Raja slams Pakistan ‘so-called’ experimentation, Latif hints at off-field issues

The Black Caps lead the five-match series by 2-1

Raja slams Pakistan ‘so-called’ experimentation, Latif hints at off-field issues PHOTO: FILE

Former Pakistan cricketers have voiced their concerns over the national team's recent strategies and off-field issues after their loss to New Zealand in the fourth T20I on Friday.

Former cricketer and PCB chairman, Ramiz Raja criticized the team's approach, labeling the changes as "so-called experimentation." He highlighted the fact that the same players are involved, but their roles and positions have been altered. 

"There's experimentation happening here, 'so-called experimentation'. The same players are still involved, just their positions have been changed. Some are put on the bench, while others are given a chance to play," Ramiz said while talking on his YouTube channel.

Ramiz also stressed the importance of focusing on winning matches instead of using the excuse of testing the bench strength. He questioned the rationale behind these decisions, suggesting that the team is using them to justify subpar performances. 

"It is very important that the Pakistan team focuses on winning right now, rather than giving the excuse that they are testing bench strength. They're trying to assess the skills of some players, which is why they are justifying their below par performance that if we lose the match, please bear with us," he further added.

Meanwhile, former Pakistan cricketer Rashid Latif hinted at possible off-field distractions affecting the team's performance. He emphasized that focusing on matters outside the game can detract from players' abilities to perform during matches.

“When you are playing outside the ground, then you won’t be able to perform on the field during a match. I can say this for certain and I’m sure people can understand what I’m trying to say,” Latif said.

It is worth noting that Pakistan's hopes of winning the T20I series against New Zealand were dashed after suffering their second defeat in the five-match series. 

Despite coming close to chasing down the target, Pakistan fell short by four runs. In the final over, all-rounder Imad Wasim was unable to guide the team to victory, leaving Pakistan with a total of 174/8 in response to New Zealand's 178/7.

The Black Caps lead the series 2-1 and the last match is set to be played in Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore on Saturday.