ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 / News
World Cup 2011
Shahzad backs Anderson to perform
March 22, 2011
Injured seamer Ajmal Shahzad is backing England team-mate James Anderson to rediscover his best form, insisting that "all it takes is one game for him to turn it around".
Anderson has looked a shadow of the bowler who claimed 24 wickets during the Ashes triumph in Australia, sending down numerous wides and failing to adapt to the sub-continent conditions in the tournament so far.
However, Shahzad believes Anderson, who was dropped for England's must-win match against West Indies last week, will get through his "difficult" time and reproduce the form he showed to earlier in the winter.
"He has found it a little bit difficult," Shahzad told Sky Sports. "I don't think it's because of tiredness, India and Bangladesh are very difficult places to play cricket. You don't get much with the ball, you've got to rely on your skills and you've got be firing.
"Jimmy's been finding it a little bit difficult and it mentally drains you a little bit. I've seen him in the nets, I know what he's capable of doing, he's one of the best bowlers England have produced. We all saw what he did in the Ashes, all it takes is one game for him to turn it around, for it to click and I hope he does that when he gets another chance."
Shahzad's participation at the World Cup was cut short due to a hamstring strain and, although he is making great strides in his recovery, he admits he was "gutted" to leave the tournament prematurely.
"It's getting there," he said. "I haven't really tested it out yet but it's good to get a few days off and a bit of rest and hopefully I'll be fit and fighting in the next couple of weeks. I am very gutted, because obviously it is the biggest stage of the world, playing against the best teams and the best players and I wanted to show what I had to offer."
When asked whether his injury was a reflection of how much cricket is played or just bad luck, he said: "Probably a little bit of both. We played a lot of cricket over the winter - the Ashes was magnificent and then the ODIs were a little bit tougher. Then to go into a World Cup on the back of that was a little bit difficult but the lads knew what was coming up and we knew we had to pace ourselves.
"There have been a few niggles and injuries but I think they've come about from the guys putting in 110% in all the games we've played. I guess it's been frustrating for all the lads."
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