This year’s two-match Test series against Sri Lanka in Pakistan’s backyard was seen as a way for the squad to clean up the mess that they made in March when they lost 1-0 to the Australians in their home Test series. In the end, they couldn’t take advantage of the opportunity that had presented itself. Read out the complete details about Pak vs SL down below.
Pak vs SL | A lesson learned
Imam-ul-Haq and Babar Azam went out to bat on day three of their second Test against Sri Lanka, but Sri Lankan spinners underlined why they are so dangerous at home. A lot of former Pakistani spinners used to do this when they were in their prime in Test cricket, and Prabath Jayasuriya did it again. It’s hard not to remember Abdul Qadir’s spinning red deliveries, or those of Mushtaq Ahmed and Saqlain Mushtaq (current head coach), or the unplayable Iqbal Qasim.
One time, it looked like Yasir would be a leg-break legend like Shane Warne, but he has since faded back into obscurity. Injuries, however, ruined Pakistan’s chances of long-term success with match-winning spinners. When Nauman made his Test debut in Karachi against South Africa, he proved that age is just a number by taking his first five-wicket haul. Nauman’s recent removal from the squad may have troubled the left-arm spinner, but back-to-back five-fers solidified Nauman’s permanent status in the team.
“If you see, 1-1 result is not too bad, considering how Sri Lanka treats even big teams in their home,” said Bhatti.
“But they could have won the series, not by 2-0 but 1-0, had they made good choices. Firstly, they dropped Fawad Alam to adjust Agha Salman then benched the most experienced Azhar Ali in the second Test. I am not against Agha Salman, his performance or his talent. But you shatter the confidence [of players] by dropping them after a couple of series. You can’t build combinations in this way,” reiterated Bhatti.
Only Babar’s half-century remained the same, however. It was the right-handed batsman’s 23rd Test fifty. As of this writing, he is third in the International Cricket Council’s Test rankings. For all of his match-winning ability, Abdullah Shafique was unable to maintain it, making cricket pundits question his place in the pantheon.
In the ICC Test Championship, things Pakistan dropped to fifth place in the ICC Test Championship standings after their most recent defeat. This year’s ICC Test Championship finals will not be Pakistan’s first opportunity to compete in the final. When England and New Zealand come to town for a three-match Test series in late November, early December, and early January, Pakistan will be stretched thin.