Khushdil and Asif are one-dimensional: Mohammad Hafeez takes aim at Pakistan’s middle-order

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Khushdil and Asif are one-dimensional: Mohammad Hafeez takes aim at Pakistan’s middle-order

Former Pakistan captain Mohammad Hafeez has blamed Khushdil Shah and Asif Ali’s lack of innings building as the reason for Pakistan’s middle-order failures. The 41-year-old also said Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan should show more hunger for scoring runs with intent.

Former Pakistan captain Mohammad Hafeez has blamed Khushdil Shah and Asif Ali’s lack of innings building as the reason for Pakistan’s middle-order failures.

Khushdil and Asif do not rely on innings building and they are very one-dimensional players. Khushdil has a SR of 110 and we consider him an international hitter and that is not right. We need to get to the bottom of this situation,” Hafeez told Cricket Pakistan.

Hafeez also took aim at Pakistan’s middle-order’s ability to absorb pressure and build the innings if the openers fall early.

“We need to ask ourselves, do these players have the ability to absorb pressure? Can they build an innings if Babar and Rizwan fall early? We have selected these players based on the fact that our top-order takes time to settle, which is ridiculous,” Hafeez added.

The former all-rounder insisted that captain Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan remain their number one opening pair but should show more hunger for scoring runs with intent.

“I have said this before as well, Babar and Rizwan are the number one pair for Pakistan. They have helped Pakistan cricket win and grow. But if there is anything both players can improve upon, it is intent,” Hafeez said.

The 41-year-old further claimed that Pakistan’s approach is unfair to their middle-order while playing T20Is.

How is it possible for you to consume the six-over powerplay and still score 60-65 in the first 10 overs? Then the demand is on the middle-order to play with 12 NRR to push the score to a challenging total. This seems unfair to me,” he explained.

Pakistan now has its sights set on facing England in a seven-game home T20I series. The first match of the series is to be played in Karachi on September 20. The first four matches will be played in Karachi, with Lahore hosting the final three games of the series.

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