Yasir Shah, a leading Test leg-spin bowler, has admitted that the spinners will have their work cut out in their tour of Australia later this year due to the absence of Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz. He was talking to the media after the end of first day’s play of the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy at the UBL Sports Complex.
“Our World Test Championship begins with us facing Australia on their home turf where the spinners don’t usually get the assistance from the surfaces. So, the youngsters, especially the fast bowlers, playing in the domestic circuit should use this opportunity to make a case for themselves for selection in the World Test Championship squad,” said Shah. He also said that the team will have to play with an aggressive mindset in Australia if it is to stand a chance down under.
“We will have to change our mindset and play aggressive cricket in Australia because you get in trouble if you don’t play on the offensive there,” said Shah.
On the lack of spinners among the leading wicket takers in the preceding QeA Trophy seasons, the 33-year-old veteran said that the PCB should pay attention towards the leg-spinners and should look to inculcate more of them in the domestic circuit.
While he admitted that the left-arm spinners were in abundance, he said that there was a lack of leg spinners in the domestic circuit.
When asked if he is fully fit, Shah said: “I am not carrying any injury at the moment. We have worked extensively hard in the training camp in the last 20-25 days which is now paying off. I bowled 32 overs today and didn’t feel any cramps either.”
Amidst the speculations of appointing a spin-bowling consultant for the national team, Shah said: “It’d be best for us if we have a spin-bowling coach with us. Mushi Bhai [Mushtaq Ahmed] has worked a lot with me on my bowling action. I think having a spin bowling coach would be really great for youngsters as well.”
He was, however, brave enough to admit that sometimes, a foreign spin-bowling coach can do the opposite because of the communication gap.
“With foreign spin bowling coaches, there is always a chance of communication gap. Sometimes, we can’t explain our views to them and sometimes, they cannot do the same for us. So, I feel that having a local spin bowling coach is a much better choice,” Shah said.
When asked whether the Pakistan Cricket Board’s decision of using the Kookaburra balls for this season has had any impact on his bowling, Shah said: “Bowling with Kookaburra is no hassle for spin bowlers since we play our international cricket with them.”
The spinner also payed tribute to Abdul Qadir and said: “His demise is a huge loss for our youngsters. He was a legend. It is very unfortunate for the upcoming generation that won’t get to learn from him as we did.”