Shoaib sends express warning - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Shoaib sends express warning

01/12/2004 06:24:42 PM Comments (0)

Pakistani tearaway Shoaib Akhtar has sent a clear message to the Australian cricket team before the upcoming Test series with a blistering opening spell at the WACA.

The Rawalpindi Express wasted little time against the West Australian second XI before producing the raw pace the tourists desperately need to be competitive in the three-Test series against Australia starting this month.

Shoaib only bowled five overs as he builds his workload towards the first Test at the WACA starting December 16, but it was enough to suggest the Australian batsmen will have their hands full this summer.

He finished with 1-22, but most of the runs he conceded were lucky edges through the slips cordon while he also had WA's Scott Meuleman caught off a no-ball.

All of the home side's top order struggled to cope with Shoaib and opening partner Mohammed Sami (3-17), who are a damaging opening pair.

Since his disappointing series against India earlier this year, when he took just seven wickets at 42.43 in three Tests, Shoaib said he'd put in some serious training and the results were finally starting to show.

"I have been bowling fast," he said on Wednesday.

"After the India series I really worked hard, got back in rhythm, reduced my weight, I've trained really, really hard with my trainers and I'm just getting back (to form).

"It's about time isn't it?"

Pakistan skipper Inzamam-ul-Haq decided not to play the opening match of the tour, with Yousuf Youhana captaining the side in his absence.

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