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A pacer who can match Akhtar's speed!

A Kashmiri pacer who bowls as fast as Pakistani speedster is knocking at the doors of Team India and might be picked for the coming ODI series.

india Updated: Mar 16, 2006 10:53 IST

A Kashmiri pacer who bowls as fast as Pakistani speedster Shoaib Akhtar is knocking at the doors of Team India and if all goes well he might be considered for the coming one-day series against England.

Twenty-year-old fast bowler Abid Nabi, a resident of Sonawar near Srinagar, impressed the national selectors with his bowling at the nets in Mohali during the second cricket test against England.

Standing at six feet two inches, the youngster is at present working on his physical fitness and running techniques under the guidance of coach Greg Chappell, bio-mechanist Ian Frazer and trainer Gregory Allen King.

Abid bowls at a speed of 140-145 km per hour which is as fast as any quick bowlers in international cricket.

Talking to UNI, his father Ghulam Nabi said he had always discouraged and at times even stopped his son from playing cricket.

"He had a passion for cricket right from his childhood and liked nothing else but playing with the bat and the ball. I wanted him to study hard and get into a government service. But, he wanted to do something in cricket and earn a name for himself," said Ghulam Nabi, a mason by profession.

"I was not earning too much...Had a limited money which I could not have even thought of spending on his playing cricket. Till he was in seventh standard, I tried to dissuade him in whatever way I could - sometimes by scolding him and sometimes with love and affection. But, finally we gave up," Ghulam Nabi added.

Ghulam Nabi said he did not want Abid a son of a mason to dream big and then get disappointed. "But he has proved us all wrong."

Abid's mother Hajra Begum said he used to play cricket for the whole day and never listened to them.

"He used to play cricket everytime. We were very much angry with his attitude and non-stop cricket. Abid used to tell us that cricket is life for him and if he succeeds in cricket, he would succeed in life," she added.

Hajra Begum said Abid did not appear twice in 10+2 examinations because of cricket.

Abid, whose idol is legendary cricketer Kapil Dev, was busy with North Zone in Deodhar Trophy when he got the call from Bhupinder Singh senior, one of the national selectors.

And the day is not too far when Abid would play for Team India which has a number of swing bowlers, but lacks a genuine fast bowler.

First Published: Mar 14, 2006 19:39 IST