Why don’t India produce world-class fast bowlers?

Zee Media Bureau

New Delhi: India is the second largest country in terms of population, the most amongst any other cricket playing nation and is considered the breeding ground of World champions. It is undoubtedly the power house of world cricket in terms of finance and resources. It has a rich history of producing world-class batsmen.

Now this is only one side of the coin, the other side says that despite having every asset in its kitty, India is unable to produce a genuine fast pacer, although there were few exceptions here and there.
Whenever any foreign country tours India , the strategy revolves around tackling spinners and batsmen but not quickies. In Indian cricket, it has been unceasing problem that Indians are not capable
of taking 20 wickets in Tests and restricting the run-flow in limited over format.

On dry, subcontinent pitches, spinners play the spearhead role of bowling attack, but outside subcontinent, spinners are forced to play the second fiddle because pitches assist pace, and our pace battery looks discharged, this is the only reason that our overseas record is below par.

After all, what is the root cause to the problem that in 120 billion people, India is not getting a genuine quickie? It is possibly because of lack of strength and physique, or even because the pitches in India supports spinners or it could be that batting is considered superior than bowling.

India has MRF Pace Academy, with extremely good infrastructure and facilities and it has produced young lanky genuine pace bowlers in the past like Brett Lee, Mitchell Johnson and Glenn McGrath who is also the current director. The point is whether Indian bowlers are making full use of MRF Pace Academy?

The mindset of Indians are such that they consider title `Batsman` more stable, superior and long lasting in comparison to quickies whose career are considered injury prone, olive sized. There have been many bowlers in the past who showed great promise like Irfan Pathan, Ishant Sharma and Munaf Patel, but lost their effectiveness and pace in couple of seasons.

These players were effective early on, but after injuries, they lost their pace and relied on line and length, wrist position and focused on other technical issues.

Is it that we are over using the pacers and relying too much on them instead of creating the pool for faster ones through the rotation policy? We don`t offer bowler friendly pitches to them and encourage them to bend their back. India always offers flat wicket which is embedded with bundles of runs and assist spinners later on, this is what history and statistics suggest.

We need to change this mindset and make the young ones believe that fast bowling is an art and is equally important as any other aspect of the game. History suggests that its the bowlers who win the matches most times, especially pacers.

Lack of good pacers is the reason why India isn`t winning matches outside the subcontinent. The speedsters can create terror in the opposition camp, as well as prepare our batsmen mentally and physically in facing quality pace attack. By producing good pacers, India can kill two birds with one stone.