Mohammad Amir evades question on captain Sarfraz’s view about slow-bowling pacers
Sarfraz criticized the team's bowling effort and was not pleased with the pace they produced.
Updated - Jan 12, 2019 12:51 pm
Just when India were relishing a much-awaited victory in a Test series in Australia, their arch-rivals Pakistan were struggling against South Africa in the longer format. The Asian side lost the first two Tests against the Proteas to squander the three-match series and the repercussions were already being felt in the camp. If the captain, Sarfraz Ahmed, had a bitter encounter with coach Mickey Arthur after the visitors’ batters let them down in the first match at Centurion, it was the turn for the former to take on the bowlers after the defeat in the second Test in Cape Town.
Sarfraz blamed his bowlers after the loss in the second Test saying it was not up to the mark and he was particularly critical of the fast bowlers for delivering at an average pace of 130 kilometres per hour. The Proteas bowlers bowled at 145 kilometres per hour and he said in the post-match conference that Pakistan had bowled far better in the first Test.
Pakistan bowlers didn’t appreciate captain’s remarks
While the visitors were trounced by 6 wickets in Centurion, they lost by 9 wickets in the second after conceding a first innings lead of 254 runs. Left-arm pacer Mohammad Amir who made a comeback to the national side after some months after a poor run in the ODIs picked two four-fors in the first two Tests and chipped in with two in the first innings of the third Test in Johannesburg.
Another young pacer Shaheen Afridi, who is just playing his second series, also took two four-fers in the first two games and has picked nine wickets in all in those matches. Ahmed’s remarks reportedly did not go down well with the bowlers and they felt they were discouraging.
That the mood in the Pakistan camp is still far from okay was revealed when Amir himself was asked by a reporter about Sarfraz’s observations after the second Test match that the bowlers were bowling below par pace. The 26-year-old pacer immediately evaded the query saying “Leave this question, leave this question, thank you,” PakPassion editor Saj Sadiq tweeted.
Pakistan did well to bowl out South Africa for 262 in the third Test which started Friday but their batting woes continued to plague them as they ended the day at 17 for 2 with Vernon Philander taking two wickets for one run in four overs.