Former England captain Michael Vaughan has said that the Azhar Ali-led Pakistan Test team will be the real challenge for the Joe Root led England side. The two teams are set to play the first Test of the three-match Test series from 5 August.
A total of 29 Pakistani players have arrived in England in different batched amid the ongoing pandemic. Of these, selectors have shortlisted 20 players for the squad for the first Test in Manchester. Currently, the visitors are in Derbyshire and will arrive at Trafford on 1st August.
Pakistan is better Test team than the West Indies: Michael Vaughan
Michael Vaughan reckons Pakistan as a better Test side than the West Indies, who had recently lost the Test series against England. The former skipper is eagerly waiting for the upcoming challenge for his countrymen against the visitors. He hopes for better competition.
“From an England perspective, it is a good step up. I am not disregarding the West Indies at all, but Pakistan is a better Test match team than the West Indies,” Vaughan told Cricbuzz in a video uploaded on their YouTube channel.
“So I am really looking forward to that series. It should be a ripper. Pakistan could come here and shock the England team if the English side play like they did in the first Test against West Indies at Southampton.”
Pakistan will challenge England: Vaughan
Jason Holder-led West Indies had struggled to set up big partnerships, except the first Test. But Vaughan believes that with the presence of Babar Azam and Azhar Ali in the Pakistan team, they would be tough to break which would be the real challenge for England.
“Babar Azam and Azhar (Ali) are two right-hand batsmen of high quality, who know how to play in England conditions. If Pakistan bats first and I am sure that is their plan and get scores on the board, they will really challenge this England side,” Michael Vaughan said.
In the recently ended Test series against West Indies, England clinched the trophy winning the series by 2-1. They had lost the first Test match but consecutively won the next two matches. Stuart Broad and Ben Stokes were the two-star performers for the host. The pacer Broad created history during the series picking his 500th Test wicket while Ben Stokes had played match-saving century in the second Test.