Shoaib Akhtar praises Fakhar Zaman for succeeding despite average batting technique

Akhtar opines that Pakistan's batting is going to suffer on seaming tracks because of poor technique.

Fakhar Zaman of Pakistan
Fakhar Zaman of Pakistan. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Following Fakhar Zaman’s breezy knock of 82 off 86 balls against New Zealand in the 1st ODI on Saturday, former Pakistan speedster Shoaib Akhtar heaped praise on the opener. The visitors eventually lost the opening ODI by 51 runs under D/L method in a rain-curtailed encounter to go 0-1 down in the three-match series, but Zaman’s batting was a big positive for the side for the series ahead.

Pakistan were chasing a tall target of 316 runs courtesy a stunning century by Kane Williamson and supporting acts by in-form Colin Munro and Henry Nicholls. However, apart from Zaman, Pakistan appeared clueless in front of the Kiwi bowlers as they were reduced to 54/5 as all other batsmen left the crease in quick succession finding it difficult to adjust to the seaming conditions.

Akhtar opines that Pakistan’s batting is going to suffer on seaming tracks because of poor technique. But he was impressed by Zaman, who according to him is an example of how one can do well even with an average technique if one bats intelligently.

“Pakistan batting is always going to suffer on seaming tracks because of poor technique of our batsman. But Zaman showed that even with average technique you can do wonders by managing and playing intelligently,” Akhtar tweeted.

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Tim Southee was the pick of the bowlers with his figures of 3/22 well supported by Trent Boult who scalped 2 wickets for 35. Hasan Ali’s 3/61 was a valiant effort for Pakistan at the start but a target of above 300 runs would always come down to being too much to chase in a rain obstructed match.

Moreover, Pakistan lost many wickets in a cluster early in the chase and this was after conceding the highest ever ODI score at Wellington. The DLS par score was 227, and Pakistan were a long way behind. With this loss, Pakistan’s 9-match winning streak came to an end.