Pakistan v South Africa, 2nd Test, Dubai, 1st day October 23, 2013

Whatmore 'very frustrated' with batting mistakes


Pakistan are likely to receive an Alex Ferguson-style hairdryer treatment from their coach Dav Whatmore, who admitted it was "very frustrating" to see his team go from dominating in Abu Dhabi to being dominated in Dubai. Whatmore said he would apply tough love with minimal sympathy because he held his charges responsible for their own downfall.

"It wasn't according to plan. We expected the opposition to come back strong but I don't think they did. We orchestrated most of our dismissals ourselves," Whatmore said. "I am trying to get a reason for it, whether its complacency or whether they thought they could carry on from 400 runs where they left off."

When asked whether he would admonish them, Whatmore was frank. "You need to do what you need to do and they have to allow me to do that. When it's time to be firm, you have to do that. They're expecting that. We will be having a little talk. We need to get it off our chests."

Special words will be reserved for Shan Masood and Azhar Ali, who made small starts and before being dismissed. "I am pretty angry with those two. You can't spend time and get a foundation and then get out when they did," Whatmore said.

Ali was out lbw, playing across the line to Morne Morkel to extend a lean run that has stretched from the Zimbabwe tour. Masood, who appeared to have settled in nicely after an hour of watchful batting, became Imran Tahir's first victim. He was the "lucky" wicket, as Whatmore called it, bowled off the inside edge after being drawn forward by the legspinner and the wicket sparked Tahir's five-for.

Although there was some turn in the surface as early as day one, Whatmore believed Pakistan flattered Tahir to some extent. "We played against him in a practice match in Kimberley earlier this year where he picked up wickets but he also got knocked around a bit," Whatmore said. "He did bowl pretty well. His first wicket was lucky and then he went on from there. We need to improve second time round."

Before Pakistan can even consider batting again, they need to fight their way back into the match by dismissing the rest of South Africa's line-up cheaply. Whatmore believes it can be done but only if Pakistan show more discipline. "We really need to pull the proverbial out to get back into this match," he said. "We still have to get another seven wickets. If we can do that in a reasonable time, then we will hopefully be able to bat at some point tomorrow. And then we need to bat and bat and bat."

Instead of identifying a score for Pakistan to bowl South Africa out for, Whatmore is thinking about the kind of lead they need to have to set South Africa a second-innings target. "[A score of]150 came into my mind. But I am not sure. We will know a bit more tomorrow," he said.

Recent history suggests Pakistan may need a bigger lead. After being bowled out for 99 by England in February last year, Pakistan went on to win the match by dismissing their opposition for 141 and then scoring 365 in their second innings. England had to chase 324 and fell 71 runs short, with Pakistan's spinners sharing six wickets between them in the second innings.

Whatmore is using that win as inspiration but South Africa are 29 ahead with plenty of batting to come. He knows the spinners will need something substantial to work: "It will be nice to have a reasonable bank of runs. Then the plan is for the spinners to come in."

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Gowtham on October 24, 2013, 9:12 GMT

    A coach who says 1-0 is as good as 2-0 deserves this.

  • Bobby on October 24, 2013, 6:10 GMT

    Imran Tahir did well. He deserves a praise, however, it should be seen in context. It was on a helpful pitch against an average batting line up. Pakistani batting line up is suffering from selectors mistakes. How can they drop Taufeeq Umer who has his best average against SA? Same batsman who scored a fine double hundred against SL. It makes no sense! Imran Tahir should also be using caution making statements. His statements will not go well with average Pakistani fan. He might be gained SA citizen by virtue of marrying a SA woman, however, he still comes to Abdul Qadir for tips. As a reference, Imran Tahir should learn from Fawad Ahmad who has held his compsure in Australia. If anything, Imran Tahir's statements will fire Pakistani batsmen and they may not have Salim Mailk, Javed Miandad, Inzemam Ul Haq or Saeed Anwar who could destroy any spinner, but there are still very fine players of spin such as Younis Khan who has mastered likes of Anil Kumble! It is one spell.Lets wait and see

  • Mashuq on October 24, 2013, 5:29 GMT

    Of course Pakistan fans are disappointed - I am too. But looking outside instead of inside is typical of those who set themselves up to fail. Spot on @SurlyCynic on (October 23, 2013, 19:25 GMT); @Khurram S Chaudhry on (October 23, 2013, 16:44 GMT). Whatmore himself must have had an inkling of what was to come, so agree @mazdonal on (October 23, 2013, 20:14 GMT).

  • Dummy4 on October 24, 2013, 2:22 GMT

    What a shame for Pakistan team. I never expected so low score. My expectation was at least 350 runs. Let us see how much lead they allow South Africa in their first innings and then fight back in the second innings to save the match at lease to a draw.

  • Sanjay on October 24, 2013, 1:02 GMT

    Was Whatmore frustrated about mistakes or the fact that docotred pitches doesnot work against the world champions

  • Dummy4 on October 23, 2013, 23:11 GMT

    younis khan said two days ago he wants go out with a bang, and he does not know why he was cut from ODI, I guess now he knows because he went out with a bang

  • Dummy4 on October 23, 2013, 22:44 GMT

    Pathetic performance by Pakistani batsmen. Pakistan desperately need betting coach whoes priority should be two prone, first to prepare the solid openers, secondly to prepare tail to bat too. It is amazing to watch that some of the lower order batsmen don't even know how to hold the bat. Morever, our top order batsmen should be tought to play their shots in V-shape rather getting tempted and offer catches behind the wicket.

  • Qaasim on October 23, 2013, 21:51 GMT

    Agree that all batsman (barring Misbah) threw their wickets away ... But Whatmore has to be one of the worst coaches to coach Pakistan, one day he says 1-0 is as good as 2-0 the next day he complains about the way they got out. Seriously thats what happens when you become complacent and are a defensive thinker ... Besides I believe it was Arjuna Ratunga who warned Pcb about appointing Whatmore as coach. (Well if only the pcb listened).

    Seriously lets get rid of Whatmore and get Waqar as bowling coach, keep Founatin as fielding coach and get Zaheer Abbas as batting coach/head coach and watch the difference.

  • Dummy4 on October 23, 2013, 20:44 GMT

    It's not Pakistan's but it is Karachi B team batting lineup. Why players like Fawad Alam, Umar Akmal, Umar Amin, Harris Sohail, Sami Aslam are ignored again and again. Just because Misbah and selectors don't like them or they don't belong to a particular city.

  • kamran on October 23, 2013, 20:40 GMT

    Coach, Pak batsmen should have a plan against Tahir. He is the only specialist spinner South Africa has and it is no brainier that he was coming to rescue #1 test playing team on spinning wickets.