Luke Wood reveals words of wisdom from Wasim Akram helped him on his England debut

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England seamer Luke Wood reveals words of wisdom from bowling legend Wasim Akram helped him claim three-wicket haul on his debut in T20 win over Pakistan

  • England seamer Luke Wood impressed on his debut in the T20 win over Pakistan 
  • The 27-year-old bowled with pace and aggression to claim a trio of late victims
  •  He was seventh southpaw paceman selected in England T20 squads this year

Luke Wood launched his international career this week with words of advice from the great Wasim Akram fresh in the memory.

For a left-armer, there can be no more revered mentor than the former Pakistan fast bowler.

‘As a kid, him and Ryan Sidebottom were my two that I looked up to, and thankfully I got to speak to him when I was over here at the Pakistan Super League in February, so that was pretty cool,’ Wood reflected, following a debut three for 24 in the opening match of seven Twenty20 internationals here.

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England seamer Luke Wood impressed on his debut in the T20 win over Pakistan

‘We spoke about bowling, and he did a little bit at Lancashire earlier this year and we had another chat, so I got a few tips from him then. He’s not telling you how to bowl, he’s suggesting little things you could think about, like plans.’

Wood’s plans at Karachi’s National Stadium on Thursday evening are unlikely to alter from Tuesday when he bowled with pace and aggression to claim a trio of late victims and help limit Pakistan to 71 runs from the final 10 overs.

The six-wicket win was special to the 27-year-old, who realised ‘they don’t just give out England caps for no reason,’ as a non-playing member of a one-day tour of the Netherlands in mid-summer.

The 27-year-old bowled with pace and aggression to claim a trio of late victims

The 27-year-old bowled with pace and aggression to claim a trio of late victims

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Wood launched his international career with words of advice from the great Wasim Akram (above) fresh in the memory

Wood launched his international career with words of advice from the great Wasim Akram (above) fresh in the memory

Not being first choice is a common theme. Wood was the seventh southpaw paceman selected in England T20 squads in 2022, and gone are the days when they were simply thrown in for variation. He was one of three along with Sam Curran and David Willey in game one.

‘The idea that you can play too many left-armers is a huge myth. Teams can play four right-armers but can’t play four left-armers? I just never understood that,’ Wood said.

‘We’re all different: all different heights and speeds, all have different attributes.’

Combinations for the attack could be limited for the first of two matches in 24 hours as Richard Gleeson, one of England’s stand-by players for the World Cup next month, was being assessed last night after discomfort in his hip kept him to two overs during Pakistan’s first innings of the campaign.

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Wood, meanwhile, is thankful that Roses rival Harry Brook is an ally here, having nominated the Yorkshire batter – who struck a dreamy 42 not out on Tuesday – as his most difficult opponent.

‘I tell him all the time. He’s a very hard player to bowl at, at the moment and in general – red ball cricket, white ball cricket, he’s one of the most talented people I’ve come across,’ Wood said.

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