Former Pakistan speedster, ‘Rawalpindi Express’ Shoaib Akhtar has expressed excitement and thrill in seeing Jofra Archer perform so well in the second Test match at Lords against Australia. He cautioned against over bowling the quickie.
Akhtar went to stress upon the fact that Archer can be prone to back injuries if his workload won’t be looked into seriously. His suggestion was to play him in fewer matches which would keep him mentally and physically fit as his action and style of bowling can make him prone to back injuries very soon.
“After a long time, a lethal fast bowler has come into the scene. Chris Jordon brought him from Barbados and told him to play for England. There’s a contract within the England management that the player who does not abide by the team rules, then the ECB and management decides whether the player can come into the side or not,” Akhtar said in a video posted by him on YouTube.
There’s no better way to curb batsmen like Smith than by bouncing him out
The former Pakistan fast bowler heaped praises on the 24-year old’s approach against Steve Smith. He felt that on current form there is the only way to dismantle and disrupt Smith’s rhythm- by bouncing him out. He was thrilled at the way Archer used the bouncer to such good effect against the Aussie stalwart.
“He is an express fast bowler. There’s just one way to dismantle Smith, that is to bowl bouncers. Smith has a habit of moving around the crease, so there was no way of curbing the batsman than bowling bouncers to him. Archer tested Smith by bowling at his upper body,” the former pacer said.
When the lethal speed sensation nailed the Aussie batsman on his elbow, he was shaky. But once he was hit on the neck, he was visibly taken aback by the brutality of the bouncer. That led to the batsman going off the field as a precautionary measure. He did although return to the crease and was dismissed on 92.
But the former Australian captain couldn’t take further part in the Test match as on day five he suffered a delayed concussion and history was made as the first time in 142 years of test match cricket, Marcus Labuschagne became the concussion substitute. And his brave and gritty 58 on the last day earned a lot of praise from all corners.
On how the Ashes series will proceed from here and what he felt about Archer’s reaction once he hit Smith on the neck, this is what he said, ‘’I think Ashes will now take a turn. I believe fast bowlers should bowl with more intensity now. I thought Archer should have gone up to Smith to check up on him as Smith got hit very badly on the neck. Archer should have sympathized,”
The five-match Ashes series stands at 1-0 in favor of Australia now. The next match starts on August 22nd at Headingley, Leeds. All eyes will be on the fitness of Steve Smith. Will he play or not?
~ Written by Raghav
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