Former New Zealand pacer Shane Bond believes there's no speedster in the world at the moment as effective as England's Mark Wood. Having been express pace in his heyday, Bond knows a thing or two about the art of fast bowling and believes Wood has the wheels.
Apart from sheer pace, Bond also shed light on the importance on bowlers being able to move the ball. He reckons that if there's no control, the batters will make use of the pace given by the bowlers.
"Mark Wood is the standout for me right now. He is proper gas. I think to be successful, you don't just need pace you should also be able to move the ball. Outside of (Lockie) Ferguson and Wood, I don't think many bowl that fast."
Bond also recalled his memory of Pakistan speedster Shaheen Afridi and when the latter impressed him. On this, he added:
"I have always loved watching Shaheen bowl. I had taken New Zealand A side to UAE a few years ago and he was just 19 and steaming in. When Pakistan bowls, you always feel like something is going to happen."
Shane Bond on Umran Malik
Indian speedster Umran Malik had already impressed Shane Bond when the latter was MI's bowling coach. The former pacer recalled how well Umran had bowled in a game against MI in IPL 2022. However, he also gave his honest opinion on where Umran needs to work hard to get back into the reckoning.
On this, Shane Bond stated (32:35):
"I have seen Umran Malik bowl a lot in the IPL and he had a game-changing spell against us in Mumbai. But has a bit of work to do on his accuracy and his ability to move the ball and change of pace and stuff."
Umran had a pretty disappointing IPL 2023 season, but the youngster certainly has a huge ceiling and will be keen to bounce back.