tIt’s just days away from the much-anticipated Men’s T20 World Cup in Australia, and Pakistan finished their seven-match T20I series against England on a low note. Many questions have been raised by admirers and experts regarding the power of the middle regime in Pakistan.
After failing in the T20 Asia Cup final against Sri Lanka, the selectors, management and coaches had some trials for the series against England, but unfortunately those changes also proved unsuccessful.
After yet another defeat in the T20I series, management has championed the middle-order style of batting and hopes the Pakistani batsmen will perform well in the T20 World Cup.
Pakistan’s beating backbones Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan are steadfast and reliable. Both were top scorers in the series. Rizwan scored 316 runs in 6 T20I innings at a batting average of 138.58. He hit 23 fours and 10 sixes in the entire series. Babbar also did well and scored 285 runs in 7 innings at a strike rate of 143.21. He also scored his second T20I century.
In the second match of the series, the devastating pair set a new world record for partnership in a T20 chase, scoring 203 together without losing a wicket.
Openers’ performance has always played an important role in T20I cricket. If the openers provide a strong start, the middle order can chase or set a big total.
But most of the criticism about these two openers has to do with their strike rate in the first six overs as other teams get the most out of their hard hitting game. In the England series, Rizwan has a strike rate of 138.59 (129.89 in powerplay) and Babar 143.21 (124.13 in powerplay).
Ex-cricketers say both openers should play aggressive cricket in the first six overs to reduce pressure on the middle-order batsman.
Speaking to The News on Sunday, former Test cricketer Tauseef Ahmed said Babar and Rizwan failed to make the most of their first six overs. He added that the openers should play attacking cricket and take 10 runs each in the powerplay.
“Rizwan has played great batting for Pakistan in the past two years and he is the most dangerous batsman at the moment,” Tawseef said.
Tauseef said that this series failure exposed the strength of Pakistan’s middle system ahead of the T20 World Cup. He said, “The middle regime did not show its intention to chase 200 targets or higher after the early departure of Radwan and Babar.”
He also expressed his disappointment with the coach’s strategy, saying that Pakistan had missed an opportunity to experiment with the batting command. “I think Babar should have underestimated someone in this series because he plays defensively and smartly and Pakistan needs someone who can play the big shots with Rizwan in the opener,” said the former spinner.
Tawseef said, “Babar should give Fakhar Zaman a chance as an opener with Rizwan in the next T20 World Cup because Fakhar will benefit more in his power play than Babar.”
Fakhar is in the Travel Reserves for Pakistan’s T20 World Cup squad.
Meanwhile, Haider Ali didn’t get a chance to play in the playing XI in the Asia Cup, but in this series, the coaches gave a proper opportunity to young Haider to show his skills as a proper T20 batsman, but he unfortunately failed to impress. determinants.
The 22-year-old batsman played 5 games 4 innings pitched and scored just 36 runs with a strike rate of 94.73.
Tauseef supports the inclusion of great cricketers Shoaib Malik and Sarfaraz Ahmed in Pakistan’s squad for the T20 World Cup. “Malik has made great contributions in the past. He knows how to play in Australia and Sarfaraz better than Mohamed Haris.
Malik’s last appearance for Pakistan in the T20I series was against Bangladesh last year. He has played 124 T20 Internationals, scoring 2435 runs, at an average of 31.21. Overall, he played 472 T20s and scored 11,698 runs with 71 half-centuries.
Former cricketer Abdul Rauf has expressed concerns about Asif Ali’s batting style because he failed to handle the pressure in the middle when he had the chance.
“Asif should play his role as a batsman in the team if he gets a chance in the middle. He should play responsibly. The batsman should be able to play any number as per the requirements of the team.”
Asif scored 34 runs in four innings in 4 T20Is against England at a batting average of 136.00.
“Selectors should give Shergil Khan a chance for his recent performance in the National T20 Cup,” he said.
Raouf believes Fakhar and Shergill are suitable T20 openers due to their aggressive cricket.
“Azam Khan is a better choice than Khushdil Shah because Azam plays according to the demands of T20 cricket. Azam can perform well in short formats but he is constantly ignored by the selectors.”
In the recently concluded Caribbean Premier League, Azam played several powerful strikes to take his team (Barbados Royals) to the final. He scored 257 runs in 10 CPL innings with a strike rate of 127.86.
Rauf criticized Khushdil Shah’s hitting style. “Khochdil needs to improve himself,” he said.
Khushdil scored just 63 runs at a strike rate of 112.5 against England.