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Tait can scare Indians, says Akhtar

Pakistani speedster Shoaib Akhtar urges the Australians to pick Shaun Tait for the upcoming series against India.

cricket Updated: Dec 16, 2007 18:28 IST

Pakistani speedster Shoaib Akhtar has urged the Australians to pick Shaun Tait for the upcoming Test series against India as the slinger would be a scary proposition for Anil Kumble's men on the quick tracks here.

"The Australians must pick Shaun Tait. I'm telling you, the Indians will be scared of him. They're not comfortable with pace at all," Akhtar told the 'Sunday Telegraph'.

Tait, whose action was questioned by the visiting New Zealand team in the ongoing Chappell-Hadlee series, could make the cut for the series against India if the selectors opt for an all-pace attack.

India take on Ricky Ponting's men in a four-Test series starting December 26 here and Akhtar felt the hosts will need to prepare quick and bouncy tracks to shake up the formidable batting line-up of the visiting side.

"If the Aussies make nice quick pitches, they will be jumping all over the place," he said.

Akhtar, who was rendered ineffective in the recently-concluded three-Test series against India due to ill-health and placid tracks, felt the game was loaded heavily in favour of the batsmen and called on the administrators to give a thought to the bowlers' plight.

"Cricket has become so boring. I don't like the regulations in the game. Too many rules. You can't bowl like the days of Bodyline," he said.

"The bowlers do not have enough power in the game. We can't bowl as many bouncers as we'd like. People want to see a good fight between bat and ball. This is very important for the health of cricket," Akhtar added.

The flamboyant Pakistani bowler felt that even average batsmen were piling up runs due to batting-friendly pitches.

"Why can't we give batsmen a hard time? Cricket now belongs to the batsmen. India scored over 600 against us the other day. It's boring.

"I see average batsmen getting huge scores and so many guys are getting 6000 and 7000 runs in Tests," he complained.

On Australia grooming Michael Clarke as a future captain, Akhtar felt the right-hander still had miles to go before being a worthy successor to Ricky Ponting.

Akhtar said promoting Clarke ahead of vice-captain Adam Gilchrist was unfair on the veteran wicketkeeper-batsman.

"For me, he (Clarke) still has a lot to prove in the Australian side. They keep mentioning him as a future captain but it is nonsense to announce him like this," he said.

"To make him captain over Adam Gilchrist in the Twenty20 game, this can irritate the senior players. Adam is entitled to be angry," he added.

The pacer also said that the burden of captaincy may actually end up ruining the left-hander's career.

"There is too much pressure on Clarke. He's having to act like a captain but he's not a captain. What happens if he struggles as a batsman in the next 10 Tests and is dropped, what then? I think Gilchrist deserves more respect," he said.