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‘Start working on their strike rates’ – Former skipper Younis Khan advices Pakistan after Ireland defeat

'Start working on their strike rates' - Former skipper Younis Khan advices Pakistan after Ireland defeat

Younis Khan (Photo Source – Getty Images)

The recent defeat against Ireland in the first T20I of the three-match series has raised concerns over the strike rates of Pakistan’s batters, Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan. Former Pakistan greats Younis Khan and Rashid Latif have weighed in on the issue, opening up about the duo’s approach and the overall state of affairs within the team.

Ireland’s comprehensive five-wicket victory over Pakistan in the opening T20I encounter has sparked a debate about the batting strategies of the visitors. Despite Azam’s half-century and Iftikhar Ahmed’s late flourish, Pakistan’s total of 182 proved inadequate against the hosts led by Andy Balbirnie’s stellar 77.

Former Pakistan captain Younis Khan, the architect of the country’s 2009 T20 World Cup triumph, has advised Azam, Rizwan, and Fakhar Zaman to adapt to the demands of modern T20 cricket. He spoke about how the senior batters need to work on improving their strike rates and capitalize on the powerplay overs more effectively.

“I think our top-order batters like Babar, Rizwan, Fakhar need to now start working on their strike rates and make better use of the power play,” Younis said at a function in Karachi.

Khan emphasized the importance of versatility in the shortest format, urging players to be prepared to bat at any position and bowlers to be ready for high-pressure situations. “I think our top-order batters like Babar, Rizwan, Fakhar need to now start working on their strike rates and make better use of the power play,” Younis added.

Also Read: Ireland register shock win in Dublin to kick off series

Don’t think Babar should have expected the white ball captaincy: Rashid Latif

Meanwhile, Rashid Latif, another former Pakistani cricketer, believes that the frequent changes in captaincy have disrupted the team’s environment. He questioned the decision to remove Shaheen Shah Afridi as the T20I captain after just one series, suggesting that it may have unsettled the current skippers’ leadership.

“I don’t think Babar should have expected the white ball captaincy again after the board removed Shaheen Shah Afridi as captain after just one series,” he said on his YouTube channel.

Also Read: Andy Balbirnie reflects on Ireland’s dramatic win over Pakistan

The defeat against Ireland comes as a setback for Pakistan, who recently managed a 2-2 draw in the T20I series against a depleted New Zealand side at home. With the arrival of Gary Kirsten as the new head coach, the side will be seeking to restore stability within the dressing room. Kirsten’s experience of working with sub-continental players during his tenure with the Indian team and in the Indian Premier League could prove invaluable in addressing the concerns raised by the former greats.

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