Pakistan had a horrendous time in Australia, irrespective of the format. To start with, the T20I team, led by Babar Azam, lost by 2-0 with one game being washed off. Their fortunes didn’t change even in the longer format as Pakistan slumped to defeats in the two-match Test series. Both at The Gabba in Brisbane and the Adelaide Oval, Azhar Ali’s men lost by a margin of an innings.
Pakistan ended their campaign with an innings and 48-run defeat in the Adelaide Day-Night Test. It was their 14th successive Test defeat on Australian soil and the drubbing has pushed Pakistan to No. 8 in ICC’s latest rankings for teams. It’s not much of a surprise that a number of former cricketers are unhappy with how the national team turned up on its tour Down Under.
Everything went wrong, says Ramiz Raja
“Mostly all our batsmen threw their wickets by playing unnecessary shots. Australia tackled our bowlers very well. They did not give our bowlers and fielders any chance. This was a very substandard performance in every way,” Moin Khan was quoted as saying in thenews.com.pk.
Lamenting the thrashing, Ramiz Raja said: “We need gutsy players and tall fast bowlers who can stay fit. Their cricket should be smart. We have copped a lot of punishment here. We have played weird shots, gone for weird bowling tactics and team selection — everything went wrong.”
Raja also raised concerns over Test skipper Azhar’s form in Test cricket. Ali replaced Sarfaraz Ahmed as the captain, but had a horror run in Australia with the bat. He could only manage 62 runs at a poor average of 15.50. As per Raja, Azhar’s poor form didn’t rub off positively on the Pakistan team.
Rashid Latif, another former cricketer, came on hard on the batsmen for their lack of ability in playing out the new ball. “The batsmen do not know how to play the new ball. In our era, players like Saeed Anwar, Aamir Sohail, Ijaz Ahmed and Inzamam-ul-Haq also used to fail at times but once they stayed, they would score a 100,” the veteran mentioned.
Pakistan will have a chance of making amends when they face Sri Lanka in a couple of home Tests, starting December 11. Rawalpindi and Karachi are set to host the matches. The series will also mark the return of Test cricket in Pakistan after a decade since the bus-attack in Lahore.
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