Pakistan’s middle-overs strike major cause for concern: Shahid Afridi

Former Pakistan cricket captain Shahid Afridi has raised concerns with Babar Azam’s team’s output in the middle-overs of the game. Speaking to ICC in an interview, Afridi has said that Pakistan have not been scoring enough runs in the middle phases of the game. Pakistan have not been a high scoring team under the leadership of Babar Azam. Due to the availability of their superb fast bowling attack, in the 2022 tournament, Pakistan backed themselves to defend or chase down scores around 180 runs.

As a tournament ambassador, Afridi shared his thoughts with the ICC, particularly highlighting his worries about the performance between the seventh and thirteenth over.

“The thing that bothers me is the strike rate of our batters, especially in between the seven to thirteen over phase,” Afridi stated.

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He emphasised the necessity for a run rate of eight to nine runs per over in that phase while still maintaining his belief that Pakistan remains one of the favourites to clinch the title.

Afridi, who played an instrumental role in Pakistan’s 2009 T20 World Cup victory, also praised the team’s formidable pace attack. He lauded the skills of pacers such as Shaheen Afridi, Naseem Shah, Haris Rauf, Abbas Afridi, and Mohammad Amir, deeming them the best in the world.

“I feel Pakistan should make the final. The reason is that the conditions (in West Indies and USA) suit our team,” Afridi remarked.

He insisted that the bowling line-up’s depth and versatility could make a significant impact against world-class batters.

Reflecting on the previous T20 World Cup, where Pakistan finished as runner-up to England, Afridi is hopeful the spinners will regain their form and the batting line-up will showcase its strength. He expressed his support for team captain Babar Azam, urging him to continue his excellent form and make decisive calls.

“But if I had to pick one, I would pick the captain Babar Azam, because he is the leader. I want him to perform well, make timely decisions which will take the team to victory,” Afridi affirmed.

Pakistan, grouped with India, Ireland, Canada, and co-hosts USA in Group A, will kick off their campaign against the USA on June 6 in Dallas.

Published By:

Kingshuk Kusari

Published On:

May 26, 2024

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