ICL: Indian Cricket League

Bond ready for difficult pitches in South Africa


bondNew Zealand fast bowler Shane Bond expects the pitches for the International Cricket Council (ICC) World Twenty20, just emerging from the South African winter, to be easy paced once the tournament gets underway on September 11.

“It’s quite difficult for the groundsmen to prepare pitches at this time of year and, as far as our practice facilities go, the wickets have been pretty flat and slow,” Bond said in Johannesburg.

The last time New Zealand played one-day cricket in South Africa was in October 2005 — in early summer and conditions should be fairly similar to now.

“Yeah, the last time I was here, the wickets were pretty easy paced and I expect them to be relatively slow now as well,” Bond said.

Bond was an outstanding performer during New Zealand’s ride to the World Cup semis in the Caribbean and he said he would bring the same combination of aggression and economy to the T20.

“You figure this game is even more stacked in favour of the batsmen, the boundaries keep getting shorter and shorter. But you still have to bowl aggressively and try to take wickets. Otherwise, if you go out there just trying to be defensive, you’re going to get smacked,” he explained.

“So you need to bowl (both) aggressively and defensively and you can’t allow the batsman to set himself. That can sometimes be difficult when you’ve got a hard-hitting batsman really coming at you, but then you need to use the bouncer. That gives you one dot ball per over. The bouncer has made a difference; it’s been a good thing to bring in to one-day cricket,” he added.

Bond also believes the expectation that the ICC World Twenty20 will basically be a shootout between the most destructive batsmen might allow bowlers to sneak into the limelight.

“There’s less pressure on the bowlers in some ways because they expect to get hit for six, the expectation is that the batsmen will win the game,” he explained.

Bond has not played since the World Cup, in which he took 13 wickets in eight matches and was the most economical bowler, but he said the southern winter was well spent.

Other than inspiring New Zealand to winning series and trophies, Bond said his personal goals were to reach the milestones of 100 Test wickets and 200 ODI wickets in the summer ahead.

Source:Cricket News

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