Australia unearth answer to counter Shakib threat
Published : Monday, 2 August, 2021 at 7:38 PM Count : 317
Australia unsurprisingly picked Shakib Al Hasan as the biggest threat for their ambition to beat Bangladesh in the five-match T20 International series, beginning tomorrow (Tuesday) but they looked to unearth the answer to neutralize the impact of the world’s best allrounder.
Last time when Australia toured Bangladesh in 2017 for a two-match Test series, Shakib gave them torrid time on the pitch. The ace all-rounder took 10 wickets and also scored 84 runs in the spicy pitch to help Bangladesh win their first Test against Australia. However the Aussies managed to draw the series.
There was however extra motivation for Shakib to come up with his best against Australia. While Bangladesh didn’t play against Australia more often, Shakib will definitely try to make the series a memorable one and also he is shy of just five wickets to become the only second bowler in T20 International cricket to claim 100 wickets after Sri Lankan great Lasith Malinga.
Matthew Wade, who is leading Australia in absence of Aaron Finch said they are now better prepared than they were four years ago and a fresh tactical approach against spin will also be considered.
Ashton Agar was sent out to bat at No.6 on his return from a hamstring injury in Australia's most recent game, a six-wicket win in the ODI series decider against the West Indies, due to his left-handedness.
It is a ploy Wade said could be repeated specifically to counter Shakib, who could be joined by fellow left-arm spinners Nasum Ahmed or Taijul Islam during the series.
"That will certainly be looked at. With Agar back it gives us the opportunity to have a few more lefties in the line-up,” Wade said cricket.com.au today.
"We've got myself and Alex Carey here as well.. Mitchell Starc is there as well. We saw using left-handers, especially with the left-arm orthodox spinners, worked well (against the West Indies) … I think it could be used when needed for sure.”
"We used it in the last one-dayer, we used it in New Zealand (in T20s earlier this year) a bit with Agar going up (the order).That's not to say the right-handers can't play spinners, it's just that statistically and match-up wise it works a bit better at times. I'm sure we'll use that throughout the series."