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Pakistan may have the answers to the Aussie Challenge

The first test match between Australia and Pakistan is upon us and to me, it seems that Pakistan does have the resources to beat Australia in the Aussie backyard. For starters, their bowling line-up is the most penetrative, even more than that of South Africa and marginally better balanced that Australia’s bowling resources. Pakistan bowling has benefited from the return of some former players who had wandered away into the ICL and those who have made decent comebacks. With Mohammed Sami being added to the mix of Mohammed Asif, Umar Gul and Sohail Tanveer, along with the every-improving Mohammed Aamer, Pakistan’s arsenal is varied and penetrative if you consider that Saeed Ajmal is a very decent off-spinner. It should be noted that Australia would be missing the services of an injured Ponting and Michael Clarke too may not play all the matches. These are unarguably two of their best spin counterattacking batsmen and without them, the side would have to come to terms with the guile of Ajmal. The big concern lies with Pakistan's unreliable batting line-up that is known to crumble at the slightest hint of sustained, short-pitched bowling. None of their openers has overseas credibility and with Younis Khan unavailable due to some strange personal issues, the middle-order is very vulnerable to collapsing within 70-80 overs. With Peter Siddle and Bollinger in top bowling form, it would be difficult for the sub-continental batsmen to keep the balls out of their rib-cages and none of them are decent pullers of the short ball.

To some extent, the fact that Pakistan are coming off from a decent tour of New Zealand should help them get quickly familiarized with the kind of bowling that awaits them but then, the Kiwi bowling attack doesn’t match the Aussie bench in terms of pure aggression and horse-power. Still if one chooses to be optimistic, Pakistan's bowling alone can win them the series, provided internal issues are sidelined and cricket becomes the only focus for the team… otherwise, we are all too familiar with how crazy things can go with this team but yes, their uncertainty may well become their biggest weapon.

1 comment:

  1. So far, it seems that Pakistan just cannot get rid of its old habit of promising a lot and then failing to deliver. To make matters worse, they have chosen a very average captain in Mohammend Yousuf and the constant stories about the displeasure of the selectors and the team's divided stance over the inclusion of former skipper, Younus Khan, is not helping the cause.

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