BENGALURU: Coaches always advise bowlers to make batsmen play, especially in the longer formats. That’s one way of inducing errors. Jharkhand’s left-arm spinner Shahbaz Nadeem is an example. With 370 wickets in 98 first-class matches, he is one of the consistent performers in domestic cricket. Nadeem believes in bowling wicket-to-wicket. His dismissals are mostly leg-before and bowled. After IPL 2018, he has featured in five first-class matches for 18 wickets, eight of them either bowled or leg-before.
On the first day of the match against Australia A, he took two wickets, both bowled. “Generally the kind of wickets we played on in the last few matches, there was no great help for spinners. So I bowled at the stumps. When I am playing in any competition, bowling stump-to-stump comes naturally to me. The idea is to bowl on the stumps and let the batsmen err,” said the spinner born in Bokaro.
On Saturday, Nadeem looked in control. His methods bore fruit as the 29-year-old dismissed Kurtis Patterson and Peter Handscomb. Bowling stump- to-stump might not always fetch wickets, but if there is pressure from one end, bowlers can take advantage. Though Nadeem is comfortable bowling tight lines, he realises the importance of not becoming predictable.
When Australia A skipper Mitchell Marsh looked to cut loose in the final session by coming down the track against spinners, Nadeem dragged a few deliveries wide, as if to send a message ‘don’t leave the crease’. Despite a decent show by the India A bowlers in the first two sessions, the visitors ended the day on a respectable note. From 180/6, Marsh and Michael Neser dominated the final session to frustrate the home team. email@example.com
Australia A 290/6 (Mitchell Marsh 86 n.o, Travis Head 68, Kurtis Patterson 48, Michael Nesar 44 n.o, Shahbaz Nadeem 2/64, Kuldeep Yadav 2/68) vs India A.