Known for his unique bowling action, Paul Adams became one of the most easily recognisable South African cricketers in the late 90s.
Now, a spin bowling consultant for the South Africa Under-19 team, Adams was in Khulna and Rajshahi with the team where they played against the Bangladesh U-19 team.
He spoke about a variety of topics including the growth of Bangladesh cricket and how he feels about their chances in the World Cup in an exclusive interview with The Business Standard (TBS).
The last Adams came, it was as part of the Proteas Test team two decades ago and was the top wicket-taker in the series with 14 wickets.
South Africa, against an inexperienced Bangladesh Test team, won both matches by an innings and the series 2-0.
"Bangladesh cricket seems to have changed drastically now. There is a lot more development overall I think. You see the age-level teams doing well, and that trickles down to the senior-level team as well. Bangladesh cricket has grown from strength to strength," Adams said.
Adams also feels Bangladesh have a good chance in the upcoming World Cup, especially because of the tournament format.
"There are no clear favourites this time in the tournament. With sub-continental conditions, and the bowlers Bangladesh have, they will certainly have a good chance. A lot of their players are experienced like Shakib (Al Hasan), and Mushfiqur (Rahim) and played multiple World Cups before. It's about performing on the day and doing well then," he said.
The next U-19 World Cup is also not far away with Bangladesh U-19 and South Africa U-19 both being contenders as former winners.
Adams wants to get the best out of the players he is currently coaching.
"The way the players are at the moment, they are figuring out what they are good or bad at. It's about getting the players to play well in different scenarios. How they have to react in certain game states and what they have to do. As the next U-19 World Cup is in Sri Lanka, the conditions won't be much different, so this will be a valuable experience for them," he explained.
Being a bowler with an unorthodox action, Adams feels that as a coach, he has to allow players to express themselves and figure out what works best for them.
"Unorthodoxy can be a big weapon too. Sometimes players will find it difficult to play your bowling if you have a unique action. We see that more and more in T20 cricket these days. But as a player, it's about evolving and adding new weapons to your armoury. Only then can you separate yourself from the good to the great," he added.
Although Adams is working as a spin bowling consultant for South Africa, he is open to coaching elsewhere and branching out as well.
"I've really enjoyed working with the Proteas U-19 team. I'm not sure if I'm going to get a long-term gig here, but I'm open to anything really. Any way I can help out the next generation and lend my 15-plus years of experience, I'm up for it."