Pace legend Akram to help Pak in rediscovering world-class quicks

Johannesburg, Mar 20 (ANI): Pace legend Wasim Akram has vowed to help Pakistan's dwindling stock of quality fast bowlers by grooming world class speedsters.

Wasim was part of a long line of world-class Pakistani fast bowlers that began with Fazal Mahmood in the 1950s and featured the likes of Imran Khan, Waqar Younis and Shoaib Akhtar, Sport24 reports.

However, pace stocks have declined in recent years and Pakistan currently have no fast bowlers among the top 10 in either Test or one-day rankings.

Chief selector Iqbal Qasim last week expressed disappointment over the lack quality fast bowlers, a concern which Akram hopes to help address by holding a two-week camp in April to unearth new talent, the paper said.

Wasim, who is regarded as the best left-arm fast bowler ever to play at international level with 414 Test and 502 one-day wickets, said Pakistan need to improve their bench strength to excel in the long form of the game.

Akram said he is sure talent is there but there is no plan B, adding they don't have good bowlers for Tests which was proved in the series against South Africa where they lacked in that department.

Pakistan was whitewashed by world No 1 South Africa 3-0 last month in their recently concluded Test series. The hosts also hold a 2-1 lead in the ongoing five match one-day series.

Akram added Pakistan's inability to make use of home-advantage, which allows players to excel, was a key factor holding back the development of youngsters.

Akram said it was time for the Pakistan Cricket Board to take concerns over fast-bowling more seriously.

The PCB is also trying to rope in Waqar Younis, with whom Akram formed a fearsome partnership during the 1990s, for their national cricket academy in Lahore, built to groom young players, the paper further reported. (ANI)