Waqar praises Pak batsmen over win

Published: Saturday, November 6, 2010, 11:29 [IST]
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Waqar praises Pak batsmen over win

Dubai, Nov 6: Pakistan cricket coach Waqar Younis is all praise for his batsmen, who chased down a challenging 275-run target by South Africa to square the series 2-2, and set up a tantalising series decider on Monday.

Younis' men recorded their second win in the five-match series with a narrow one-wicket victory, as Zulqarnain Haider clipped the winning runs off the penultimate delivery, The News reported.

Appreciating the batsmen's performances, Younis said, "best thing about the batting was we did not allow them to get on the top of us. We just made sure that we kept the momentum going and made sure the run rate would not climb on us. This is probably the major reason why we got home."

"This is a great boost for the team. Since that performance of Razzaq in the second ODI, we have been really doing well. We missed out closely in the previous match but we did well here and it's a great moment for the boys," he added.

Younis Khan provided a vital innings as he struck 73 from 115 balls to edge Pakistan towards South Africa's total of 274.

The coach praised Younis, saying, "He is a great player. He has the experience with him. More than playing a great knock he said that staying at the crease at that stage was important. That is what helped Pakistan build the innings."

Pakistan tail-end batsmen Haider and Wahab Riaz held their nerves after Razzaq's dismissal to pull off a sensational one wicket win for their team.

"Even Haider was good today. He might not be a batsman who can hit the ball hard but he can stick around there and play when it matters," he added.

Younis admitted that the fielding is still a cause of concern ahead of the final ODI, but added that it is showing continual signs of improvement. Earlier, Graeme Smith played a captain's knock of 92 to steer South Africa to a challenging 274-6, but once again his team choked in the final moments despite having grabbed all top wickets. The win helped Pakistan level the series 2-2 and set up an intriguing fifth and final match here on Monday.


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