Moeen bats for permanent role for Saqlain Mushtaq

Last Updated: Wed, Aug 09, 2017 12:45 hrs

[UK], Aug 9 (ANI): England all-rounder Moeen Ali has called on the country's cricket board to employ spin consultant Saqlain Mushtaq on permanent basis after the Joe Root-led side registered a 3-1 win in the four-match Test series against South Africa.

Moeen became the first man in the cricket history to amass more than 250 runs and bag 25 wickets in a four-match Test series, which ended with England clinching a huge 177-run win over the Proteas at the Old Trafford.

Paying tribute to the former Pakistan skipper, Moeen credited "amazing" Mushtaq for his role in helping the England all-rounder enjoy a record-breaking Test series.

Mushtaq was hired by the England and the Wales Cricket Board on a consultancy basis and Moeen expressed his desire to see the former all the time, including this summer's Ashes series that could prove challenging.

"I'd love to have him for all games - T20s, one-dayers and Test matches. If you are going to have batting, fielding and fast-bowling coaches, it would be nice to have a spin-bowling coach for pretty much all the games,' ESPNcricinfo quoted Moeen as saying.

"If I do get on that plane for the Ashes, hopefully I'll have Saqi sitting next to me. I'd like him to be there. He can help me out, he added.

Moeen further revealed that he and Mushtaq were working on a few variations - including a top-spinner that has yet to be used in a match - before admitting that the former Pakistan spinner had contributed more directly to the key wicket of Hashim Amla on the final day of the series.

"He gave me the option of putting a silly point in.Maybe it put something in the batter's mind in terms of playing forward. I bowled a bit shorter, he went back. I think that made the difference," Moeen said.

"There is always something new with Saqi. The basics are the same, but he has found a few variations in my bowling which I am working on. He is brilliant with my mindset," the England all-rounder emphasized.

While Saqlain is slated to work with the England side during the upcoming West Indies series, Moeen hinted that a more permanent role for the former could be agreed soon.

"That's not too far from the future. I know we had him in India, but it's taken a bit of time for me to understand him and him to understand me. He has been amazing for me in terms of helping with my fields, helping me understand my bowling a lot more than I had done previously and I think that has been the biggest difference," he said.

England will now head into the three-match Test series against West Indies, beginning August 17 in Birmingham. (ANI)



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