Wednesday, January 10, 2018

What is going wrong with Pakistan's ODI team?

So after a 9-match ODI winning streak, Pakistan have now lost the first two ODIs in New Zealand and all has broken lose.

All of a sudden, the batting looks shaky, the captain looks concerned, and the bowling isn't good enough to contain the Kiwis.

So what has gone wrong?

Before that, lets first focus on what is right with this ODI team.

For starters, they have a world class modern day opener and one-down batsman in Fakhar Zaman and Babar Azam.

The bowling is top quality, at least on paper. Aamer, Hasan, Rumman, Faheem, and Shadab provide for great variety and potency.

In Shadab, Faheem, and Hasan, Pakistan also has depth in its batting, which will come to use if only the top order can fire.

Now then, what is going wrong?

The bowling leaked 315 runs in the first ODI and could not defend 150 in 25 overs in the second. That is definitely not top quality. Maybe the bowlers have not been able to find their feet yet in NZ conditions. Maybe Guptill and Monroe are too good for them. Could be a number of reasons.

But then, you can't afford to drop players like Kane Williamson, because they will take full advantage of the chances given to them and go on to score a century.

Pakistan also refuses to learn from its mistakes.

Azhar Ali has gotten out in exactly the same manner in both ODIs. His dismissal in the second ODI was so identical that one could be forgiven to mistake it for a replay of the first ODI.

Shoaib Malik continues to edge it behind the wicket whenever he bats outside Asia.

With Hafeez not bowling any more, Pakistan's ODI side may not be big enough for both him and Malik. Especially with the likes of Haris Sohail sitting on the sidelines.

Another issue that needs to be sorted is the captain's batting number. Six is not the right number for him and too low for a batsman of his ability.

He needs to bat in the top 4.

In 13 innings at number 6 in ODIs, he has scored 268 runs at an average of 26.8 with 1 half century.

In 9 innings at number 5, he has scored 421 runs at an average of 60.1 with 1 century and 3 half centuries.

In 7 innings at number 4, he has scored 197 runs at an average of 39.4 with 1 half century.

In 9 innings as an opener, he has scored 344 runs at an average of 43.0 with 1 century and 1 half century.

It is evident that Sarfraz is better at all other positions, besides number 6. He is best at number 5, which is where he batted when Azhar Ali captained the ODI team.

The reason he is lingering down at 6 is because of the presence of Hafeez and Shoaib Malik in the team.

I believe the batting order requires a reshuffle.

Sarfraz needs to be pushed up. Haris Sohail needs to be brought in. One of Hafeez or Malik needs to be dropped.

Or if one wants both Hafeez and Malik in the side, then drop Azhar and make Hafeez open.

This may somewhat improve Pakistan's batting performance and changes need to be made soon as we are only 18 months away from the World Cup in 2019.

Make your pitch on this post...

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3 Pitched:

  1. Unknown said...

    Drop hafiz is only solution how can a player lk him play 15y ears of cricket.. When highly talented players lk imran nazir nasir razaak etc have been shown doors in their prime........ He is wasting haris sohail.. Learn frm india selection they hv dropped superstars to boost n build youngsters for futre it z called planning which is now where seen in pakistan cricket.. Some former players lk ramiz rashid wassim are promoting some of thier lk in media......cannot understand why they promote hafez over haris n rest

  2. Unknown said...

    1)Fakhar 2)salman(or farhan)3) babar 4)haris 5) sarfaraz(or kamran) 6)umer(or malik or maksood) 7)shadab 8)faheem 9)hassan 10)amir11)junaid(or suhail khan or wahab)

  3. Unknown said...

    Please drop azhar hafeez,shahzad from T-20s and one days .... Ilogical is pakistan selection..... Cant resist anymore these coward players who play for their 50s to secure their place in team for nxt series at substandard strike rate n dont tk attack to opposition...... Bring some change please to mk supporter intrested in wht z coming up nxt.... Other wise wt hafeez shahzad n azhar it z boring n mks restless

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