Afridi, Nazir must review batting approach: Azhar

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Updated: Tuesday, September 25, 2012, 11:27 [IST]
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Batting woes for Pakistan: Mahmood

Karachi, Sep 25: Pakistan all-rounder Azhar Mahmood, who excelled in India's doemstic twenty20 league, Indian Premier League, has urged Shahid Afridi, Umar Akmal and Imran Nazir to review their batting approach following their struggle to score runs in World T20.

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Azhar Mahmood, who played for Pakistan in 143 ODI, 21 Tests from 1997-2007, felt Pakistan can aim for the title this time around as they have a balanced team, but the concern has been batting, as a few cricketers need to review their batting approach.

"Their injudicious shot selection remains a matter of concern," he said.

Azhar also added that Pakistan opener Imran Nazir is highly talented and has to check his batting approach as he can do wonders for the team if he settles down first before going for big shots.

"What Imran needs to do is to stay at the crease with a calm mind and use his talent. Instead if he doesn't use his head then he will get those 10 or 12 run scores which are not good for the team," Mahmood said.

Moreover, Shahid Afridi who has been the most experienced player also looked off-colour mainly as a batsman, as Azhar also feels it's time for Afridi to concentrate on his batting approach in order to put up a good show in the on-going World T20.

"Shahid Afridi is another such case and that really is nothing new. Everybody knows that Afridi has not been performing well as a batsman recently. However, he needs to apply the same advice that I have for Imran Nazir. The other day, he blocked the first ball and then tried to hit a six the very next ball which did not work," he said.

"Afridi needs to give himself a chance by playing for a longer time. We all know how dangerous a player he is but he needs to allow himself more time at the crease. People usually think that in T20 cricket, you have 120 balls to play and you have to do something spectacular from ball one but the reality is different. 120 deliveries is a lot of time and Afridi needs to play a few balls, take some singles and doubles, get used to the conditions and the bowling and then target the bowlers."

While Azhar Mahmood criticised the batting approach of Shahid Afridi and Imran Nazir, he also mentioned Umar Akmal, who had not been in great form and is not performing to his potential.

"I think a lot of Pakistani players are not doing this and both Nazir and Afridi are guilty of this problem, as is Umar Akmal. Umar also seems to be making the same mistakes. The aforementioned cricketers are so talented but they just don't seem to be using their minds and their experience," he said.

Having advised them to review their batting approach, Azhar Mahmood has analysed Pakistan's batting line-up as he has also offered them suggestions on how to improve their batting, which poses a threat to Pakistan as they are looking forward to win the World T20 title for the second time.


Story first published:  Tuesday, September 25, 2012, 11:25 [IST]
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