Pakistan needs good batsmen: Former captains

Last Updated: Oct 30, 2010, 12:13 PM IST

Karachi: Pakistan’s continuing poor form against South Africa in the ongoing series in the UAE has drawn stinging criticism from former captains who feel the team desperately needs good batsmen.

South Africa swept aside Pakistan by eight wickets in the first one-day international in Abu Dhabi yesterday after outclassing Shahid Afridi’s men in the two Twenty20 matches earlier in the week.

“Definitely the batting is letting the bowlers down. The batting is just not good enough and they are not putting up enough runs for the bowlers to defend,” former captain Asif Iqbal said.

Iqbal also felt that Afridi’s poor form was having a negative on the team’s overall performance.

“I think Shahid has to pick up his performance because he has to lead by example and it is the job of the team management and coach to motivate and lift the players in these circumstances,” the former captain said.

Despite the return of former captain Younus Khan to the team and his scoring a half century, Pakistan were bowled out for just 203 runs.

Former captain Javed Miandad felt that the team needs to show more purpose and planning.

“There is no purpose in the way they are approaching the matches. The batsmen are playing without a plan and that is why they are struggling to get big scores,” he said

Miandad said the players just need to learn the art of staying at the wicket and putting a high value on their wicket.

Another former captain Aamir Sohail said he was disappointed with the role of the team’s coaching staff.

“Where is the coaching/support staff. What is their job description?” he asked.

“Nowadays in modern day cricket it is clear that the role of the support staff is very important and plays a big part in any team’s success of defeat. But in our team I don’t know what is happening the players are playing without any plan at all.”

Batting great Zaheer Abbas said the players need to realise that they are putting the future of cricket in Pakistan at stake with their shoddy performances.

“We have been playing badly since last year and and with all these controversies people are now becoming disheartened. These constant changes in the team and the controversies outside the field are also affecting the team’s ability to play good solid and sensible cricket,” Zaheer said.

Former leg-spinner Abdul Qadir said it was unfortunate but the national team was not moving forward because of the strange policies of the cricket board.

“South Africa is a top team but on a pitch which was good for batting and conditions were ideal for us and we even won the toss, how can you justify getting out for just 203 runs. They are problems in this team,” he said.

PTI