Tuesday December 05, 2023

Back-up bowlers not making best use of talent: Sarfraz

August 22, 2023

ISLAMABAD: Former Test fast bowler Sarfraz Nawaz has pointed out some glaring faults in run-up and delivery strides of back-up fast bowlers, suggesting them to adopt remedial measures to fully utilise their talent.

Talking to 'The News' on telephone from Lahore following a few days of sessions with the leading back-up bowlers, Sarfraz said that most of the bowlers’ landing at the wicket and follow up is not up to the mark. “They required mark adjustments in delivery of the ball and in follow up position. Unless and until they work on the remedial measures, it will be difficult for them to fully utilise their talent," he said.

When questioned as to what basically was wrong with the delivery and landing at the crease, Sarfraz said that the majority of these bowlers were unable to make full use of the front foot. “They are not putting their landing foot in a proper way and are often seen sliding towards the opposite side of the crease.

The proper way is to keep your foot straight and make the best use of the landing approach. There is a requirement to take maximum benefits from the landing foot. For that you need strong legs and proper training.

Fast bowlers’ weakness also lies in the follow up which tends to go on the opposite side of the pitch. The follow up should be straight and powerful. That is how you take maximum benefits from your abilities to bowl fast and accurately.”

Sarfraz said he worked on leading back-up fast bowlers in presence of PCB coaches Rao Iftikhar and Aizaz Cheema. “There is a need to guide the upcoming fast bowlers at the right age. These leading bowlers have been playing Pakistan Super League (PSL) and other events for years now, yet no efforts were made to correct their run-up,” he added.

Bowlers who went under scrutiny included Khurram Shahzad, Mohammad Ilyas, Hunain Shah, Sameen Gul and Arshad Iqbal. “Some of Peshawar based bowlers were given on-line tips while those present in Lahore were guided on spot,” he said.

Sarfraz also plans to guide and help women cricketers. “Women cricketers are busy preparing for the series against South Africa in Karachi. They will be given on-line coaching. I have conveyed it to Mohsin Kamal (women cricketers coach) to coordinate,” said Sarfraz.

“I am planning to extend my stay in Pakistan to work on women cricketers’ bowling action. Hopefully, with a bit of guidance, these women fast bowlers would be in a position to perform better,” Sarfraz said.

Women cricketers like Fatima Sana, Aaimna Anwar, Syeda Masoom Zafar, Iram Javed and Aliya Rashid are expected to benefit from Sarfraz's expertise.