Kolkata: All eyes were predictably trained on the maverick Mohammed Amir, who came out all guns blazing during Pakistan team's intense first training session at the Eden Gardens, this morning.
Pakistan pacers Mohammad Irfan (left) and Mohammad Amir practice during their training session at Eden in Kolkata yesterday. Pic/PTI
The inswinging yorkers were right on target as Amir aimed at the base of a single stump repeatedly and with consummate ease.
Getting the channel right was top on the agenda of the Pakistani pacemen as veteran Mohammed Sami and seven-feet giant Mohammad Irfan also practiced with a single stump under the watchful eyes of bowling coach Azhar Mahmood. Another veteran Wahab Riaz bowled to the batsmen at the main nets.
No time wasting
Having landed here on Saturday evening, following much drama about their participation that delayed their arrival by three days, Shahid Afridi and Co wasted little time and checked in to Eden Gardens less than 12 hours after their arrival, and went about their practice session for more than two hours beginning at 9.15 am.
First to turn up at their happy hunting Eden Gardens was head coach Waqar Younis accompanied by interim bowling coach Mahmood as they went straight to inspect the pitch.
After bowling more than half an hour, Amir bowled to his skipper Afridi as Pakistani camp really looked relief to get back the bowler.
Riaz later said at the Open Media session that his workload has lessened with Amir's return. "Amir is very different. He has got a fine inswinger and is very effective. Leading the way with the new ball.
"He's sharp and that gives an extra edge to our Pakistani bowlingattack. There's less pressure on me. He's bowling with the new ball, and he's taking wickets," Riaz said.
'My job is limited'
"I just have to bowl within the stumps. If they're bowling really well, I just have to play the stop-gap role. My job has become very limited.
Citing example of Asia Cup where Amir rattled India with his 3-18, he said: "You have seen what kind of a bowler he is and what he can do with the ball. You've seen all that in the Asia Cup. He's a quality bowler we all know."