IPL 8: T20 is not a bowler's nightmare, says Shane Bond

Former NZ pacer & MI bowling coach Shane Bond says bowlers must reinvent their game to excel in T20

Shane Bond's international career for New Zealand lasted just 120 matches from 2001 to 2010. His career may have been marred by injuries, but on his day, he was one of the most fearsome bowlers in world cricket. One of the world's fastest bowler at one point, Bond has no regrets though from his injury-curtailed career.

Mumbai Indians' bowling coach Shane Bond at a city hotel yesterday. Pic/Satyajit Desai
Mumbai Indians' bowling coach Shane Bond at a city hotel yesterday. Pic/Satyajit Desai 

"The game has looked after me really well," says Mumbai Indians bowling coach, who previously held a similar position with the NZ team at the World Cup earlier this year.

In a chat with mid-day, a day after Mumbai Indians stormed into the Indian Premier League-8 final beating Chennai Super Kings in the Qualifier 1 at Wankhede, Bond (39) explained why T20 cricket should not be perceived as a nightmare for bowlers, highlighted India's ability to produce pace bowlers and criticised the International Cricket Council for tinkering with the rules too often.


On the ICC Cricket Committee's new recommendations:
We have to be careful while tinkering with the rules. I come from a country where rugby is the main sport. If every year you have a new rule or modify an existing rule, it can put them (fans) off because they don't understand the new rules and it's tough to follow. We had a fantastic World Cup, then why tinker with it? It is important that we first implement these rules at the domestic level, see whether it is successful, and then implement it at the international stage.

On the recommendation to allow a bowler to bowl more than 10 overs:
It's a big mistake. One of the greatest elements of the game is the art of captaincy and how the captain manages his bowlers. That's a part of the ODI magic. If you allow one bowler to bowl more than 10 overs, it negates the quest to find the right balance between the batting and bowling line-up.

On the current four-fielders-inside-the-30-yard-circle rule:
I don't think T20 is a nightmare for bowlers. Those who are skillful will succeed. It is equally difficult for batsmen to come in and start playing their shots. It's a challenge to do well within the rules. I don't think these rules are against bowlers. It is a challenge for the players to reinvent their game. T20 is about having the right temperament. (There is) no point in complaining… look at great bowlers like Mitchell Starc, Trent Boult, Mohammad Shami — they are all successful under the current rules.

On India's potential to produce fiery pacers:
India can definitely produce fast bowlers but I guess, the conditions play a major role in this. The other factor is the volume of cricket. You have to manage them well; plan their future tournaments and decide well when they will rest and when they will play. If you are going to make them bowl throughout the year, then you may only get to utilise their service for two years instead of five years. Fast bowlers are assets.

On pacers worldwide breaking down frequently:
It is a combination of tiredness, fatigue or losing strength. As a coach now, I try and understand each player, what he can cope with. If you can understand them well, then you can manage them well and help them limit their injuries certainly. No one can stop them from getting injured.

On MI's bowling turnaround:
I don't think we started off poorly, but we got better and better with our bowling. It is now our strength that we can defend any total. We have confidence to execute our plans. We have used the conditions well and got the results. MI job was unexpected and I am glad I got the opportunity to come here and get some valuable coaching experience. I am thrilled that we are now in the final. Managing the number of players was a challenge. I realised you can't give equal number of time to everyone. It was all about developing the trust with the players. We have good bowling leaders like Lasith Malinga. It is a different kind of expectations here.

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