Zimbabwe v Pakistan, 2nd ODI, Harare August 29, 2013

'Keeping it simple' works for Amin and Pakistan

ESPNcricinfo staff

Umar Amin, the Pakistan middle-order batsman, has said his team had a simple plan coming into Thursday's game against Zimbabwe: "play to potential to win the game". Pakistan entered the contest one match down and were in a do-or-die situation. Their 90-run win means the series goes to a decider on Saturday.

Pakistan lost the opening one-dayer on Tuesday by seven wickets, their first defeat in the past 15 years to Zimbabwe. They came back strongly, though, with Mohammad Hafeez leading the way with a dominating, unbeaten 136 and Umar Amin playing the supporting act with a pivotal half-century to lift Pakistan to 299.

"After losing the first game there was some pressure on us but the way we bounced back today shows that we are a great team," Amin said. "Everybody was focused on today's game and wanted to win. The plan was simple, to play to our potential. Sometime it does get little bit difficult, because such defeats are remembered for long. So it was crucial, and also we had to win to keep the series alive.

"We knew they would come strong at us and we would need to play at our best. The game plan was simply to stick to the basics though, and do the best we could to win."

Pakistan were in some trouble at one point, at 84 for 3, with both openers as well as captain Misbah-ul-Haq dismissed. Amin thereafter produced a 129-run fourth-wicket partnership with Mohammad Hafeez to give Pakistan a strong total. For Amin, who debuted in 2010, this was his first half-century in his eighth ODI, his 59 coming off 71 balls with six boundaries including a six before he was run out.

"If you talk about my batting, the situation demanded me to stick in there and get used to the conditions," Amin said. "They are not as pacey as our bowlers, but still they stuck with the basics, hit the right areas and utilised the conditions well. They didn't give us easy balls to hit boundaries, but you always have a game plan against any bowling and for me it was simple - to stay there and make the best out of my good start. In the end I got my first international fifty and it's a great feeling."

Pakistan were wary of Zimbabwe after their successful chase on Tuesday, and with the openers repeatedly doing well in the limited-overs matches so far on the tour, Pakistan were keen for early breakthroughs. "Of course the target was to get the openers out as quickly as we could because we knew they are the ones in form," Amin said. "So it was crucial to get the wickets of Masakadza and Sibanda, that was what was required at the time."

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  • imran on August 31, 2013, 14:12 GMT

    umar amin, haris sohail, umar akmal, nasir, ahmed shehzad, shoaib maqsood, asad shafiq are the future batting stars of Pakistan cricket so d selectors must give them a proper run and not discard them after a few failures

  • Arvind on August 30, 2013, 20:50 GMT

    What is with these Pakistan wicketkeepers,they chirp so much..it just irritate us viewers.Especially in this series Sarfaraz is oftenly shouting to the pakistan bowlers as if he is the coach and captain of the team..he is giving tips to ajmal,irfan and co..what is wrong with this guy...neither he scores nor he keep wickets well..but yes he keeps barking...throw him out of the team..bring kamran akmal...he is atleast mature and know the game well then this fella..may he recover soon. And about Pakistan's Kohli..Jamshed...he is not anywhere near to him..he is miles behind him in batting technique,fitness,fielding....There are very much likeable characters in this team though like hafeez,misbah,afridi,irfan..Umar amin and Shehzad is a nice guy.Ajmal is being let down by his ego.

  • Joe on August 30, 2013, 18:00 GMT

    Mediocre player!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Bakht on August 30, 2013, 10:07 GMT

    Unlike India, Pakistan has no shortage of "fast" bowlers, so we need to put stress on batting

    Umer Amin has the talent and temperament, something is classy about him. I like that coaches, captains and selectors are putting their faith in him. He has been Run-Out many times during his short career, which is unfortunate.

    Also, I believe that they should persist with Jamshed, he has massive amount of talent and can end the opening worries for team Pakistan. I am not too sure about Shehzad though, he has the right attitude, but lacks the technique.

    And it is ok to brag against Zimbabwe, India's most players raised their averages against minnows too.

    Example: Kohli, the Indian superstar completely failed against the likes of Junaid Khan, three out of three times!

  • Dummy4 on August 30, 2013, 9:23 GMT

    i dont think umar amin has got more potential than maqsood & haris, if you compare their list a stats. but preferred by management as i think they want him to do a bit of medium pace bowling. though wasim akram totally disagree that he is anywhere near an allrounder. but they should give him some overs to see if he can do that.

    anyway this was a good innings. he played with maturity and lot of confidence. 1st 50 and infact 1st significant innings in odis. it will improve his confidence alot.

    hope to see some more good innings from him.

  • Dummy4 on August 30, 2013, 7:28 GMT

    Will see what you and Hafeez will do against S.A You can't hit sixes your hit just clear circle. Hafeez can play against players of calibre ZIm,Ban,etc Totally flopped player against other sides. Cricket now a days demands quite a lot. Poor selection and ignored many talented players.

  • Ibrahim on August 30, 2013, 7:23 GMT

    My team for future at least 4 years : 1 : Ahmad Shehzad 2 : NAsir Jamshed 3 : Muhammad Hafeez 4 : Umar Akmal (WK) 5 : Umar Amin 6 : Shahid Afridi (capt) 7 : Abdul Razzaq 8 : Umar Gul 9 : Saeed Ajmal 10 : Muhammad Irfan 11 : Junaid Khan Reserve Bench : 1 : Asad Shafiq 2 : Hammad Azam 3 : Adur Rehman 4 : Shoaib Maqsood 5 : Ehsan Adil/Anwar Ali/any other from Domestic

    Please Do not waste of Paksitan Cricket Furutre :- Bring Back Razzaq, Akmal and at least give them some time to make group.................

  • Dummy4 on August 30, 2013, 6:37 GMT

    Of the new batsmen I have seen playing for Pakistan Amin, Sohaib Maqsood and Asad Shafiq look to have something. They should be stuck with, so they develop at the highest order. Ahmed Shezad could also be good, but he needs to work on his technique and temperament.

  • Dummy4 on August 30, 2013, 3:12 GMT

    Umar Amin is ove- hyped batsman. Just look at his first class average. There is hardly any batsman in the team for the future. And even our bowling is not upto mark now.

  • Avais on August 29, 2013, 23:30 GMT

    Unlike India, Pakistan's batting resources are limited and I'm glad Umar Amin , the leading batsman from the new crop of batsmen in Pakistan is gaining confidence. He is also a useful bowler who can easily bowl 4-5 tight overs after cementing his place in the ODI team. Much better bowler than Hammad Azam. He is on his way to regain his test birth which he lost after a not so successful debut in England 3 years ago.

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