Waqar wants ‘others’ to put their hands up

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Waqar wants ‘others’ to put their hands up

Waqar believes that he has seen a change in the captain’s body language in the last few weeks.

By Sunil K. Vaidya

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Published: Mon 20 Oct 2014, 6:30 PM

Last updated: Fri 3 Apr 2015, 7:11 PM

Dubai: A young Pakistan (A) side provided some cheer for their compatriots with a thumping win over the Australians last week at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. But overall their cricketing fortunes have hit nadir and coach Waqar Younis wants ‘others’ in the team to put their hand up.

“It is not only about Misbah(Ul-Haq) and Yonuis (Khan), the others in the team will also have to take responsibilities,” the former fast bowler told newsmen as the team trained on the Dubai International Cricket Stadium groundon Monday.

He was responding to a question about poor run of scores by the Pakistan captain Misbah and Younis in recent matches. “Agree, in last few matches Misbah has not performed as much as we bank on him but don’t forget he has been the architect of many Pakistan victories in the recent past.”

Waqar believes that he has seen a change in the captain’s body language in the last few weeks. “I am confident that he will perform well in the Test matches against Pakistan,” he enthused.

While agreed that much would depend on Misbah and Younis Khan as far as Pakistan batting was concerned but stressed: “It is not only about Misbah and Younis, the others in the team also must perform and share responsibilities.” He wondered how long Pakistan would continue to depend on these two veterans.

When asked about the A team’s thumping win against Michael Clarke-led Australians, Waqar said that it was nice to see youngsters perform well and win. “The win has definitely given us a boost.”

He added that the practice match also exposed weaknesses in the Australian camp. “We have seen their weakness, which I won’t discuss with media, but we are working on exploiting the same,” the Pakistan coach pointed out.

“We are confident of doing well in Tests,” he announced but hastily added that he would not count the (A team) win as a big deal.

“Yes, the Australian captain (Clarke) got out cheaply in both innings and that is good news for us,” he said, adding at the same time that the Pakistan team would not like to underestimate Clarke. “He is too classy a player.”

“The Australians are a professional side but we are working on the weakness that we have seen in their camp,” he revealed without elaborating what shortcomings they had seen in the Darren Lehmann-coached team.

He predicted reverse swing. “We have seen in the past that the ball reverses on this slow grass-less pitch,” he informed.

He singled out Michael Johnson as the biggest Australian threat in the Test series. “I think the Australians will use him in short spells and try and get wickets but we will tackle him carefully.”

In his opinion Johnson was the biggest X factor in the Test battle between the two countries.

Waqar, who was member of the Pakistan team that beat Australia in a 1995 Test, reckons that Pakistan had a formidable attack with new-ball bowlers’ ability to reverse swing and spinners to exploit dry surface in a five-day game.

“For me, spin will be the order of the day,” he concluded in hope for the first Pakistan Test win over Australia since that 1995 win in Sydney.


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