Aggression in fast bowling

Something I feel that is sorely missed in the world of cricket, is having a fast bowler running in for an over with the aim of scaring the batsman. I miss the days of watching the likes of Freddie Flintoff, Mitchell Johnson, Dale Steyn, running in and bowling a well-placed bouncer, forcing the batsman into doing something unconventional and making them feel unsettled. It is not only entertaining to watch but also requires a lot of skill.

Don’t get me wrong having a fast bowler that is able to hit his mark over and over again is gold. But having a bowler that has the mentality and ability to give the team a spell of aggressive fast bowling, when the team is in need of a break through and to turn the game on its head. Look at the test series where the Proteas played India in Nagpur, Dale Steyn finished his spell with figures of 7 for 51, which clear helped the Proteas win the match.

Now as a batsman walking to the crease after watching his team mate’s stumps flying to the boundary is defiantly going to course some doubt, knowing that you are about to face a ball traveling at 150km on pitch that suited to fast bowling, is going to instill some fear. After taking your mark as a batsman and you have a bowler running in and before you can play your shot the wicket keeper is catching the ball at head height.… No one likes facing a ball traveling that fast.

Having a player with the ability to run in and hit the deck hard ball after ball is huge advantage to the team. Look at the current England test team with the likes of Joffra Archer and the current Pakistan test team with Naseem Shah. These players stand out to me, because both captains have allowed them to let loose and just bowl as fast as they can, because yes they might go for runs but a smart captain will have a bowler from the end that is economical and can dry runs up.

To conclude this, all I would like to say the coaches, managers and captains. If you have the pleasure of working with an out and out fast bowler allow him/her the freedom to run in bowl.

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