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Pace Attack Will Be 'Totally Different' If We Get a Good Start, Says Azhar Ali

Pakistan captain Azhar Ali backed his young pace unit to bounce back and overcome the inexperience in the second Test against Australia beginning in Adelaide on Friday.

Cricketnext Staff |November 26, 2019, 3:08 PM IST
Pace Attack Will Be 'Totally Different' If We Get a Good Start, Says Azhar Ali

Pakistan captain Azhar Ali backed his young pace unit to bounce back and overcome the inexperience in the second Test against Australia beginning in Adelaide on Friday.

Pakistan pacers struggled in the first Test in Brisbane, with David Warner (154) and Joe Burns (95) adding 222 for the opening wicket and Marnus Labuschagne (185) scoring a big ton too. Pakistan's bowlers fought back later, with Australia losing their last seven wickets for 112 runs, but it was too little too late. Australia eventually won by an innings and five runs.

The three pacers who played in the Test, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Imran Khan and 16-year-old debutant Naseem Shah, have a combined experience of 15 Tests. Azhar believed they can come back strong if they get a good start.

"The young attack has a lot of potential, but you can’t buy experience," Azhar said. "It’s never easy in a place like Australia. They started off little shaky, but they came back strongly the next day, even though the Australian batsmen were really set. They came back strong and kept bowling in good areas after that. I believe if they manage to do that from the start of the innings, they’ll be a totally different attack after that."

Pakistan were in a decent position on the first day, having won the toss and their openers adding 75 including a wicketless first session. However, they lost four wickets for three runs after which they had to play catch up. Babar Azam (104) and Mohammad Rizwan (95) fought in the second innings but it was too late.

Azhar rued Pakistan's inability to cash in on the good position but said one shouldn't raise questions on their ability.

"When you play Test cricket in Australia, you cannot afford to go behind as it is very difficult to then catch up," Azhar said. “The way we won the toss and we played in the first session, without losing a wicket, that was an opportunity for us to go in front and take the initiative in the game. That chance we lost in the second session, and that made sure we could't reach the kind of total we needed to put pressure on them.

"It’s not fair to raise too many questions over our batsmen this early on. At times, a player can have a tough test, but that doesn’t make him a bad player. I have full faith on all the batsmen that they can score runs here."

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Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 5046 120
2 New Zealand 2829 109
3 England 4366 104
4 South Africa 3177 102
5 Australia 3672 102
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7071 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 8366 270
2 Australia 6986 269
3 England 5568 265
4 South Africa 4720 262
5 India 9349 260
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