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Pakistan team can make a strong comeback: Waqar Younis

The legendary former pacer revealed that the playing XI for the second Test had not been finalised yet

PHOTO: AFP

Pakistan’s bowling coach Waqar Younis, while talking to media personnel on Wednesday, claimed that Pakistan have the ability to bounce back into the series after their stunning defeat against England in the first Test at the Old Trafford in Manchester.

The legendary pacer revealed that the playing XI for the second Test, which will start at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton on Thursday, had not been finalised yet.

“Our team has the ability to make a comeback. We are currently discussing various options. We have not finalised the playing XI for the next match yet,” Younis said. “It was hard to digest our loss. We played well in many sessions. Just one or two were bad.”

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He also heaped praise on rookie pacer Naseem Shah while backing his bowlers to deliver in their future encounters.

“Naseem Shah does not have a lot of experience but he has a lot of skills. A fast-bowler needs passion. That is the most visible thing on the field. There has been no change in Naseem Shah’s bowling action,” he said.

“The fast-bowlers have performed well in the home series. We faced some issues in Australia but these bowlers will perform better in the future. The players will gain experience after playing some games. We are discussing the possibility of adding pacers such as Sohail Khan,” he added. “We did not relax after taking five wickets. Our plan was to take all 10 wickets. This sometimes happens in cricket. Sometimes it is just not your day.”

He also spoke about middle-order batsman Fawad Alam and backed the latter to do well, if given the opportunity during the second Test. 

“I do not know if Fawad Alam will get a chance in the next game but I do know that he will perform well if he does,” said.

The 48-year-old also opened up about the amount of pressure on skipper Azhar Ali as the leader and top-order batsman of the side.

“Captaining and playing in the top order are both very hard jobs. You have a lot of responsibility in that role. If we had won the match than we would not be questioning Azhar Ali’s performance,” he concluded.