Mushtaq to motivate Monty
Mushtaq Ahmed is confident he can help England spinner Monty Panesar rediscover his best form.
Last Updated: 23/01/09 3:27pm
New England spin-bowling coach Mushtaq Ahmed is confident he can help Monty Panesar rediscover his match-winning touch.
The former Pakistan and Sussex leg spinner was appointed to England's coaching staff in October, just before Panesar's difficult tour of India.
The Northamptonshire bowler, 26, took just six wickets in two Tests on the trip and found himself overshadowed by Graeme Swann, despite the helpful conditions.
But Mushtaq, who has been recruited for the 10-day build up to the four-Test series against the West Indies, insists Panesar remains the real deal.
"He is a match-winner," Mushtaq said. "People like Inzamam-ul-Haq and Mohammad Yousuf hardly praise spinners because they're too good against them.
"But after they played against England in England, they told me he was the most difficult bowler to face - the Indians said that same thing.
"Spinners sometimes can have bad days, so as a spinner if you play six games and win two games, that is a good ratio, I believe.
"Monty has that potential to win games single-handedly."
With England's preparations getting underway with their first net session in the Caribbean, Mushtaq believes he can help Panesar out of his slump.
"I believe these 10 days before the Test series are important because before big games as a spinner you need the motivation and goals - what kind of achievements you are targeting in that series," he added.
"Dips happened in my career also. Sometimes you go in that shell where you think, 'Hang on, why am I not getting wickets?'
"That is when you need that good surrounding, and I believe I can play that positive role with him." .