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Akram questions Simons' appointment

Source : PTI
Last Updated: Wed, Jan 13, 2010 12:39 hrs

New Delhi: Surprised with the appointment of South African Eric Simons as India's  bowling consultant, former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram  on Wednesday questioned BCCI's decision and expressed doubts whether the Protea could give a facelift to their bowling department.

"Yeh banda hai kaun (Who is this guy)? I never heard of Simons before," Akram said.

"I read his (Simons') name in the morning papers and was surprised at the choice. I don't know if he possesses any exceptional coaching skill. If he does, then it's good for India," Akram told Mobile ESPN.



The BCCI on Monday appointed former South Africa  coach Eric Simons as the Indian's bowling consultant for the two Tests against Bangladesh and the subsequent home series against South Africa.

Strange that my first big test will be against SA: Simons

Akram also feels that such a short-term contract would not do much good to the team, rather the board should appoint a bowling coach for a minimum tenure of six to eight months.

"These short stints will certainly not help the players. If I tell a few things to the players for a period of two weeks, then I will have to ensure that they are followed or implemented for some time. Only then a coach will get the desired results," the former left-arm pacer said.

"I feel a coach should stay with the boys for a minimum period of six to eight months and only then the bowling will show improvement," Akram added. A former Western Province player, Simons was picked for the national side in 1994 at the age of 32.

He has played 23 ODIs and taken 33 wickets but failed to impress with the bat. After retirement, he became Western Province's coach and he was assigned as the national coach in September 2002.

Simons' tenure lasted two years until he stepped down in October 2004 after a string of poor show by the national side.

The 43-year-old Pakistani was also not impressed with the increasing tendency of engaging foreign coaches and specialists by the countries in sub-continent.

"I don't understand the fact why do Asian teams employ foreign coaches? And if a South African coach is appointed then why does he bring along a South African guy for the fielding or bowling coach's role," Akram said.

Former South Africa opener Gary Kirsten is now the coach of Mahendra Singh Dhoni's  men while another Protea Paddy Upton the support staff of the team.

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"A home coach can not only impart good enough knowledge to the players but can also gel with the players and talk to them in their own language," Akram said.

India have been without a bowling coach since October last year after Venkatesh Prasad was sacked.



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