Mumbai, April 2: Eric Simmons, the former South African all-rounder, who was also Team India's bowling consultant (2010-2012), believes that the bowlers can avoid delivering no-balls only with the long practice sessions.
India is believed to have lost the World T-20 Semi Final against West Indies on Thursday (Wankhede Stadium) owing to the two no-balls delivered by R. Ashwin and Hardik Pandya. Both bowlers had over-stepped the crease and efforts by two catchers (Bumrah off Ashwin and Ashwin off Pandya) yielded no results.
Speaking exclusively over no-ball issues, he says, "only way is extensive and disciplined practice over extended period".
"The bowling style (of not delivering the no-balls) cannot be changed by simply changing the length of the run-up", Simmons added.
"Over a period of time in the nets the bowler has to reprogram his landing spot in his muscle memory".
Interestingly, spinner Ashwin is in the Dhoni-led Rising Pune Supergiants IPL squad and will be looked after by Simmons. The other fast-bowlers (Ashok Dinda, Ishant Sharma, Ishwar Pandey, R. P. Singh) in the team may also seek Simmons' knowledge to avoid over-stepping.
"The best example is Umesh Yadav. He balls way behind the crease", said Simmons.
These days umpires double-check the no balls after wicket is fallen. But before 2010, there was no such practice of umpires checking with the TV umpires and therefore recent players have wickets taken off no balls more than past players.
Googly : Captain Dhoni blamed no-ball issue as one of the reasons for India's defeat against West Indies and in his Press-conference after the Semi Final at the Wankhede stadium had said, "no bowler wants to deliver the no-balls".
In a lighter vein, he forgot the names of Pakistan's Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Asif.