Former Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar said he is open to the idea of becoming the bowling coach of Team India if an offer comes his way in the future.
Shoaib Akhtar, in his latest interview on social networking app ‘Helo’, said he has always been willing to share his knowledge with the younger generation and that he will work towards producing more aggressive fast bowlers who are not afraid of engaging with the opposition batsmen.
When asked if he would accept a bowling coach role for India if it came his way, Akhtar said: “I will definitely. My job is to spread knowledge. What I have learned is (ilm) knowledge and I will spread it. I will produce more aggressive, fast and more talkative bowlers than the current ones who will tell-off the batsmen in a way that you will enjoy a lot.”
Shoaib Akhtar also said he would like to ‘coach Kolkata Knight Riders’ if an opportunity comes his way. Notably, Akhtar was part of KKR during the inaugural season of the Indian Premier League (IPL). The Pakistan fast bowler played 3 matches and picked up 5 wickets, which includes a 4-wicket haul.
People enjoyed my performance in India: Akhtar recalls 1998 series
Meanwhile, Akhtar also recalled his early meeting with Sachin Tendulkar, during Pakistan’s tour of India in 1998. Akhtar said he did not know how popular Tendulkar was and that time but that the Indian crowds enjoyed his performance on the tour.
“I had seen him but didn’t know how big a name he was in India. In Chennai, I got to know that he was known as a god in India. Mind you, he is a very good friend of mine. In 1998, when I bowled as fast as I could, Indian public celebrated with me. I have a big fan following in India,” Akhtar said.
Only recently, Akhtar had spoken about his rivalry with Tendulkar, saying that Indians often remember the six the latter hit in the 2003 World Cup match between India and Pakistan.
“Sachin has been a very, very close friend of mine. He’s a tremendous guy, very humble. He’s been the greatest batsman, but I might have dismissed him 12-13 times (8) in matches,” Akhtar had said.
“Although, Indians only remember that one six which he hit me in Centurion [during the 2003 ICC World Cup] as it makes them really happy. They keep showing the same six. If I knew that one six can make 1.3 billion Indians so happy, I would have conceded a six every day!”