Pakistan vs Australia: Pakistan will go for result in decisive third Test, says Saqlain Mushtaq | Cricket News



LAHORE: Pakistan is ready to play “tough cricket” and will go for a result in the decisive third Test against Australia after the first two matches ended in draws, said head coach Saqlain Mushtaq on Friday.
It is Australia’s first tour to Pakistan since 1998 but the first two Tests in Rawalpindi and Karachi ended in draws, drawing criticism from all quarters regarding the pitches.
“I think after our fight back we are very optimistic and we will play hard to get a result and obviously we also want a result and to win this series. We are ready to play tough cricket in the final Test,” he said in a media interaction on Friday.
In the two Tests so far, eight centuries were scored — six by Pakistani batters and two by Australia in Karachi. Both games have produced over 2300 runs with 14 wickets falling in Pindi and 28 in Karachi.
Following the drawn result, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) summoned former ICC Academy head curator Toby Lumsden to oversee the preparations for the final game at Gaddafi Stadium starting Monday.
Saqlain admitted that the team management have made some mistakes in the preparation and planning for the series but they were human beings and learnt from their mistakes.
He, however, didn’t agree that the pitches for the first two Tests were not prepared to Pakistan’s strength.
“Yes the surface for the second Test was on a slower side but it ticked all the boxes for a memorable Test match. It fulfilled all requirements to have a good test as it had spin, reverse swing and uneven bounce. Both teams fought hard and made it a memorable Test match,” he said.
About the first Test pitch, Mushtaq said it became slower and slower because of the weather and also because the Australians also used the heavy roller.
“Frankly speaking if the weather had not played a part and we did not lose those 60-70 overs we would have got a great Test match maybe even a result.”
Mushtaq said Pakistan had created history the way they played over 1000 deliveries to draw the second Test in Karachi.
“I think we created history the way the second Test ended. Every player showed their character and self belief in each other,” the former Test off-spinner said.
“Lot of people said it was impossible for us to save the Test. We played more than 1000 deliveries and remember Australia is the no one Test side and the way they beat England 4-0 recently their confidence was sky high.
“I consider myself lucky to be head coach and feel proud of the way our players fought after the first innings collapse.”
Saqlain also said that centurion Muhammad Rizwan’s remarks after the match that his 100 runs and the 0 by tailender Nauman Ali were the same had touched his heart as it showed the players were wiling to fight till the end for the country.
Asked about the continued absence of experienced leg-spinner, Yasir Shah, Saqlain said the team was definitely missing his energy, experience and aggression.
“But the point is that he was with us in the camp before the series and the medical panel felt his fitness was not up to the mark and nor was he prepared for the series. He is a great asset for us and he is in our plans for the future. We have not put him aside when we need him, we will call him up provided he is match ready.”
Asked if Fawad Alam’s unorthodox batting stance was being exposed by the quality Australian bowlers, Saqlain said: “In my mind there is no problem at all with Fawad’s stance since he has scored runs against every opposition in the past with the same technique and I am sure he will also get runs against Australia.
“Unfortunately in the second Test he got an outstanding ball when he came out to bat.”


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