Babar Azam
Babar Azam Credits: Twitter

Former Pakistani cricketer Azhar Ali expects three crucial Pakistani batters to have a stand-out game for Pakistan in the forthcoming second Test against Australia in Melbourne, which is slated from December 26 to 30. The Men in Green batter struggled to make an impact in the first test in Perth.

Australia crushed Pakistan in the opening Test match at Perth in a display of overwhelming domination throughout the series. New-look Pakistan side captained by Shan Masood after Babar Azam stood down as captain following the World Cup 2023, struggled to keep up with Australia’s pace attack on a difficult ground with varying bounce and movement.

Speaking to the media, Azhar Ali expressed his delight at seeing the improved performances of Pakistan’s batters and expressed hope that one of Babar Azam, Imam ul Haq, or Abdullah Shafique will score a double century in the next game like him, and believes that Pakistan bowlers must restrict Australia for a below par score in the game.

“I have a lot of expectations from Babar Azam, Imam ul Haq, and Abdullah Shafique in the Melbourne Test. I am hopeful that one of these batters would be able to score a double century in Melbourne like I did.”

Azhar Ali
Azhar Ali Credits: Twitter

“I have confidence that Pakistani batters can post scores around 450, 475 but it is important for Pakistan that the bowlers are able to bowl out Australia for not a bigger total,” Azhar Ali said.

With a stunning 360-run victory over Pakistan, Australia has slid to second place on the ICC World Test Championship points standings and the team will be keen on extending their winning run on home soil to add up more points in the WTC 2023-25 cycle.

It Has Been So Long That Pakistani Bowlers Had Bowled Australia Out Twice – Azhar Ali

Azhar Ali has emphasized the Pakistan team’s primary issue in failure against Australia, believing that the Men in Green were unable to bowl out Australia in a single test match for a long time and that the pitch was considerably more difficult for Pakistan to bat on in the first test, chasing a tall target of 450 runs.

“There were matches, where batters had scored good runs but our bowlers were unable to bowl Australia out in those matches, it has been so long that Pakistani bowlers had bowled Australia out twice in a match, and this is where the problem is,” Azhar Ali said.

Pakistan Cricket Team
Pakistan Cricket Team Credits: Twitter

“People would say that Pakistan was bowled out for 89 in Perth but I think by the time Pakistan’s inning started, the wicket had become very difficult with an uneven bounce, and knowing Australia’s attack, I think that collapse was not unexpected,” Azhar Ali added.

The visiting team was dismissed for 89 runs while attempting to chase the home team’s imposing total of 450 runs, resulting in a massive 360-run loss in the match and Pakistan would be keen on turning things around on the Boxing Day test.