Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Pakistan left-arm seamer Mohammad Amir has revealed that he was given a massive wake-up call when he made his international comeback in 2016.
Amir, who was banned for five years in 2010 for his involvement in a spot-fixing scandal that shocked the cricketing world, admitted that the game changed a lot during the time he was suspended.
He pointed out that the sport became more “batting-friendly” and noted that he had to work on his variations when he returned.
“When I started in 2009 cricket was different. The game was slow compared to now and the conditions used to suit the bowlers. But now it is mostly batting-friendly,” he was quoted as saying by Cricfrenzy. “Cricket is tough for a bowler now. I think as a bowler, [one] has to learn new things to survive.
“Variations with the white ball are important. You cannot depend on only one of your stock deliveries. Cricket, especially in ODIs now, has two balls being used in a game. The balls do not get old and make things easy for the batsmen.
“The ball doesn’t reverse, the slow ball doesn’t grip. So you need to have variations if you are a bowler, cricket is tough with the white ball now.
“I began to concentrate on developing my variations was when I made my comeback in 2016 because by that time, the franchise T20 leagues had become popular. The games are high-scoring now. So I had thought on my return that I have to learn new things. It can be a slower [ball], a wide yorker or a slow bouncer.
“If you are predictable as a bowler in current cricket, then you are giving away 10 to 12 runs in an over. You will only be safe if you have variations. Like Wasim bhai (Wasim Akram) says, he is still learning cricket. You need to learn new skills regularly if you want to [survive] for long in cricket.”