Zaheer raring to have a crack

Published: Wednesday, June 8, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
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Chennai:Indian strike bowler Zaheer Khan, has expressed confidence that he is ready to achieve "best results" in the coming season as "I am now very fit and ready to go in for the kill".

"As of today, things are looking good, both in fitness and bowling, I am doing well. I feel happy over being able to bend the ball back and am doing all the right things in preparation for the season,: he told PTI at the MRF pace academy here, where John Gloster, the physio of the national team, is scheduled to put him through the paces.

Zaheer Khan, who has left behind the injury problems he faced last year, is at present training under fitness expert Ramji Srinivasan, who is coordinating his progress with national team trainer, Gregory Allen King.

"Going by my present condition, I am geared up for the coming season. I am getting better when I play more cricket. I am waiting for the Indian camp to start and am confident of living up to the harder grind of fast bowling in the coming season like never before."

Zaheer said he was honoured to be termed as the best bowler in the country by former Indian seamers Javagal Srinath and Venkatesh Prasad.

"I feel honoured by their remarks, which means that they have great faith in my abilities. I feel it is an added responsibility on me. I am doing my best in order to prove myself at this level and to live upto their faith in me."

Zaheer, however, did not agree fully with Srinath's suggestion that fast bowlers should be rotated on a regular basis.

"To some extent you can rotate a bowler only if he has a problem and is not able to deliver 100 per cent," the player from Baroda said.

"Such a bowler should be put under observation, given special training and fitness programme and then be called back into the team. If any good bowler is in form and in perfect rhythm and is match fit, I do not think they should be rested at all. No bowler should be rested without any reason."

On his injury problems, Zaheer, who did not find success against Pakistan as against Australia last season, said fast bowlers have to live with injuries.

"In no way can one avoid it. One should always look at doing the right things and keep his mind clear about everything. By knowing what needs to be done and following certain methods, you learn to avoid injuries or even to minimise recurrences."

"These things come with experience. One should mainly understand and analyse what works best for him and what is not working."

On his off-season schedule, Zaheer said he spent a couple of weeks in Baroda before coming here.

"I have been here for a couple of weeks. I have a heavy schedule of physical training, as well as bowling at the nets. The whole programme has been devised by King and the work is coordinated by Ramji. Balaji, Parthiv Patel, T Kumaran and myself are working here at the academy", he added.

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