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Sunday, Dec 15, 2019

Pakistan has found a ‘tagda’ bowler: Shoaib Akhtar lauds teenage bowler, compares temperament to Virat Kohli

The young man gave a great glimpse of his temperament when he decided to stay back and continue with the side in the practice game even when he received the news of his mother passing away.

cricket Updated: Nov 19, 2019 16:10 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Shoaib Akhtar, Virat Kohli
Shoaib Akhtar, Virat Kohli(HT Collage)
         

16-year-old Naseem Shah is already hogging all the headlines in Australia and could well make his debut in the first Test at Brisbane. He impressed the pundits with his raw pace and ability to move the ball at a brisk clip owing to which he is generating tremendous interest ahead of the series. If he does get the nod, he will join a handful of others to debut at 16, including Indian legend Sachin Tendulkar.

The young man gave a great glimpse of his temperament when he decided to stay back and continue with the side in the practice game even when he received the news of his mother passing away.

ALSO READ: ‘We haven’t seen the best of him yet’: Ponting warns Aus ahead of Pak Tests

Former Pakistan pacer Shoaib Akhtar lauded the young man for taking such a gutsy call and compared him to Indian captain Virat Kohli, who too returned to play for Delhi one day after his father passed away.

 

He has only played seven first-class games and while selectors clearly like what they see, how he copes in the heat of battle over five days against world-class batsmen such as Steve Smith and David Warner remains to be seen.

“As a bowler I can say that Pakistan has found a solid [Tagda] fast bowler,” Akhtar said in his YouTube channel. “What I really like about Naseem Shah is that he understands how to bowl.

“To know how to bowl at this young age is amazing and its inbuilt in some – this is same as Mohammad Amir as when he come on to the scene in 2009,” he further added.

“I want to see a fast bowler who has a strong character and I know that every fast-bowler gets hit about in Australia but when you fight it out, you are also appreciated there,” Akhtar said.

However, Akhtar cautioned against put too much pressure on the young man and said that it will be interesting to see how the young man goes through tribulations of Test cricket and how he responds when put under pressure.

“We have to wait and then see how he responds when he puts under pressure, but I really wish him the best of luck. He has already shown a lot of courage by staying back despite the demise of his mother,” he said.