Why not Ravi Shastri, wonders McGrath
Glenn McGrath said if Indian cricket team director Ravi Shastri was donning the role of the chief coach, he did not see why some should be unhappy with the idea.
“If Ravi (Shastri) is doing the same job as a coach, what’s the problem? But I don’t know what Ravi’s doing at the moment,” he added.
McGrath, who is here again to train pace bowling aspirants as director of cricket at the MRF Pace Foundation, said: “During my time with the Australian team, we needed a manager more than a coach.”
The Aussie pace ace was excited at the emergence of Mitchell Starc as the outstanding paceman of the ICC ODI World Cup.
“He is tall, bowls at around 150 kmph, swings the new ball and reverses the old. And he bowls a terrific swinging yorker. Lasith Malinga is the only other paceman who bowls this delivery really well, which is a shame. Many more pacemen should be able to do this,” McGrath said.
“The pacemen do not practice the yorker enough. You have to practice it by bowling behind the line at the nets to get the length right. If you deliver ‘no-balls’ while polishing the yorker, you are bound to get your length wrong in matches.”
“The yorker is a very effective delivery in the shorter formats of the game, not so in Tests. Starc is learning, and could be a threat in Test matches too in days to come.”
McGrath said bowling in Twenty20 cricket had adversely impacted several pacemen in Tests. “In Twenty20 cricket, you bowl different types of deliveries, you change your length and pace often. In Test cricket it is all about consistency, line, length, movement and bounce. The execution is very important, where you want to bowl. You have to land the ball on the pitch in the area you want to hit. I do not see too many pacemen doing this often these days,” he said.
The Australian said he was pleased that his prediction for the World Cup — Australia and New Zealand meeting in the final with Australia winning — came true.
McGrath acknowledged James Anderson’s feat of becoming the first English bowler to pick 400 wickets in Test cricket. “Jimmy (Anderson) is a good bowler, particularly in England. He can do things with the ball, swings it. But he has not been able to do as much on foreign soil,” he said.
MRF head coach M. Senthilnathan said the BCCI, on Tuesday, would send a bunch of young pacemen to the Foundation.
“Many pacemen, including Hardik Pandya, Veer Pratap Singh and Rahul Shukla, will be joining the camp,” he said.
On upcoming pacemen from the Foundation, McGrath said: “Varun Aaron and Ishwar Pandey have been bowling well. We also have Baltej Singh who has a good action. Sandeep Warrier is there too. Aswin Crist has come on a lot. He is bowling in better areas, realises what he is doing.”
India, McGrath said, has pace bowling talent for the days ahead.
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