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Adams to counter Indian batsmen

Having got into the side after a long hiatus, leg-spinner Paul Adams is devising strategies to contain the Indian batsmen when the two sides meet in a tri-series match on Friday.

india Updated: Apr 16, 2003 15:49 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India

Having got into the side after a long hiatus, leg-spinner Paul Adams, who suddenly finds himself a key member of the inexperienced South African bowling attack, is devising strategies to contain the Indian batsmen when the two sides meet in a TVS Cup tri-series match on Friday.

"All you have to do is to keep it simple. Bowl at the right areas and hope that the batsman makes a mistake," said Adams, who was not in the team for South Africa's first match against India which the latter won by 153 runs last weekend.

Despite his team earning reputation for being a good fast bowling side over the years, Adams said as a spinner he was confident of coming out successful against India.

"A spinner needs a bit of confidence. Its all a question of confidence and bowling according to the situation. I just try and stick to the basics," said the bowler with a very unorthodox action.

The bowler, who returned to the team after a long injury lay-off, replaced spinner Robin Peterson in the match against Bangladesh and finished with one for 42 in 10 overs.

Adams rated Indian master blaster Sachin Tendulkar as the best batsman in the world and said no bowler can tie him down because he has "such an amazing range of shots".

"Its not easy to bowl to him because he hits the good balls to the boundary. You never know where to pitch the ball to him."

Adams said despite the long break he had matured to handle the pressure at international level.

"Every spinner matures with age and learns with every match. I feel I am a much better bowler now and will keep improving if I get the opportunities," he said in an interview here.

The post-World Cup transition phase in South Africa has meant that the team has a relatively inexperienced bowling attack, barring Shaun Pollock and Makhaya Ntini, and Adams sees this as the biggest opportunity to establish himself as a regular member of the sqaud by picking up wickets.

"Every team goes through a transition phase. We have to all stick together and back each other at this stage. Till we get the experience, the senior players have to guide the youngsters and spread the knowledge," the diminutive spinner said.

The 26-year-old Adams felt the new captain Graeme Smith had the capability of leading the South African resurgence and said having played with Smith for the same state will be a big help for him.

"Graeme is a positive character and has new ideas. He strongly believes that he can do the job for the country. He is also a hard-working guy, so we all have to support him," he said.

"We must nor panic if we lose a few matches at this stage. The South African public don't like the team losing. But everybody must be patient," he said.

Adams, who was not in the World Cup squad because of the back injury which kept him out of cricket for nearly five months, said the bitter memories of the World Cup was behind the team now.

"I think playing at home put too much pressure on the team during the World cup and it could not recover after the defeat in the very first match. When we did badly, panic buttons were pushed and a lot of negative things were being written. I think that affected the team," he said.

Terming late Hansie Cronje as the best South African captain he had played under, Adams said it was good learning experience for players who played with him.

"Guys who have played under him have learnt a lot."

Adams, whose peculiar bowling style often baffles the batsmen, said he had been bowling with a "funny" action since his childhood and had no intentions of changing his style now.

"Many people find my action a bit funny. But that's how I have been bowling since my childhood. Some of the coaches tried to change it, but I am comfortable with this action."

First Published: Apr 16, 2003 15:49 IST