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‘Bowling, fielding alarmingly poor’

Sports

May 16, 2019

KARACHI: Only fifteen days are left before the 2019 World Cup, and the poor preparation of Pakistan for the event has been exposed, especially in the fielding and bowling departments, as fielders are dropping and the bowlers are allowing the rivals to go past 350 runs repeatedly.

In the third ODI, Shaheen Afridi, Imad Waseem and Babar Azam dropped catches which even club-level cricketers would easily take. Pakistan’s former Test and ODI cricketer Jalaluddin said that all analysis about Pakistan cricket team had been changed. “We were thinking that our batting line would struggle there and bowling would be our main weapon but the situation is totally different,” he told ‘The News’.

He said that it was disappointing that the team management had failed to address these problems although they had been sent to England around a month before the World Cup. “Why can’t the team management rectify these things,” he said.

He said that the body language of the players showed that they lacked mental toughness which is a must for big matches. “Losing two matches is one thing, but how easily the players are surrendering is quite worrying. If they lose after showing fighting spirit, it could have been acceptable,” said the former fast bowler.

Jalal said that Pakistan’s bowlers completely failed to contain England’s batsmen. He suggested that the team management should focus on fielders and bowlers metal toughness and give them confidence.

He said there was need to work on fitness of the players. “It is the duty of bowling and fielding coaches to work hard in the remaining days on players and give them confidence and make them mentally tough for the coming matches. In the cold weather of England, there are fitness issues. Players get injured. Thus, the team management must prepare accordingly,” said Jalal.

He also said that the pitches could be different for the World Cup matches. “They have prepared batting-friendly tracks for this series. The ball is not swinging at all. Our batsmen should know the wickets may not be easy during the World Cup,” he added.

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