South African bowlers need to think out of the box, says Shaun Pollock

South African great Shaun Pollock opined that the likes of Vernon Philander, Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi need to come up with a plan to pick wickets in Indian conditions.

Published : Oct 02, 2019 22:31 IST , Visakhapatnam

Shaun Pollock looks on after the ICC Cricket World Cup Group Match between Pakistan and South Africa a at Lord's.
Shaun Pollock looks on after the ICC Cricket World Cup Group Match between Pakistan and South Africa a at Lord's.

Shaun Pollock looks on after the ICC Cricket World Cup Group Match between Pakistan and South Africa a at Lord's.

Shaun Pollock’s astonishing control and seam movement coupled with his languid and graceful strokeplay made him a true all-rounder.

The great South African with 421 Test scalps at 23.11 and 3781 runs at 32.31 was as influential as they come.

Following the first day’s play between India and South Africa here on Wednesday, Pollock shared his thoughts on the current Proteas bowling attack.

Pollock said since Vernon Philander, Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi had combined well over the last two years, the pace attack was not lacking in experience.

“Perhaps, the conditions are not suiting our bowlers here. They have to think out of the box, apply all their knowledge and experience to be effective in these conditions. I don’t believe they can’t be,” Pollock told Sportstar .

'Need to make new ball count'

On the secret to success in India for visiting pacemen, the 46-year-old Pollock said, “There are moments in the game when you need to cash in. It is vital when you have the new ball in your hand, you got to make it count.”

“Later, you have to get the ball to reverse. You have to bowl with good control. And you have to be clever when you bowl at different batsmen, you need to work out their weaknesses and expose them as soon as possible,” he added. 

The South African great further stated that the bowlers need to 'press on the advantage.'

“You got to earmark certain periods in a match, and realise you have a job to do. And when you get that done, you really have to press on the advantage,” he said. 

Kagiso Rabada and the South African bowling unit failed to make an impact as Indian openers Mayank Agarwal and Rohit Sharma forged an unbeaten 202-run stand on Day one of the first Test.

On the manner Rabada and Philander operated on Wednesday, he said, “They beat the outside edge, asked an awful lot of questions in the first 10 overs in particular. But they needed to make early inroads.”

“Our bowlers need to make adjustments. Our last Test was in February-March. You just don’t walk into Test cricket and find your length and rhythm,” Pollock noted.

'A third pacer'

The South African great felt the team could have gone with a third paceman. “In the years gone by, we believed if two spinners cannot get the job done, why pick a third. Our strength has been our fast bowling. And the pitch here is not a rank turner like the tracks in 2015,” he observed. 

Ngidi, Pollock said, would be his preferred third seamer. “Nortje has got some skill, some real pace and if he is harnessed really well, he can be a central person but he is new to the sub-continent. I would go for Ngidi.”

Queried about Rohit Sharma’s future as a Test opener, he noted, “Given his Test career, he has always done a brilliant job in India. His biggest challenges will come when he has to go overseas. Only he can answer those questions when he goes there. Let’s see what  he can do in New Zealand.”

Pollock conceded he missed watching Jasprit Bumrah in this series. “I would have loved to see Bumrah. I am disappointed he is not playing. I have really been impressed by Bumrah.”

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