September 20, 2012

Pakistan cricket

Has Afridi lost his touch?

Abhishek Mukherjee

Shahid Afridi isn't the same effective bowler that he was in the 2009 World Twenty20, Shoaib Naveed writes in the Dawn. This, he reckons, is due to Afridi's inability to get drift into his deliveries, and that is probably because his back isn't holding up.

The back, due to its pronounced swivel during the spinner’s pivot (as explained) is of greatest importance when it comes to creating drift. It is the major reason why Afridi’s potency has seen a downward trend over the last year or so. The all-rounder has been sporting niggles in his back and side for quite some time now (the keener observers might have picked up on it while seeing him do his normal ground fielding). His aerial catching, diving and throwing (all aspects that keep the back in one plane) remain impressive, but the veteran star is often reluctant when he has to bend down to pick up the simpler rolling ball.

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