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Lower middle order, the difference between Pakistan, South Africa in test series: Inzimam

F.P. Report

LAHORE: Former test captain and legendary batsman Inzimam ul Haq has said that consistent batting performance from the lower middle order of Pakistan cricket team proved to be the difference in Pakistan’s clean sweep of South African cricket team in the recently concluded test series.

“Muhammad Rizwan and Faheem Ashraf scored consistently in the lower middle order while Hassan Ali, Yasir Shah and Nauman Ali also contributed to the lower order throughout the two-test match series,” Inzimam ul Haq said in his review of the Pak-SA test series on PCB Digital. Pakistan won the series 2-0 against South Africa and improved their ranking in the ICC Test Championship with elevation to the fifth position by earning five points. It is also Pakistan’s first test series after 18 years.

Hailing Pakistan cricket team for defeating South Africa in a home series after almost two decades, he said the young test side deserved accolades for exhibiting the best skills at home grounds.

Terming the clean-sweep against SA a result of team work, the former middle order batsman said Pakistan cricket team performed well in all three departments including batting, bowling and fielding. “Superb catching on the filed, fine batting from Fawad Alam and Muhammad Rizwan in both tests, while excellent bowling from spinners in the first test match and fast bowlers Hasan Ali and Shaheen Shah Afridi in the second test match won the series for Pakistan,” he remarked.

He said Muhammad Rizwan improved his batting skills with every passing day and his ability to post big totals on the board while batting with the lower order is remarkable, adding that Rizwan’s performance against South Adrica remained outstanding besides good batting display during away series in Australia, England and New Zealand.

On Hasan Ali, Inzimam said First-Class cricket has a special role in improving and polishing skills of players, adding that Hasan Ali is vivid proof how first-class cricket help him regain fitness, form and rhythm. He said Hasan Ali gave an outstanding bowling performance during the second test match against South Africa in Rawalpindi while he was ably supported by fast bowler Shaheen Shah Afridi.

The former captain also acknowledged the hard work put in by the team management, adding that the series was important for the trio of Waqar Younis, Misbah ul Haq and Younis Khan. He said the experienced cricketers maintained their patience and guided the youngsters well to victory against experienced South African test side.