‘He winked and said ‘watch this!’’: How Wasim Akram schooled struggling Brett Lee, set 4-ball trap for Jacques Kallis
Brett Lee recalled an interesting episode involving Wasim Akram and how he took just four deliveries to get the better of renowned all-rounder Jacques Kallis while others, including the Australian, struggled.
The legendary Wasim Akram is regarded as one of the best swing bowlers the game has ever seen. Such was dominance that he went to scalp over 500 wickets in ODIs and currently stands as the second highest wicket-taker in the 50-over format behind Sri Lanka legend Muthiah Muralidaran. Apart from serving national duties for his country, the left-arm pacer has also been part of few coaching stint, and one of them was with the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR).
Brett Lee, who then played for KKR, recalled an interesting episode involving Akram and how he took just four deliveries to get the better of renowned all-rounder Jacques Kallis while others, including the Australian, struggled.
Narrating it on his YouTube channel Brett Lee TV, the former Australian pacer said he was preparing to bowl to Kallis during a nets session. It was then he enquired Akram how he would have approached Kallis, to which the former Pakistan captain said: “Try and shape the ball away, you may want to change the position of the seam there.”
Lee tried doing exactly as told but it was of no use as Kallis had no troubles knocking the deliveries. And not just Lee but other bowlers too struggled against Kallis.
“I am trying really hard to get Kallis out but this guy is going bang bang (Lee gestures with his hand how Kallis is middling everything with the full bat face). I could not get Jacques Kallis out. All our bowlers were struggling with a brand new ball on a brand new wicket, and Kallis was making it look so easy.”
It was then Akram decided to roll his arms as well and while others struggled the king of swing got the better of the former South Africa all-rounder in just five balls.
“He warms his shoulders up, He had sand shoes on, no spikes and I ask him, what are you going to do?”
“I will take four back in and one away,” Lee recalls Akram telling him. “I go what? That simple?”
The action starts with Kallis showing respect to Akram and he did the same in the following delivery. The came the changes as Akram swung the back into him but Kallis played it comfortably.
“The seam is now a fraction straighter and he swings the ball back in. Once again, same result, Jacques Kallis flat bats (it). As he walked back, he winked at me, and said ‘watch this!’ He turned the ball over and did that with the seam position (Lee shows how the seam is now pointing towards first slip), and took one away straight.”
“Nick and gone!”
“And I said, Mate! You are a genius!”
Lee, who vividly remembers the moment, further said: “We were bowling all day to get Jacques Kallis out and he does with exactly as he said four balls with no spikes on, uneven rubbers, and that sums up."