‘Little margin of error for Yasir against Cook and Root’
Mushtaq Ahmed, Pakistan's bowling coach, on Friday (July 22) said legspinner Yasir Shah bowled too quickly on the opening day of the second Test against England at Old Trafford in Manchester, and paid the price for it.
Shah leaked 111 runs off his wicketless 31 overs on Day 1 as England cruised to 314 for 4, with Alastair Cook and Joe Root notching up respective centuries.
"I think the ball wasn't coming nicely from his hand," Ahmed said at the end of the day's play. "On a first-day pitch the margin of error for a legspinner against good players like Joe Root and Cook is very small.
"I always believe as a good bowler you have to bowl good overs against good players to get them out. He didn't do that today but he will come out (to bowl) tomorrow, he's a strong guy."
Shah, who was the Man of the Match at Lord's where Pakistan beat England by 75 runs, had bagged 10 wickets and rose to the top of the ICC Rankings for Bowlers in Tests. "Sometimes the expectation does put you under pressure," explained Ahmed.
Mohammad Amir was the pick of the bowlers for Pakistan on the opening day in Manchester though, returning with figures of 2 for 63, which included the scalps of the England openers - Cook and Alex Hales. However, the reception from the Old Trafford crowd was more hostile than what he had received at Lord's. A section of the crowd yelled 'no-ball' every time he was in his delivery stride.
It was a warning that Cook had given Pakistan before the start of the series, but Ahmed feels the left-arm pacer is strong enough to deal with it.
"He handled them very well. He's a mature guy and just focuses on his bowling," he said.