Not easy for them to bat at No. 5 or 6, Mahmood on three Pakistan players who are natural big-hitters

Azhar Mahmood said it is not easy for Sohaib Maqsood, Khushdil Shah and Asif Ali to bat at No. 5 or 6

Azhar Mahmood on Sohaib Maqsood, Khushdil Shah and Asif Ali: “We need to understand the role such players play when they are asked to bat at the number 5 or 6 positions where it’s not easy to bat”

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Former Pakistan bowling coach Azhar Mahmood said it is not easy for players like Sohaib Maqsood, Khushdil Shah and Asif Ali to bat at number five or six.

Maqsood, Khushdil and Asif all played in the Pakistan Super League (PSL) recently and had strong campaigns.

Maqsood scored 428 runs in 12 games for the Multan Sultans, which included five half-centuries, at an average of 47.55 and a strike-rate of 156.77.

Thanks to his efforts, the Sultans won their first-ever PSL title.

Maqsood, who last played international cricket in January 2016, was recalled to the Pakistan ODI and T20 squads at the expense of Haider Ali.

Haider was withdrawn from the national team after he and fellow Peshawar Zalmi player Umaid Asif breached the Pakistan Super League’s (PSL) Health and Safety Protocols by meeting with people outside the bio-secure bubble.

Khushdil was also part of the Sultans and made 165 runs in 11 matches, which included a top score of 44 not out, at an average of 41.25 and a strike-rate of 137.50.

As for Asif, who played for Islamabad United, he accumulated 224 runs in 12 games, which included a top score of 75, at an average of 28 and a strike-rate of 167.16.

“We need to understand the role such players play when they are asked to bat at the number 5 or 6 positions where it’s not easy to bat,” Mahmood, who is the Sultans’ bowling coach, wrote in his blog for PakPassion.

“This is where good management comes into play as they are able to get the best out of such talented players at the right times.”

Pakistan will play three ODIs and three T20 Internationals against England. The ODI series will begin on July 8 and conclude on July 13, while the T20 series will be held from July 16 to 20.

The tour of the West Indies will consist of five T20 Internationals and two Tests, with the T20 series getting underway on July 27 and ending on August 3.

As for the Test series, it will start on August 12 and conclude on August 24.

Pakistan Test Squad: Babar Azam (captain), Mohammad Rizwan (wicketkeeper) (vice-captain), Abdullah Shafique, Abid Ali, Azhar Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Fawad Alam, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Imran Butt, Mohammad Abbas, Mohammad Nawaz, Naseem Shah, Nauman Ali, Sajid Khan, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Saud Shakeel, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shahnawaz Dhani, Yasir Shah (subject to fitness) and Zahid Mahmood

Pakistan ODI Squad: Babar Azam (captain), Shadab Khan (vice-captain), Abdullah Shafique, Faheem Ashraf, Fakhar Zaman, Sohaib Maqsood, Haris Rauf, Haris Sohail, Hasan Ali, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan (wicketkeeper), Agha Salman, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Saud Shakeel, Shaheen Shah Afridi and Usman Qadir

Pakistan T20 Squad: Babar Azam (captain), Shadab Khan (vice-captain), Arshad Iqbal, Azam Khan, Faheem Ashraf, Fakhar Zaman, Sohaib Maqsood, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Hafeez, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan (wicketkeeper), Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Sharjeel Khan and Usman Qadir

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