Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Former Pakistan captain Ramiz Raja noted that the national team must dismiss Australia opener David Warner and in-form batsman Steve Smith early on in the upcoming Test series.
Smith has been in magnificent form as of late as he starred in Australia’s Ashes series against England, where he was the top scorer with 774 runs in four matches, which included three centuries and three fifties, at an average of 110.57.
He followed that up with 66 runs in the three-match Twenty20 series against Sri Lanka, which included a half-century, at an average of 66 and a strike-rate of 146.66.
In the three-match Twenty20 series against Pakistan, he scored an unbeaten 80 in the one innings he played.
Warner, meanwhile, had a disastrous Ashes campaign as he could only muster 95 runs in five matches, which included a lone fifty, at a dismal average of 9.50.
However, he regained his form in the recent three-match Twenty20 series against Sri Lanka, where he went unbeaten in all three games and ended up amassing 217 runs, which included a hundred and two half-centuries.
He continued to excel in the three-match Twenty20 series against Pakistan, where he accumulated 70 runs in three games at an average of 70.
“Pakistan can create pressure on Australia if they remove Smith and David Warner early,” Ramiz said in a YouTube video as quoted by cricketpakistan.com.pk.
Ramiz added that Pakistan must play with an aggressive mindset, including spinner Yasir Shah, who struggled during Pakistan’s last tour of Australia in December 2016 to January 2017 as he only took eight wickets in three Tests at a dismal average of 84.
“Pakistan will need to be aggressive in their approach. Once Australia gets on top, they don’t let you back in the game, so it is important to not let them dominate,” he said. “Yasir Shah needs to bowl with an attacking mindset as he can play a key role in giving Pakistan an advantage.
“If you [want] to do well in Australia, you need to make adjustments. Batsmen have to adjust to the high bounce and score big in the first innings. Similarly bowlers will have to bowl at consistent lines and maintain their intensity.”