PAK vs SL 2017: Mohammad Yousuf Wants Pakistan to Eye More Dominance in ODIs
Former Pakistan captain and batting mainstay Mohammad Yousuf has urged Sarfraz Ahmed-led side to rely on their strength, in a bid to dominate Sri Lanka in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) during the ongoing bilateral series.
“The Pakistan is filled with a great mix of youth and experience,” Yousuf was quoted as saying by Express Tribune.
Pakistan is bound to face Sri Lanka in the second One-day international on Monday; the hosts would go into the game with a lot of enthusiasm after convincingly winning the first ODI of the five-match series.
The 43-year-old batting stalwart Yousuf stated Men in Green must go hard at the start while focusing on their top-notch game after leading the series 1-0.
“Pakistan would have won by a bigger margin otherwise and it might come to haunt them if they do it again,” Yousuf maintained.
Earlier, the hosts were routed in the recently-concluded two-match Test series, as 39-year-old Rangana Herath broke the back of Pakistan batting line-up. With second ODI scheduled at the Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi, Yousuf believes playing with such authority and control would be the key for Pakistan – to go up 2-0 in the 50-over format.
High on confidence, Sarfraz has further decided to play with the same eleven, as 83-run win has allowed Pakistan – to breathe a sigh of relief after all-round show helped the hosts – to continue their impressive run, in the ODI format.
“I believe they will win the second ODI as well,” Yousuf further added.
Since, lifting their maiden ICC Champions Trophy title on June 18 against arch-rivals India, Pakistan is focusing on to improve its ranking in the limited-overs cricket. Middle-order batsman Babar Azam smashed a fine hundred, as Shoaib Malik played a significant role to help Pakistan in the five-match opener.
While lavishing praise on left-handed Fakhar Zaman, who played a significant role for Pakistan in the United Kingdom, Yousuf asserted the batsman has shown much promise and could go a long way owing to his scoring pace at the start of the innings.
“He has been a good opening batsman for the team. If he is supported from the other end, he can score big and quickly, which can give the team good start,” Yousuf further added.
On the other side, Yousuf expressed concern over struggling opener Ahmed Shehzad and urged him to perform.
Yousuf revealed unimpressive Shehzad is struggling to perform since being hit on his helmet during the Test match against New Zealand.
“He has been struggling to score runs ever since he was hit by the ball,” Yousuf remarked.
Before the blow, the right-handed batsman Shehzad was playing an aggressive brand of cricket at the top felt Yousuf.
As UAE has been the forte for Pakistan since being deprived of international cricket back home and Yousuf feels the spinners have more responsibility on their shoulders to tighten the grip on distinct opponents during middle-overs.
Yousuf added the fast-bowling department has to show a lot of promise with the emergence of prominent Hasan Ali. After making his debut in 1998, Yousuf played 288 ODIs and 90 Tests followed by three Twenty20 international appearances.
The Lahore-based Yousuf’s batting average in Tests was 52.29 and 41.71 in the 50-over format.
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