Entire combination has been disturbed due to Saim Ayub: Ramiz Raja

"You need to revert to the opening pair of Mohammad Rizwan and Babar Azam," said Ramiz.

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Ramiz Raja and Pakistan
Ramiz Raja and Pakistan (Photo Source: Twitter)

Pakistan took on England in the second T20I at Edgbaston in Birmingham on May 25. The first T20I at Headingley was washed out due to rain. England emerged victorious in the second clash of the four-match series ahead of the impending T20 World Cup. Pakistan’s new head coach, Gary Kirsten has tried Saim Ayub as an opener downgrading Babar Azam’s position as an opener to the number three spot. 

But the move has backfired as Ayub remains a novice to that crucial job at hand in international cricket. Mohammad Rizwan and Babar were the primary opening pairs for Pakistan in T20Is and the duo were effective throughout. After the loss, former Pakistan PCB Chairman, Ramiz Raja entitled Ayub to have disrupted the entire combination of the Pakistan team.  

"Win or lose is part of the game but Pakistan could've competed better and may have even won at the end but they made mistakes. First, let's identify the problem areas for Pakistan. First, Saim Ayub coming as an opener. I don't think Pakistan should continue with Saim. He has been given too many chances and you have to do better in [international] cricket,” Ramiz said on his YouTube channel.

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“He is undercooked. You need to revert to the opening pair of Mohammad Rizwan and Babar Azam because that is Pakistan's strength and they understand each other's game. The entire combination has been disturbed due to Saim," he added. 

Pakistan grappling with new opening pair combination

Talking about the game, Pakistan won the toss and opted to bowl. The move paid dividends as they plucked wickets at regular intervals. But England captain, Jos Buttler played a sensible knock of 84 runs and the hosts posted a respectable 183 runs on the board. Shaheen Afridi dazzled with three wickets in four overs conceding 36 runs.

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On the other hand, Pakistan’s openers, Ayub and Rizwan departed after scoring zero and two runs respectively. Babar and Fakhar Zaman amassed 32 and 45 respectively as no other batter stayed till the end. The visitors fell short by 23 runs as Reece Topley claimed three wickets for England. 

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