Umar Gul feels Mohammad Amir will play a key role for Pakistan during England tour
Mohammad Amir, who is gearing up for a return to the longer format of the game, will resume his Test cricket career at Lord’s – the same ground where scenes of his spot-fixing tribulations occurred. Umar Gul, who failed to find a place in the team, feels that the 24-year-old bowler will be the key to Pakistan’s success on the tour as the English conditions will suit his bowling.
Speaking to PakPassion.net, he said, "We have an excellent bowling attack for this tour and the pick among the fast bowlers will surely be Mohammad Amir. He will play a key role against England. I expect him to perform very well as he has played in those conditions before.
Apart from Amir, Sohail Khan has put in some excellent performances before and knows how to bowl in seaming conditions. But don’t forget that in leg-spinner Yasir Shah, Pakistan has an excellent bowler who can take wickets on any kind of surface."
The first Test of Pakistan’s tour of England is scheduled to start on July 14 and will have special significance for the tainted speedster as he played his last five-day match nearly six years ago on the same ground. The chances that the painful memories of that forgettable summer might return to haunt the recovering bowler are immense.
It is also possible that the left-arm pacer might encounter criticism in the build-up and during his Test comeback from the English media, fans and former cricket players. This is an area where his teammate Umar Gul expects that the Pakistan management will pay attention and ensure that they prepare the pacer well for what could be a rocky road ahead.
The 32-year-old right-arm pacer added, "I am sure the Pakistan management would have spoken to him about it but there is no doubt that Mohammad Amir will face a lot of pressure during the upcoming tour and this is to be expected due to what happened in 2010.
“The British media will be following his every move and I would advise him to let his bowling do the talking. He should restrict his movements from the hotel to the ground and back and simply concentrate on his game and nothing else. This will be the best way to answer all of the criticism and back-talk."
Pakistan is scheduled to begin their campaign with a couple of warm-up matches in order to get themselves accustomed to the English conditions. They will play their first practise game on July 3 against Somerset at Taunton and will try to get as acclimated as they could with the cold and swing-friendly conditions, which is in contrast to those available in the subcontinent. They are touring England for the first time since their controversial visit in 2010 and are set to play three Tests, five ODIs and a solitary T20I.