Afridi has been playing for 20 years. We all know him well and his performances. He is the best man to lead the team even now. He just needs to be given full backing and support by everyone,” he added.

Akram also lashed out at the criticism directed at the Pakistan team after their disappointing performance in the Asia Cup.

“The team has been struggling in T20 cricket for a while now but we need to show more understanding and respect for the players who are already under a lot of pressure,” the former Pakistan captain said.

When asked whether he would like to be involved in an official capacity for the Pakistan National side, he said: “I am ready to serve Pakistan cricket but I need to be given a proper time table. I can’t be asked at the 11th hour to come in. I work according to a schedule. I am ready to work in any capacity but first someone needs to offer me a proper role.”

 

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