Wasim Akram was one of the best white-ball bowlers of his time. He picked up a mammoth 502 wickets which is the second most (behind Muttiah Muralitharan – 534 wickets) by any bowler in the history of ODI cricket. He was equally skilled to bowl at any point in an ODI game. Be it at the start with the new ball, in the middle or at the death when the ball was reversing. The left-arm pacer was a master and one of the most lethal bowlers of his time.
He would’ve been a very effective T20 bowler, given the way he bowled in 50-over cricket. Akram could make the batsmen dance to his tunes and it was very hard to get him away. He had an excellent yorker, a deceptive slower one and a good bumper. Moreover, he could move the ball both ways to both the new and old ball.
However, he could play a mere five T20 games in his career and all of them came in England during his County stint with Hampshire. The Lahore-born picked up eight wickets in those five games at a strike-rate of 14.2.
Thus, when he was asked by ESPNCricinfo in an interview how he would bowl to modern-day greats like Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni, the 53-year-old explained every minute detail.
Would’ve bowled awayswingers from around the wicket to Virat Kohli: Akram
Virat Kohli is certainly one of the best batsmen in the modern era across all three formats. Time and again, he has stood up and has scored runs for fun. He is extremely consistent. However, he has had problems outside the stump over the years. Thus, Akram admitted that if the ball was reversing, he would go around the wicket and bowl awayswingers to India’s captain.
“It depends on the pitch, on the conditions. If it is reverse-swinging, I would have been comfortable. I probably would have gone around the wicket to Virat and just bowled these awayswingers from the middle,” Akram was quoted saying by ESPNCricinfo.
Outswing yorkers to Dhoni
MS Dhoni will go down as one of the best finishers in white-ball cricket. He has delivered on multiple occasions for India over the last 15 years. He had finished multiple games and has taken his team home. However, Akram revealed that he would bowl out swinging yorkers to the former Indian skipper else he would play the helicopter and dispatch him over midwicket.
“For Dhoni – I would have bowled outswing yorkers, not inswing. Because if anyone bowled inswing to him, he would have gone with his famous helicopter shot. With the away swinger, I have a chance. Probably he would have top-edged,” Akram explained in the same interview.
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