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Thursday Sep 08, 2016

Removing Azhar Ali as captain will demoralize him: Atiq uz Zaman

MANCHESTER: Pakistan’s former Test cricketer Atiq ur Zaman feels that comparing Pakistan’s ODI team with the Test team would be unfair with Azhar and co.

Talking to Geo in Manchester, where he was coaching Lancashire’s junior side, Atiq said that removing Azhar Ali from captaincy after this series would demoralize the opening batsman.

“One shouldn’t have expected the same performance from ODI team as displayed by the Test team. Our ODI team is inconsistent and inexperienced,” he said.

“The basic difference between Pakistan’s Test and ODI team is consistency in players’ selection. Our Test team is gelled for more than five years now, while in ODIs we have experienced a lot of combinations and we aren’t sure about who the top five batsmen would be,” he said.

Atiq says that he doesn’t agree with demands of removing Azhar Ali as ODI captain.

“He is performing, he has scored some good runs and removing him would demoralize him as a player as well. Best would be to give him couple of more series, but telling in advance that these would be his last if he fails to deliver,” the former Test Cricketer, who is now a qualified coach.

Lauding performances of young Hassan Ali and Imad Wasim, the former wicket-keeper said that these two can serve Pakistan Cricket in longer run.

“Imad has improved a lot recently, PCB has invested in him and he has evolved as a proper team man and is performing in every game.

Hassan Ali is also good, he has proved his mettle and he can be very good with bat as well,” said Atiq.

The former wicket-keeper added that head coach Mickey Arthur should spend some time in Pakistan and analyses the players performing in domestic tournament.

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