Mouth-watering task | sports
england are arriving in pakistan today for three exams. The first test will start in Rawalpindi from 1st December. The next two exams will be held in Multan and Karachi.
England will play a Test match in Pakistan after 17 years. Their last tour was in 2005. Pakistan hosted England twice during this period in the United Arab Emirates. England toured Pakistan ahead of the 2022 Men’s T20 World Cup in a seven-match T20I match. Visitors won.
The Test series is also part of the World Test Championship and will be essential for Pakistan to keep alive their hopes of making the World Test Championship final. Babar Azam & Co. is currently ranked fifth with a score of 51.85.
Each of the nine Test teams will play six series – three at home and three away – in the 2021-23 tournament. The upcoming series against England is the fifth for Pakistan. Their final series will be the two tests against New Zealand in December 2022 and January 2023.
The Green Jerseys are confident of winning the Test series. The whole team will have to perform if Pakistan wants to beat England.
Pakistani coaches should encourage the players to be brave on the ground and keep the opponent under pressure because aggression is the best defence.
Pakistan will miss the services of Shaheen Shah Afridi who was sidelined with a knee injury that shifted while being picked up during the T20 WC final against England at the MCG. Besides, he underwent appendicitis surgery and would need three to four weeks to recover.
The absence of Shaheen Afridi dealt a huge blow to Pakistan’s bowling who relied heavily on their fast bowlers. A leading Pakistani bowler in all game formats, Shaheen has 99 Tests, 62 ODIs and 58 T20 International wickets from a career that began in 2018.
The selection committee has made four changes from the recent Test series against Sri Lanka. Apart from Shaheen, fast bowler Hassan Ali, middle-order batsman Fouad Alam and experienced spinner Yasir Shah were all dropped.
Fawad scored just 33 runs in three Tests against Australia earlier this year, and managed 25 runs in his only Test for Sri Lanka.
Hassan has been dropped to take just five wickets in his last four Tests – against Australia and Sri Lanka. He has taken 12 wickets in eight matches in the ongoing Quaid-e-Azam Trophy at a high average of over 45.
Yasir has taken nine wickets in Sri Lanka but has only managed 14 wickets in seven Quaid-e-Azam Trophy matches so far.
Fast bowler Muhammad Ali, 30, is one of the new faces in the team. He was first selected to join Zarai Taraqiati Bank Ltd (ZTBL) in 2018 at the age of 26. He has played 22 first-class matches and taken 85 wickets, at an average of 23.37, since his first-class debut. But most of his wickets have come in the last two seasons – 32 in 2021-22 and 24 so far in 2022-23.
Young gazelle Abrar Ahmed, 24, is in great form in the Quaid-e-Azam Cup. Before the start of the last innings (20 November), he had taken 43 wickets at an average of 21.95. He had five five-wicket hauls in six games.
Now, people are mainly looking forward to Test fast bowling debutants Harris Rauf, Nasim Shah and debutant singles Noman Ali and debutant singles Abrar Ahmed.
The role of Noman and Abrar is very important in the absence of the experienced Yasir because the England players do not have much experience playing quality spinners.
Overall, Pakistan’s bowling attack looks relatively inexperienced, but they are talented and experienced in home conditions. They must give a tough time to the experienced England batsmen.
Pakistani strikes look reasonably good in home conditions. Skipper Babar Azam, Shan Masood, Imam-ul-Haq, Azhar Ali and Abdullah Shafique all have the ability to counter any bowling attack.
To date, 86 Test matches have been played between the two teams. England have the upper hand with 26 wins. Pakistan remained successful on 21 occasions.
Andrew Strauss captained England in 11 Tests against Pakistan, winning six and losing four. Misbah-ul-Haq has a more successful record against the visiting team with seven wins in 10 matches as captain. He has only lost two Tests with a winning percentage of 70.
Pakistan’s 708 home runs at The Oval in August 1987 is the highest number of runs to date. Interestingly, Pakistan scored more than 600 runs in Test innings five times, but England never reached this target.
Pakistan and England’s Test innings totals are 72 against each other. Pakistan were bowled out at 72 at Birmingham in August 2010. England also bowled at 72 at Abu Dhabi in January 2012.
Pakistan’s 708 at The Oval in 1987 is the highest innings total in two-Test cricket. England’s record of 636-8 in Lahore in 2005 is their best result against Pakistan.
Former England captain Alastair Cook is the most successful batsman with 1,719 runs in 20 Tests, at an average of 49.11, including five centuries and eight fifties.
For Pakistan, former captain Inzam-ul-Haq scored 1,584 runs in 19 matches at an average of 54.62 with the help of five hundreds and 10 half-centuries.
Denis Comption’s Test series of 278 at Nottingham in 1954 remains the best Test innings score in twosome cricket.
Former captain Zuhair Abbas succeeded him with 274 points, which he scored in Birmingham during the 1971 series.
On the bowling front, former bowler Abdul Qadir is the most successful bowler with 82 wickets in 16 matches, at an average of 24.98.
For the tourists, fast bowler James Anderson took 74 wickets in 18 Tests against Pakistan at an average of just 19.31.
In the last Test series on English soil in 2020, England achieved their first Test series victory (1-0) against Pakistan in a decade. Prior to this England had last beaten Pakistan in a Test series in 2010.