‘Gets breakthroughs at crucial times’ – Zaheer Khan on Mohammed Shami
By SMCS - Dec 23, 2021 1:20 pm
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Former India pace spearhead Zaheer Khan has a great record in South Africa, where he had picked up 30 wickets from eight Test matches. Moreover, his spells of 4/88 in Johannesburg 2013, and 3/36 in Durban 2010 are two of the best bowling figures by an Indian pace bowler in South Africa. And prior to the first Test between India and South Africa on Sunday, he feels that the pitches in the country will give a hard time to the Indian pace bowlers.

Zaheer Khan

“When you are playing in Johannesburg, you have the challenge of adjusting to the altitude (1,753 m). That’s one challenge every bowler has to face. The high altitude tests your fitness. Apart from that, fast bowlers really enjoy bowling in SA because there is always something in their pitches for them right through the Test. I am sure our bowlers will relish the challenge,” Zaheer Khan told Hindustan Times.

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He also mentioned that Mohammed Shami is a ‘game-changing bowler’. Shami’s first tour of South Africa in 2013 was Zaheer Khan’s last tour as well, where Khan had mentored the young Bengal pacer. Eight years later, Shami has become one of the key players of India’s pace bowling attack. In fact, the last time India toured South Africa, Shami had scalped a five-wicket haul, finishing with 5/28 and played a key role in India’s only win in the Test series as well.

Mohammed Shami

“Watching his success gives me a great high. His journey has been fantastic; in fact, all Indian pacers have developed into fine bowlers. Shami has got a terrific record and is one of the leaders of the pack. The best part about him is that he provides crucial breakthroughs at crucial times,” added Zaheer Khan.

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“He is a game-changing bowler. I have always judged myself as well as other bowlers on the ability to prise out 2-3 important wickets in a spell that can potentially change the game. Shami has that ability. Not surprisingly, he is an important part of our world-class pace attack,” concluded Zaheer Khan.