November 14, 2011

Unlike others, our commentary duo weren’t at a loss for words as they watched England being bamboozled by Akram in 1992

Wasim Akram is on fire as he takes Allan Lamb out, immediately before taking Chris Lewis’ wicket, Pakistan v England, World Cup final, Melbourne, 25 March, 1992

Stuart: 141 for 4 and Lamb and Fairbrother have rebuilt well here in the 1992 World Cup final.

Ash: They’ve dug in.

Stuart: Imran’s now turned to his strike bowler, Wasim Akram. I guess he’s looking for a wicket, Ash? This partnership is now worth 72.

Ash: Wasim’ll want to keep it tight.

Stuart: But he’s looking for wickets, surely?

Ash: Well, you know, keep it tight, build pressure. Wait for the batsman to make a mistake.

Stuart: Do you not expect something more than that from a bowler like Asif Wakram?

Ash: He wants to mix it up. Use his change-ups. Bowl a few slower bouncers. Back-of-the-hand deliveries, knuckle balls, cutters.

Stuart: I guess that’s modern one-day bowling.

Ash: He wants to take the pace off the ball. Give the batsman nothing to work with.

Stuart: Wasaq Asiram runs in and… Oh my!

Ash: Ooh, he’s got away with that one.

Stuart: Wasraf’s bowled an astonishing delivery there. Going round the wicket, he’s angled the ball into Allan Lamb’s pads. The batsman’s played straight, but the ball’s curved away, beaten the bat and knocked back the off stump.

Ash: Very lucky. Very lucky, indeed. If that ball hadn’t swung in that outrageous fashion, that would have surely been a single at least. Possibly two.

Stuart: But it did swing. It swung a lot.

Ash: But what if it didn’t, Stu? What if it didn’t? A single would have eased the pressure on the batsman.

Stuart: Well, I think that was pretty special bowling from Waqar Asimov.

Ash: We’ll agree to disagree here, Stu. I thought it was a shocking delivery.

Stuart: So Chris Lewis is the next batsman in. What’s Wameez Kamran going to try and do now? How’s he going to dismiss Lewis Chris?

Ash: He’s got to keep it tight. No more four-balls like that last one. No more easy runs for the batsman. The game’s going to get away from Pakistan if he keeps bowling like that.

Stuart: Wakram runs in and… Blimey!

Ash: Oh, this is shocking bowling. Just shocking.

Stuart: If anything, that delivery was even more astounding than the last.

Ash: He’s plumbing the depths here.

Stuart: When that ball left his hand, it looked for all the world like it was going to be an off-side wide.

Ash: His line’s all over the place.

Stuart: But it swung in a mile. Lou Isskriss stepped right across – we could see leg stump, in fact – and I don’t know if he was going to play a shot at first.

Ash: He was going to take the wide.

Stuart: As the ball swung in, he realised he had to play, but it was too late and I think the ball actually struck middle.

Ash: I’ve seen club cricketers bowl tighter lines than that.

Stuart: Lou Isskriss can’t believe what’s happened there. The last two deliveries have set off in completely different directions and yet both have ultimately arrived at the stumps, evading the bat en route.

Ash: Pakistan might as well just give up now if the lad’s going to carry on bowling like this.

Stuart: Why don’t you take a great big mouthful of battenburg, Ash?

Courtesy: ESPN CRICINFO


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