Riaz working on new-ball skills

March 6, 2012 | Cricket, General

Wahab Riaz, the Pakistan fast bowler, has said he needs to work on mastering the ability to bowl with the new ball. He rued being only a fringe player in the England series but said he was working hard win to back his place.

Pakistan rely heavily on spinners in all formats, with only Umar Gul being the established fast bowler. Two young quick bowlers, Junaid Khan and Mohammad Talha, have been troubled by injury while Aizaz Cheema has done well enough to keep his place in the XI over Riaz.

One of Riaz’s strengths is his ability to obtain reverse-swing but with the use of new balls from each end in one-dayers, his effectiveness has been reduced. He is currently working with former fast-bowler Sarfraz Nawaz at the National Cricket Academy in Lahore. “I am working hard to get more control when bowling with the new ball,” Riaz said. “Unfortunately I didn’t get enough chances to bowl against England, but I am confident that I will be an improved bowler in the Asia Cup.”

Riaz, 26, had a memorable Test debut, taking a five-for against England in August 2010, and made a further impact in limited-overs cricket by collecting his maiden ODI five-for in the World Cup semi-final against India. He was included in the Pakistan squad against England in UAE but played only one ODI in which he was taken for 47 runs in seven wicket-less overs.


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