Former Pakistan batter Hasan Raza has urged the International Cricket Council (ICC) to check the balls which are being used by the Indian bowlers in the ongoing Cricket World Cup. India thrashed Sri Lanka by 302 runs at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai to qualify for the semi-finals. After posting a mammoth total of 357, India bowled Sri Lanka out for a meagre total of 55. India pacer Mohammed Shami bagged his second five-wicket haul of the tournament, while Mohammed Siraj broke the back of Sri Lanka’s top-order with three early dismissals.
India’s frontline pace trio of Jasprit Bumrah (15), Mohammed Shami (14) and Mohammed Siraj (9) have shared 38 wickets between them in seven matches. Raza feels that a lot of close DRS calls have gone in India’s favour, and also suggested that facing Shami and Siraj is like taking on some of the great pacers of his time.
“It’s difficult to understand this. When India are batting, they are playing well. But when India are bowling, other teams are struggling. Some of the DRS decisions have gone in India’s favour to, around 7-8 DRS calls have been very close and all have gone in their favour. But today we saw a different level of aggression from the Indian bowlers. When Shami and Siraj are bowling, it seems like we are playing against Allan Dolland and Makhaya Ntini back in the days,” Raza said during a discussion on ABN News.
Raza, who was once accused of match-fixing after being caught on video in a sting operation by Al Jazeera, feels that ICC or BCCI is providing some special balls only to Indian bowlers, due to which the players are getting extra swing on batting-friendly tracks.
“It seems like the ball gets changed in the second innings. I think the ICC, umpire or the BCCI is giving a different ball to the Indian bowlers. The side batting first scored 350 and were all over the chasing team. The way Mohammed Shami bowled his first ball, even Angelo Matthews was stunned. During our playing days, there was only one ball which was utilised, and had both swing and reverse swing,” the 41-year-old added.
Raza further stated that the ICC should provide proper inspections of the ball being used by India in the Cricket World Cup matches.
“I think the balls should be checked. I know there are two new balls for bowlers bowling from each end, but they have taken three slips in an ODI match. Even KL Rahul was struggling to pouch the ball behind the stumps. It seems that there is an extra coating of laquer in the balls. I think the opposition teams should inspect the balls,” Raza concluded.
However, former India opener Aakash Chopra lashed out at Raza, labelling his antics during the discussion as “comedy”.
Is it a serious cricket show? If not, please mention ‘satire’ ‘comedy’ in English somewhere. I mean…it might be written in Urdu already but unfortunately, I can’t read/understand it. https://t.co/BXnmCpgbXy
— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) November 3, 2023
India sit top of the World Cup points with seven wins in as many outings. They next face South Africa at the Eden Gardens on Sunday, before finishing their group stage campaign against Netherlands a week later.
Topics mentioned in this article