DERBY: Mickey Arthur has praised Pakistani fast-bowler Zaman Khan’s bowling efforts in the inaugural match of the T20 Blast tournament.
Arthur, who is the Head of Cricket at Derbyshire cricket club and also Director Pakistan cricket team, was speaking to media after Derbyshire Falcons were defeated by Lancashire Lightning in their opening match.
Zaman Khan who is part of the two-time PSL winning franchise Lahore Qalandars was roped in by Mickey Arthur to strengthen the bowling squad of Falcons in the Blast. He who joined Derbyshire squad on Thursday and had just one practice session at Incora County Ground, home of Derbyshire cricket, before he was put into action in the T20 Blast opener on Saturday against Lancashire at Edgbaston.
Although Zaman didn’t have a great start to the tournament and leaked runs in his first two overs but made a strong comeback late in the match.
But Mickey Arthur hopes that the right arm pacer, who’s got a slinging bowling action and has proven his ability to consistently fire in yorkers at 90mph speed in his career so far, will get better and better as the tournament progresses.
“He will just get better and better. He possesses the skills we need. He bowls an incredibly good fast yorker, he bowls a good bouncer and a very good slower ball and those are the skills we need,” said Arthur
“The key is he fits into what we needed, we needed somebody who can bowl two overs in the power play and then can bowl two overs at depth. Something when we had looked at our squad we thought we had left, and he can do that and does that incredibly well. We battle a little bit with his English but actually we are very fortunate to get him,” he added.
Zaman Khan, who hails from Azad Kashmir and comes from a very humble background, has consistently shown his talent in the last couple of years. He bagged 15 wickets in 13 matches in this year’s PSL for champions Lahore Qalandars.
His phenomenal success and ability to bowl at death overs while under pressure has earned him a call to Pakistan national team this year. He made his debut during the three-match T20I series against Afghanistan in March this year.
“He will get just better and better as this is his first time in England, first time in these conditions. We need to just get another week into him and he’ll be good to go on Friday night,” said a very optimistic Arthur.
Zaman Khan will be back in action on Friday, May 26, when Derbyshire Falcons take on neighbouring Nottinghamshire Outlaws at Trent Bridge, a match dubbed as Esat Midlands Derby.
It’s worth mentioning that in the same match Zaman Khan’s skipper at PSL franchise Lahore Qalandars, Shaheen Shah Afridi, is also set to play his first game in T20 Blast tournament for Nottinghamshire Outlaws.