Shoaib Akhtar praises the English show “Bazzball”.



The Rawalpindi Test between Pakistan and England looked to be in jeopardy as several players in the visitors’ camp caught virus and fell ill while play-to-schedule began to be questioned. However, the Thursday morning match went off as planned and the crowd at the Rawalpindi Stadium witnessed the writing of history in Pakistan.

For the first time in the history of cricket, a total of four players have smashed centuries on the opening day. Zak Crawley (122), Ben Duckett (107), Ollie Pope (108) and Harry Brooke (101*) are the four batsmen who helped England become the first team to score 500 runs – 506/4 at stumps – in an opening day Test match.

It was indeed a landmark moment as England were playing a Test series after 17 years. The visitors smashed over 500 runs on opening day and doubled the party. Former cricketers are starting to take a crack at the game.

Former Pakistan footballer Shoaib Akhtar paid tribute to England Test coach Brendon McCollum and mentioned the ‘Buzzball’ theory. Sharing a video on social media, Akhtar said that if England players had achieved a world record despite their illness, what could they have done if they were in good physical shape?

“Thank God, the England players are not feeling well, news reports said. Yeh tabyat theek nahi hai to 500 maar diye, tabyat theek hoti to bohot bura haal karte “They score 500 points when they are sick,” Shoaib said in the video. “They would beat us if they were fit and healthy.”

“they [England’s] Coach Brendon McCollum does not believe in slow batting in Test cricket. He asks his players to score the ball. England has played aggressive cricket since he took over. They don’t stop. Newcomer Liam Livingston will be hitting at number seven, so they have depth in the hitting lineup. Therefore, I think Pakistan also needs to change the mentality.”

“It’s a young team, full of innocent people. But Test cricket is indeed very bruising. Pakistan needs to take stock of their situation as it is not an easy thing. It was not a pleasure to see our children being beaten,” Shoaib concluded.

The previous record for first-day runs had been Australia’s 494 accumulated against South Africa in Sydney in 1910. More than 500 runs on the day had only been achieved on four other occasions – three times by England and once by Sri Lanka – but no never achieved on the opening day of the test.

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