23 April 2020
New Delhi: Mohammed Shami said that former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram and former India fast bowler Zaheer Khan helped shape his technique. Shami, like most other former and current cricketers, has been active on social media as the sport has come to a standstill due to the coronavirus pandemic and spoke about the role Wasim and Zaheer played in his career in an Instagram live chat with his Bengal teammate Manoj Tiwary.
Shami said that he had always looked up to Wasim, considered one of the greatest fast bowlers of all time, and he got to work with him during his time with Kolkata Knight Riders, for whom the former Pakistan captain worked as a bowling coach for a number of years.
"When I came to KKR, I realised the skill and value associated with cricket. I watched Wasim Akram all my life on television, but with KKR, I had the chance to learn from him. For the initial days, I was not even able to talk to him," said Shami.
"Wasim Bhai came up to me then, and he initiated the conversation with me and he started telling me things about bowling. He read me very fast, he realised what I am all about, I learnt a lot from him. If you have someone experienced close to you, then you should not shy away and try to learn maximum things as well," Shami said.
Shami had worked with Zaheer during the former's time with Delhi Capitals, who were then known as Delhi Daredevils.
"Zaheer Bhai and I did not play much together, but whenever I got the chance to talk to him, he was very helpful. I spent time with him during IPL stint with Delhi Capitals, Zaheer Bhai is very experienced, I just wanted to learn how to go about bowling with the new ball," he said.