By successfully decoding the leg-spin of Yasir Shah, England have set an example of how to make a comeback against a spinner. Can it act as an inspiration for the West Indies batsmen, who are facing the same challenge against India’s R Ashwin?
Yasir will know how quickly things can change in cricket. The star of Pakistan’s win in the first Test at Lord’s, he had no clue in the following game at Manchester, played within a few days.
The leg-spinner had gone into the Manchester game confident that the England batsmen would be under pressure against him. At the end of the second Test, it’s Yasir’s confidence which had taken a beating. Joe Root and Alastair Cook had done their homework so well after the first game of the series, they were toying with the bowler. Yasir conceded more than 200 runs in the first innings and 53 in the nine overs he bowled in the second as England crushed Pakistan.
“England were a little subdued in the opening Test. They came out with a positive frame of mind in the second game, and Yasir didn’t know what to do,” former India spinner Maninder Singh said.
“After Yasir’s 10-wicket haul, England did their homework and came out attacking.”
Pakistan not only lost the game, Yasir lost his No 1 spot in the ICC ranking to R Ashwin, who came up with a match-winning haul in Antigua against West Indies.
Ashwin’s seven-wicket haul has also come in the first game of the series, so the West Indies batsmen’s response is awaited. Can they come up with a plan to counter him?