‘Pakistan making same mistake since Partition’: Shoaib Akhtar lashes out after Manchester defeat

Former Pakistan speedster Shoaib Akhtar criticised the Pakistan Test team for their loss against England in the first Manchester Test on Sunday. Blaming the batsmen for their lacklustre approach, especially in the second innings, Akhtar said that the reckless shots and lack of partnerships were the reasons for Pakistan’s defeat.

a man in a baseball game: Shoaib Akhtar slammed Pakistan’s performance in the first Test. (File/AP)

“Pakistan had a chance to put a big target but made the same mistake (that they have been making) since Partition. The batting let us down. We had a lead of more than 100 runs and batsmen should have capitalised on it. But the batsmen failed to stitch partnerships,” he said.

“Shan Masood was unlucky but he had already played his part. Asad Shafiq got run out, it is again his fault. But Babar Azam has to come out with something good because you cannot create a name like this. You might be a good player, but you have to establish yourself as a match-winner,” said Shoaib.

“If lead had not been there, then we were dismissed for just 150-175. You have to think what you have to do as a batsman, this is really disappointing,” he concluded.

Coming to the bowling, Akhtar was critical of how young Naseem Shah was more focussed on bowling length.

“When Chris Woakes came out to bat why didn’t he pitch it short and hit on his head, make him feel uncomfortable so that chances would come. This is lack of aggression,” he said.

Earlier on Saturday, as the Pakistani bowlers failed to breakthrough the partnerships, England finished on 277/7 for its 10th highest successful Test run chase. Jos Buttler and Chris Woakes led a remarkable comeback for England in a three-wicket victory. Buttler was out for 75 while Woakes hit the winning runs and was undefeated on 84. Leg-spinner Yasir Shah (4/99) was the most successful bowler for the visitors.

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