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Thread: Zaheer is Mentally Lazy - Bruce Reid

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    International Captain masterblaster's Avatar
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    Zaheer is Mentally Lazy - Bruce Reid

    'Zaheer is mentally lazy' - Bruce Reid

    Wisden Cricinfo staff

    September 16, 2004





    Bruce Reid, among others, believes that Zaheer Khan's problems are self-inflicted AFP



    Bruce Reid, who advised India's fast bowlers during their tour of Australia last year, has come down heavily on Zaheer Khan, blaming his frequent injuries on laziness. Zaheer shot to fame during the Champions Trophy four years ago in a game against Australia, but his career has been punctuated by injuries ever since.

    "Zaheer's a wonderful bowler," Reid told The Indian Express. "But he is mentally lazy and, after the World Cup euphoria, slipped into a comfort zone. Then these young guys, [Lakshmipathy] Balaji and [Irfan] Pathan, came along and he failed to respond to the pressure."

    While praising Pathan and Balaji, Reid let on that Zaheer was important to the team, and that everyone had tried to guide him, but to no avail. "He needs to lose weight and get fitter. He didn't do enough running. When you return from injury you have to endure pain. There is not a single day when a fast bowler does not feel pain. Everyone of us the coach, the captain, the physios, the trainers, former players have spoken to him, but to no avail. He was the toughest to train. Zaheer needs to show his character now."

    He rated India's bowling attack behind Australia's and England's, saying they had the rare ability to swing the ball consistently. Pathan's natural ability and Balaji's discipline came in for mention from Reid, who believed they had the right stuff for the future. "They swing the ball well. Especially Irfan Pathan, who at 20 is exceptional, but he has a long way to go. He has a natural wrist action and he swings the ball prodigiously. He still needs to find some pace, though. And that is where he could lose his way. The faster he finds out his limit, the better for him."

    Reid said that Balaji was "a very good learner and a very disciplined bowler. I changed his bowling run up in Australia pace, not length and he responded brilliantly to it even in Pakistan, bowling interesting angles. He came on brilliantly carrying a major load in the absence of the seniors."

    While the fast bowlers did have the right ingredients, they were not putting the ball in the right place. Confirming the suspicions of every Indian cricket fan, Reid said that Ajit Agarkar and Ashish Nehra bowled a few unplayable balls every over, but spoiled the effect by bowling a lose delivery. "Ajit takes an over to hit his straps and that, in international cricket, is not acceptable. Ashish also needs to be more ruthless in not giving away runs.

    "We took some statistics of Agarkar and they showed that his first ball is almost always hit for a four. So we are trying to find out how we can get that to be a dot ball instead. Maybe he needs a bouncer or a yorker to begin with."

    Wisden Cricinfo Ltd

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    Completely hits the nail on the head for me, and with Bruce Reid having some sort of input into this Indian side, it'll be good for the development of the Indian bowlers.

    Its good that Bruce is paying attention to trends involving Ajit Agarkar and Ashish Nehra, because with those two we have two natural match winners with the ball, but their not utilising their talents.

    Regarding Zaheer, Bruce definitely hit the nail on the head.
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    World Traveller Craig's Avatar
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    So it is attitude problems for Zaheer Khan and inconsistentcy for Ashish Nehra and AA, which doesn't inspire much confidence in me if I were an Indian fan (alas I'm not).

    Personally Zaheer, Nehra, AA, and Bhalji need to get consistentcy into their game for their attack to be of top class.
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    quite true
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    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Craig
    So it is attitude problems for Zaheer Khan and inconsistentcy for Ashish Nehra and AA, which doesn't inspire much confidence in me if I were an Indian fan (alas I'm not).

    Personally Zaheer, Nehra, AA, and Bhalji need to get consistentcy into their game for their attack to be of top class.
    Is that Balaji or Bhajji (Harbhajan).
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    International Coach biased indian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by masterblaster
    We took some statistics of Agarkar and they showed that his first ball is almost always hit for a four. So we are trying to find out how we can get that to be a dot ball instead. Maybe he needs a bouncer or a yorker to begin with.
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    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    I had noticed that - it's just the proverbial slippery slope.
    Though I'm amazed it's a case of almost always.

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    Cricket Web Staff Member / Global Moderator Neil Pickup's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by masterblaster
    We took some statistics of Agarkar and they showed that his first ball is almost always hit for a four. So we are trying to find out how we can get that to be a dot ball instead. Maybe he needs a bouncer or a yorker to begin with.
    Turn it into a big wide.
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    State Vice-Captain aussie_beater's Avatar
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    Those are very good observations. The inconsistency of the Indian pacers has been a perennial problem. That's what was Srinath's undoing when he had the makings of one of the best pacers of his time. If Zaheer lacks in commitment too, that's very serious because he is young and has a big career in front of him if he puts the right amount of hard work and commitment to his game. Hopefully all the bowlers that Bruce mentions here will take this as positive feedback and work on it.
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    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Trouble is so many Indian players in the past have taken this sort of feedback as a personal insult and refused to take any sort of affirmative action.

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    State Vice-Captain aussie_beater's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard
    Trouble is so many Indian players in the past have taken this sort of feedback as a personal insult and refused to take any sort of affirmative action.
    Yes I see your point. and that attitude needs to change if India has to become a top force in cricket because constructive criticism needs to be given its due without thinking negatively like it has happened in most cases till now.

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    Cricketer Of The Year Arjun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard
    Trouble is so many Indian players in the past have taken this sort of feedback as a personal insult and refused to take any sort of affirmative action.
    The problem is that there is too much advice, but too little application. Look at what experts are telling Zaheer- shorten your run-up, shorten your jump, try to swing the ball off a full length, move the ball short, dot dot dot... But it left him following al of this advice without any improvement. He should just do what's best for him. The man who knows what's best is definitely Bruce Reid- Zaheer should listen to him and nobody else, since his 5/95 in Australia came with Reid's work.
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    International Debutant Waughney's Avatar
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    'Zaheer is mentally lazy' - Bruce Reid
    Yes, he certainly has a lot of work to do.
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    U19 Cricketer maxpower's Avatar
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    yes he does feel to give less effort mentally and is rattled quite easily
    OH HE HATE ME

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    School Boy/Girl Captain from_da_lost_di's Avatar
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    to me zahir was never a bowler ...
    balaji comes good only once in a blue moon ..
    the only person even consider a bowler is irfan phathan !!
    this guy can swing the ball ..
    the fact that he bowls with his left arm also works in his advantage !!

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    School Boy/Girl Captain from_da_lost_di's Avatar
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    and BTW...
    ther are irfan phathans found in every galli of pakistan !!

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