Youngsters proving mettle on global stage: Jalaluddin

Former cricketer praises Pakistan after impressive win over Zimbabwe

Youngsters proving mettle on global stage: Jalaluddin PHOTO: AFP

Pakistan defeated Zimbabwe in the opening match of the T20I tri-nation series in Harare on Sunday and former Pakistan cricketer Jalaluddin has showered praise on Sarfraz Ahmed’s men.

Pakistan thrashed Zimbabwe to register a comfortable 74-run win after a brilliant batting performance by Fakhar Zaman set up the visitors and impressive knocks by Shoaib Malik and man of the match Asif Ali ensured Pakistan post a strong-enough total for the hosts.

In the end, the target proved to be too much for the African side as they were bundled out for a mere 108 in 17.5 overs as Pakistan romped to an emphatic victory.

The win gives Pakistan the first points in the tri-nation series and also sets up a crunch encounter with Australia, who themselves have a lot to prove after getting thrashed on the England tour last month.

And Jalaluddin, who was all too pleased with what he saw on show, has credited the youngsters in the Pakistan squad for the win.

“This is a good start for the team; the win and the form of the players shows how much the team is ready to win the series,” Jalaluddin told The Express Tribune. “The young players have shown what they are capable of doing. This win will give them the much-needed confidence to face Australia.”

The 59-year-old also went on to praise the team management for giving the younger players a chance to prove their mettle.

“In the last series, Pakistan took a lot of young players but did not give them the chance to prove themselves, however, in this match, the management trusted the younger lot and they delivered,” he said.

Talking about the batting he was quick to point out that even though the opening failed, the way Fakhar Zaman took the innings was just great to watch. “He [Zaman] is playing the role of the perfect opener. Even if one opener falls, he stays there and helps the rest of the batsmen by his power-hitting. His strike rate shows his vision and that is good for Pakistan cricket,” he added.

Talking about how Mohammad Hafeez was not able to perform with the bat — he only made seven off eight balls, Jalauddin said that that all-rounder has to improve his batting otherwise his position in the side will come under jeopardy.

“He [Hafeez] did bowl well but his batting was missing and that is where he should work if he wants his place in the team. His action has been reported several times and we cannot say anything if it gets report again, then only his batting will be able to help him keep his place in the team,” he said.