Zafar Ansari Closely Followed Pragyan Ojha, Learnt From Murali Kartik

Updated: 15 November 2016 20:57 IST

England spinner Zafar Ansari says he closely followed Pragyan Ojha's bowling action for a short period of time, and learnt from Murali Kartik during their county stints at Surrey

Zafar Ansari Closely Followed Pragyan Ojha, Learnt From Murali Kartik
Zafar Ansari (R) picked three wickets in the drawn 1st Test vs India. © AFP

Visakhapatnam:

England's young left-arm spin bowler Zafar Ansari says he closely followed Indian spinner Pragyan Ojha's action and tried to learn from Murali Kartik during their county stints at Surrey.

The 24-year-old Ansari picked up three wickets, including that of Ajinkya Rahane, in the drawn first Test against India in Rajkot.

"First Pragyan Ojha, first four games in 2011. The way he bowls, his actions, I followed closely for a short period of time. Murali Kartik was similar. His approach, the way he spends time at the crease. I watched and tried to learn from him," Ansari said ahead of the second Test in Visakhapatnam.

He is one of the four Muslim cricketers in the England squad currently touring India.

"As a group of four British Muslims, there is something in that. It's really exciting and something we're proud of. But I would not think myself as a role model. I don't necessarily challenge norms in a particular way. So I would not think myself as breaking down boundaries. Moeen (Ali), Adil (Rashid) and Haseeb (Hameed) all of them are doing a wonderful job representing their communities. And that's not an easy role to play but they are doing it really well."

He added, "My second Test felt easier then the first from a psychological perspective. It's just the attention being removed from you to some extent."

Asked about his progress in competitive cricket, "Ansari said, "It's all relative. I am probably comparing myself with Moeen and people like that. They work incredibly hard. They have certain things maybe I don't feel like I have."

Ansari said former Pakistan spinner Saqlain Mushtaq, who is now spin consultant of the England team, only worked on the basics.

"He has not brought anything particularly new. He does not talk about changing (bowling) action etc. It's about the basics, like thinking about the trajectory of the ball, the pace. He talks about the little things which goes into spin bowling and it gives us the confidence.

"It is more about the approach to the game like how to maintain your composure. But his thoughts about spin bowling is very useful for a young spinner because he keeps it simple."

Highlights
  • Zafar Ansari has said he closely followed Pragyan Ojha's action
  • Ansari also learnt from Murali Kartik during their stints at Surrey
  • The left-arm spinner picked up three wickets during the drawn 1st Test
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