Lack of aggression responsible for Pakistan's whitewash in Australia: Inzamam
Karachi [Pakistan], Jan. 8 (ANI): Pakistan chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq has done a post-mortem of his team's lack-lustre performance in the recently concluded three-Test series against Australia, saying the team's batsmen lacked aggression while the bowlers might have been fatigued in the series Down Under.
Inzamam, however, expressed hope that the team would perform better in the five-match ODI series with the inclusion of many fresh and talented players in the squad.
"First of all we couldn't play well under pressure and twice our batsmen failed to hold their nerve for even two sessions of the day which is quite unfortunate," the Dawn quoted the chief selector as saying.
"Even when they were in strong position, our batsmen could not show aggression. In Brisbane they scored with an average of 3.1 and were even slower in Melbourne. The Australians on the other hand were aggressive, scoring at times at almost eight runs an over."
"When you go on the defensive, it allows the opposition bowlers to dominate you and that's what happened with our team," he added.
The former Pakistan skipper asserted that their key batsman like Younis Khan, Asad Shafiq and others played just a couple of good knocks in the three Test series and only Azhar Ali, the team's ODI skipper, was consistent with more good knocks.
"As for Misbah, he failed to play even a single good innings.Now if that is the standard of our consistency, it is not good enough at the international level," Inzamam said.
"Our bowlers might have been experiencing fatigue as no bowler could take five wickets in an innings which was sorry to see," he added. "Our main bowlers have been playing regularly in the last three series and the fatigue could have affected their performance."
The 46-year-old further highlighted that the team have been overtly relying on leg-spinner Yasir Shah, who had emerged as their main bowler in the past few series.
"But he failed miserably in Australia and generally all our bowlers conceded too many runs," Inzamam pointed out. "I feel that the bowlers, if they were not getting wickets, should have at least tried to control the flow of runs but that did not happen."
The chief selector, when asked why Misbah-ul-haq looked out of sorts on the field despite being a mentally strong person during the entire Test series, said the pressure doubled up on the Test skipper because of the team's performance as well as his own struggle with the bat.
"Look, when your team is not performing and you are also struggling with the bat, the pressure is doubled and Misbah is also passing through the same situation," he said.
The head of selectors also hinted the fact that head coach Mickey Arthur could not stay for a longer period with Pakistan.
But Inzamam added that during the Pakistan Super League (PSL), he would sit with the South African to short-list the best boys from the back up pool and will hold a training camp for them in Lahore.
"Yes, we can introduce new faces in the Pakistan team in the coming series, but only after polishing them in the training camp at Lahore which should enable them to face international pressure with more authority and composure," Inzamam said.
Inzamam also spoke about the morale of the ODI team ahead of the five-match series against the Steve Smith led-side, saying it was up to captain Azhar and head coach Arthur how they work with the boys to prepare them for the tough assignment.
"But we have a good number of new and fresh players Down Under for the ODI series and it should be treated like a new challenge, though it will not be easy to shrug off the Test whitewash.
The five-match series will begin on January 13 at the Gabba and will end on January 26 at the Adelaide Oval. Following the 3-0 whitewash which culminated with a 220-run defeat in Sydney on Saturday, Pakistan has slipped two places to fifth position in the latest ICC Test Team Ranking.
The Misbah-ul-Haq-led side lost five points to finish with 97 points after the series, just one point ahead of New Zealand and Sri Lanka. It was the sixth consecutive Test loss for Pakistan including a 0-2 loss to New Zealand in a preceding series.(ANI)