Chief selector, Inzamam-ul-Haq wants the Pakistan team to change its mindset and be more positive when they take on Australia in the three-match Test series from December 15 in Brisbane.
The veteran of 120 Tests appeared concerned with the scoring rate of the Pakistan batsmen in recent matches and in their three-day tour match against a weak Australian eleven in Cairns which ended with a big win for the touring side.
“Other teams have moved on and changed their mindset and way of playing cricket. We are still playing cricket of yesteryears and that is a concern for the selectors,” Inzamam told PTI.
Pakistan’s test captain, Misbah-ul-Haq plodded for 29 balls before falling for a nought in the tour match while Azhar Ali took 209 balls to score 82 against an inexperienced attack.
Inzamam said that Pakistan had to come out of the past and try to play cricket of the present era.
“Times have changed and so has cricket nowadays scoring and strike rates are as important as anything else,” he noted.
The former captain said that Pakistani batsmen were taking too many balls in their innings and they needed to change their mindset.
“When you are worrying about losing your wicket all the time then obviously you can’t play freely and our players need to realize this. They must realize this and see how other teams are playing even test cricket now.”
He also lamented that Pakistan had unncessarily lost the second Test against New Zealand last month at Hamilton.
“We should’ve just stuck to trying to draw the match on the final day instead of deciding to go for the 360 plus target after a good opening start. A draw would also have been satisfactory result for us after losing first test,” he said.
Inzamam, one of the batting greats produced by Pakistan, said a lot would depend on the form of Younis Khan in the Test series against Australia.
He said Pakistan had not won a Test series in Australia and playing down under was always a challenging task.
“We have a good team but we need to be more positive and attacking. Younis has to get runs that is important.”
Inzamam also said that left-arm pacer, Muhammad Aamir also needed to start delivering although it was not easy to make a comeback to international cricket after five long years.
“It is difficult to settle down again and start performing like one did in the past after five years. Aamir has not performed up to expectations as yet but he has lot of talent and potential and we know he can deliver,” he added.
Pakistan plays its first Test at Brisbane under lights.
Pakistan’s last Test win in Australia came in 1995 and since then it has been whitewashed in all Test series in 1999, 2005 and 2010.
Inzamam said Australia had staged a strong comeback after a long losing streak and they would be formidable opponents in the Tests.
“Still our team has the potential to beat any side. They must just play with freedom and without any fear of losing.”