Pakistan v Sri Lanka, Asia Cup 2016, Mirpur March 4, 2016

Waqar defends batsmen, praises Pakistan bowling unit


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'We should all back our boys' - Waqar

Pakistan coach Waqar Younis has said that his players have to motivate themselves as a special committee is formed back home to monitor Pakistan's performance and examine the selection process for the upcoming World Twenty20, following their early exit from the Asia Cup in Bangladesh.

Waqar has urged the country to rally behind his team ahead of their World T20 campaign in India, despite their recent performances, after Pakistan picked up a consolation win over Sri Lanka to end the round robin stage.

"This word, tehqiqat (investigation), isn't very pleasant," Younis said. "But the circumstances are such that such words will be used. I think there are far worse words being used in our media. But that's the way it is. You have to take it on the chin when you are in this business. I guess this is why everyone is trying their best to have a good World T20.

"We have to pick ourselves up, not only the team but even the management. Even the entire country I feel… We are going to a big tournament. You cannot really just put everyone down at all times and then send them to such a big event. I think it is about time that should we all back our boys as well as the management because all the backing will be required."

Younis admitted that they have problems with the top-order but he was impressed with the middle-order batsmen and the bowling attack led by Mohammad Amir, who took seven wickets at an average of 11.57. "We have not been very happy with the top-order but to be fair to them, it has been a tough outing for them if you consider the pitches or conditions here. It's been very difficult. The bowlers have had a good say especially with the new ball.

"So I think the most positive I would like to take is that our bowlers bowled really well. I am really impressed with Mohammad Amir's bowling. Irfan is coming really good. Wahab Riaz played today. We scored 50 in the first six overs but it came late. But we will go to the World T20 with this win.

"Sarfraz's batting has been the highlight. Umar Akmal has played well. Shoaib Malik has played well. The middle and lower-middle order, they've been pretty good. It is just that the top three batsmen have struggled in the matches before this match. But yeah, we have to really fix that."

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Farrukh Hussain on March 7, 2016, 6:00 GMT

    Mr waqar Younis did u ever produce or even corrected a bowler(wahab riaz) to produce genuine length n swing though u were master of it alas a good bowler not deserves to be called a coach by any means have mercy on team Pakistan

  • Aslam on March 6, 2016, 21:17 GMT

    No should expect Waqar to say anything else what he has said here. Maybe the fault lies in all of us. Maybe we ought to bring down our expectations of the team more than a few notches. Our team was a world beater once upon a time and that too, for a very short period. Our cricket team has mostly been, at best, above average having short bursts of excellence. To be fair we have always had excellent players in almost all our teams but their brilliance could not help us because of the other ordinary players. So let us not expect miracles from our players, most of whom lack sheer professionalism. The next time they lose badly we will not take it so hard.

  • Aamir on March 6, 2016, 20:26 GMT

    Since Waqr Younis became Pakistan coach we have achieved nothing but disappointments on a regular basis. He never said anything to motivate the before last many events we performed below average. WCup, 2011, WCup 2015, Champions Trophy.

  • Cricinfouser on March 6, 2016, 10:00 GMT

    Why Waqar is only putting Performance of players and Selection Committee at front ??? Why not Coach role??? Carrying the same coach in the T20 WC will not bring any different result. What will Waqar do different this time which he has not done earlier to bring better outcome??? Reasons are very simple - he has failed completely in both forms of game whether T20 or ODI as he himself lacks motivation, man management or Charisma to form Pak team as die hard cricketing unit. He deserves to be replaced immediately or should have the moral obligation and guts to step down. With Waqar in there nothing will change. He is hopeless mentor and poor cricketing brain.

  •   Daniyal Syed on March 5, 2016, 15:31 GMT

    Sorry to say Waqar, but we have absolutely have no confidence in you as a coach and the one dimensional fool that is Shahid Afridi.

  • Nischal on March 5, 2016, 14:55 GMT

    Problem with Pakistan batting is that Cricket has evolved and so has the batting as well. It's not just about 4s and 6s but also about keeping scoreboard ticking, taking the game as close as possible. Dhoni when he was new, everyone expected him to be a pinch hitter sort of batsman but he quickly realized that it won't take him too far. Now you see him he is less like Afridi and more like Michael Bevan taking 1s and 2s and building innings. Too bad Afridi never understood this part of the game. Same with other Pakistani batsmen either they block or they try to hit boundary. Nobody looks for 1s and 2s and keep scoreboard ticking. I am an Indian cricket fan but I couldn't resist posting this observation here.

  • Sharjil on March 5, 2016, 14:51 GMT

    I'm not going to bother reading this, maybe I will. But just reading the headline, i can tell Waqar is really asking for faith in him. I really hope Waqar is let go after the world cup, he's not been up to par at the bowling front, until Aamir showed up. If we recall our recent series we've played, other than the Asia cup, its been terrible. Waqar really hasn't done anything extra-ordinary or even satisfactory for us to keep him. Our team, it seems are full of Mafia, leading from the top by the Coach. He has been keeping Misbah and now Azhar Ali, who is also an extremely defensive Captains. His unwillingness of playing players in form and consistently asking for players that have been tried and failed or past their glory years (Insert: K. Akmal, Misbah,Hafeez etc). The day Pakistan starts playing players on merit, the way Australia does. We would be the number ONE team. That goes to the selectors/coaching/captains. Too many egos at hand.

  • Qazi Iqram on March 5, 2016, 14:36 GMT

    Why are they not ackowledging that fielding is also something that they need to work upon.

  • Zain on March 5, 2016, 12:43 GMT

    Everything is not all doom and gloom for Pakistan cricket. They just need to fix their batting and stop selecting bits and pieces players. Very often you see players in the Pakistan line-up, who shouldn't be there.

  • Shaz on March 5, 2016, 11:47 GMT

    My money is on pak to be withdrwan from t20 wc due to security.

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