Legendary Pakistan cricketer Wasim Akram blamed Pakistan players’ excessive focus on T20 cricket for the national team’s recent below-par performance against New Zealand and England.
While many criticized the pitches in Pakistan during the home matches, the likes of James Anderson, Ollie Robinson, and Tim Southee troubled the batters on the same pitches, whereas the likes of Naseem Shah, Haris Rauf, and others struggled to get wickets.
Reacting to the Pakistan cricket team’s recent poor performance at home, the legendary pacer believes that Shah, Haris Rauf, and Mohammad Wasim Jr. must return to first-class cricket to improve their performance in Test cricket.
He also suggested that the Pakistan bowlers should utilize their time in playing long format matches instead of playing in T20 leagues across the world, saying if the fast bowlers start to think that bowling only four overs can fetch them money, their performance will obviously get affected in the other formats.
Wasim Akram was quoted as saying by Cricket Pakistan: “If you get more money for playing only four overs, then this will be an easy decision. Naseem Shah, Haris Rauf, and Wasim Jr. should play first-class cricket. Apart from PSL, they must play 1-2 leagues in a year, but also in long format matches. Pay attention; if we had time, we would have played 4-day matches.”
Speaking about Pakistan’s recent performance, the former Pakistan captain also believes that 'the fear of losing' is hurting the national team.
He added, “The reason for this is the fear of losing. We have to lose and win, but we should not be afraid. I do not say that (prepare) Green Top pitches but must have a little bounce, batting for two days, should turn on the third and fourth day.”
Akram also suggested the PCB avoid hiring foreign coaches for the team.
He signed off by saying, “If you had asked me, I would have told you that foreign coaches will not come; everyone is afraid that the contract will also end if the board changes. If you are not getting a foreign coach, get the services of a Pakistan, the reason for the decline in the performance graph of fast bowlers in T20 cricket.”