Shamsi pleased with wicket-taking exploits in victory over Ireland
World’s top T20 bowler dazzles with ball to help SA defeat Irish hosts by 33 runs
Star Proteas spinner Tabraiz Shamsi is confident his best performances for SA are yet to come after a dazzling performance with the ball in the victory over Ireland on Monday.
Shamsi took four wickets for 27 runs in his four overs to help SA overcome their Irish hosts by 33 runs at the Malahide Cricket Ground and go 1-0 up in the three-match T20 international series.
His performance showed why the left-arm unorthodox bowler is the No 1 T20 bowler in the world.
Shamsi said the ranking is not something he thinks about too much.
“I’d be lying if I didn’t know I was number one in the rankings, but to be honest, it is not something I’ve lost sleep over. It’s a nice feeling being on top but I have said it before and I truly mean it, I don’t even think I am the best bowler in our team.
“We have some great bowlers in the unit and it is a good memory to have but I don’t think about it when I’m playing,” Shamsi said.
The 31-year-old, who showed aggression in his bowling against Ireland, has already taken half as many wickets as he did in their recent five-match T20I series in the Caribbean.
“In the West Indies, I had a different role to play with the power hitters they have. There are two ways to skin a cat and I think with those guys we just had to keep them quiet.
“The only thing I could control was trying to bowl in areas I want to bowl in, wickets are not guaranteed, it depends on how the batsman plays the ball,” he said.
Asked where the aggression comes from, Shamsi said it was from his early days as a seam bowler when he was told he could not be a fast bowler because he was not quick enough.
“I think that is where the aggression comes from, watching guys like André Nel, Dale Steyn and Allan Donald.
“I think it’s definitely a part of my game, and it is a double-edged sword. Sometimes if it doesn’t work, you can travel but it can also disrupt the batsman, so for me, whatever it takes to win games,” he said.
Asked if he was enjoying the best form of his career, Shamsi said it boiled down to his recent spate of appearances and good performances in the team.
“I think it’s just the regular game time, you get to learn quicker from your mistakes and you implement the good stuff a lot more and grow as a player,” he said.
On life inside the bubble, Shamsi said it was tough for the players to be away from their families. “Even though I am doing well from a playing point of view, I am a human being, so are the other players and management.
“Everyone has been away from home for such a long time,” he said.
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