Pak vs SL: Abdullah Shafique likely to replace Fakhar Zaman against Sri Lanka

Former cricketers have been advising PCB to consider giving rest to Fakhar Zaman as he is unable to perform

By
Our Correspondent
Fakhar Zaman and Abdullah Shafique. — AFP/Files
Fakhar Zaman and Abdullah Shafique. — AFP/Files
  • Fakhar's performance matter of concern for PCB.
  • He has scored only 202 runs in last 12 innings.
  • Wasim advises Fakhar "to settle down on the wicket".


ISLAMABAD: Pakistan is considering bringing in Abdullah Shafique to replace out-of-form Fakhar Zaman in the playing XI against Sri Lanka in their second World Cup 2023 match which will be played tomorrow in Hyderabad, reported The News on Monday.

In the opening match of the ICC tournament, he got out cheaply against the Netherlands. Pakistan won the match but the batter's failure triggered a debate among the former cricketers and fans demanding a change. 

"Chances of single change are there for Pakistan's second match against Sri Lanka on Tuesday. There are no injury worries at this point in time and if that continues to be the case, we may see one change. Abdullah may replace Fakhar. The final decision, however, is yet to be taken as to whether the winning combination should be retained or Abdullah should take over Fakhar’s place. The decision is expected on the match day,” a source told the publication.

It must be noted that the left-hander has only scored 202 runs in his last 12 innings with 33 being the highest in May 2023 against New Zealand.

Zaman last scored a century in the 50-over format in April earlier this year in Rawalpindi. His performance has been a concern for the team management who are now forced to consider making a change.

Meanwhile, the team had a busy day on Sunday, undergoing a full session of training and nets at Hyderabad ahead of their second match against Sri Lanka at the same venue on Tuesday.

The team had three hours of session where all the squad members were seen batting, bowling, and getting fielding practice.

It was also reported that today’s session may be optional for the players.

What’s Fakhar Zaman’s problem?

Former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram has revealed the reasons behind the opening batter’s poor form.

Akram believes that Zaman doesn’t take time to settle down on the wicket, especially when he is out of form.

“Fakhar Zaman has been out of form for the past month and a half. He was with me in LPL as well, there too he struggled,” Akram said on a local sports channel.

“When you are out of form, the only way to improve things is by working on your technique and basics. You need to go out and middle a few balls before trying to hit big shots. Going after the bowling straight away won’t help you at all. I think this is the problem with Fakhar Zaman,” he added.

An imperfect start 

Pakistan began their campaign at the World Cup 2023 with a bang as they claimed an 82-run victory over the Netherlands at Hyderabad’s Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, India on Friday.

With this win, the Men in Green registered history by securing their first World Cup win on Indian soil.

Quick dismissals by the Green Shirts left the Dutch batters stumbling who were all-out for 205 runs, despite a steady start.