Contrary to popular belief, England’s spin bowling allrounder Moeen Ali says he prefers to bowl on pitches that don’t offer much turn.
Ali troubled India with his off spin bowling when Mahendra Singh Dhoni and his men toured there two years ago.
“I like to bowl on those pitches that don’t really spin a lot. It is a little bit easier in terms of your line. But when it is spinning, you have more chances of getting wickets. But there you will also leak more runs if it is spinning as much with my style of bowling.
“If a person like Ashwin is spinning, he is still a lot more economical,” said Ali at the team’s open media session in Mumbai on Wednesday.
Ali is one of three slow bowlers in the England squad for the ICC World T20 Championship that started with the qualifying on Tuesday.
The England allrounder said his job in the tournament was primarily to contain the run flow and not take wickets.
“I have not been here many times. My job will be simple – to contain runs, not get hit for too many boundaries and not look too much wicket-wise. The pitches are very good here and the boundaries are short. My job will be to be very economical. I work on my bowling a lot harder than I used to.”
Ali, who will man the spin department with leggie Adil Rashid and left-arm Liam Dawson, still saw himself as a batting allrounder.
“I like to see myself as a batsman even though I am batting at eight. My role in the team is a little different now. So I have to consider what is keeping me in the team.
“(But) As long as I am playing in the team, it doesn’t really matter where I am batting. In my domestic team, when I first came, I was opening the batting. My role is to go and score quick runs depending on the situation of the game. It’s difficult for me because I am not somebody who goes in and hits the ball out of the ground straightway.”
He did not want to talk much about the success he tasted against a top team like India who play slow bowling well.
“That was a while ago. I was a little bit surprised there. I did bowl quite well there in the Test matches, especially during the latter stages. That doesn’t really count for anything now. I am looking for the (fresh) challenge.”
He described England as a young and inexperienced side.
“Coming to India, in general, is a massive challenge especially, and the T20 World Championship is an even a bigger challenge. So it will be tough.
“When you have a young team you play differently and with a lot of freedom. (I) hope that can work in our favour on this trip.”
Fast bowler Liam Plunkett echoed the view of England skipper Eoin Morgan by saying India were the favorites for the title, adding that there were a lot of “good teams” playing the tournament.
“So every team is dangerous, like our team, (Alex) Hales, (Joe) Root, (Jason) Roy they can all change the game,” he said during the team’s open media session.
The pacer, who was picked in place of injured Steve Finn, said the English side has been pretty successful over the last 16 months and that they will not change their approach despite losing a couple of games and have come with confidence for the mega-event.
“The side has been improving in every aspect and the last 16 months or so were successful. Just because you lose a couple of games (against South Africa) you don’t change how you have been. And we have come to this tournament with confidence. We take every game as the next and that’s exciting,” he said.
Asked whether the bowlers will do a holding job or go for wickets, the pacer said that their roles will depend on the situation in a particular match.
“Wickets win you games. Normally up front in the power play (in the first six overs) you want wickets and generally looking to take wickets,” Plunkett added.
According to him, bowlers generally bowl straight in the sub-continent.
“Generally you bowl straight in the sub-continent. You have to bowl straight. If I am bowling as quick as I can, you can try and still do that just bowl yorkers from the second ball or second over. But then again I am picked for my pace,” he said.