Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Veteran England pace bowler James Anderson has made a bold claim by saying that Haseeb Hameed is a better opening batsman that Alastair Cook.
Hameed, 20, made his Test debut during England’s tour of India in November last year and had an impact right away as he scored two half-centuries. However, his strong start to the series was cut short by a finger injury, which forced him to return home and undergo surgery.
Hameed was once again struck on the hand while representing Lancashire against Cambridge MCCU and retired hurt on seven runs.
But, after scans cleared him of any serious injuries, the Bolton native is set to play alongside Anderson when Lancashire take on Essex in the County Championship on Friday.
“His ability and his talent is frightening for such a young lad, so I think he’ll cope with anything,” Anderson said. “He’s right up there.
“I know Cookie is the leading run-scorer – but I’d say he is a better, more technically sound opening batsman than Cook.
“I don’t want to talk him up too much – he’s bound to have the worst year of his life if I do! But yes, I think he’s just a very exciting talent.”
Should Hameed be picked for the Ashes against Australia later this year, Anderson is confident that the youngster will excel.
“I’m sure they will throw everything they’ve got at him – certainly with pace, short balls, aggression, verbals – I’m sure they’ll go at him,” he said. “They usually pick on the young guys – but with his calm nature, I think he’ll be able to handle it.”