Don’t need Iftikhar, Haris in middle-order: Imam

Imam ul Haq, the Pakistan opener, believes that time is running out for the team to test different lineups before the 2023 World Cup. Consequently, he opposes the inclusion of hard-hitters such as Iftikhar Ahmed and Mohammad Haris in the lower-middle order.

In the post-match presentation in Karachi, Imam ul Haq was asked about the necessity of including Iftikhar Ahmed and Mohammad Haris in the middle-order to enhance power-hitting in the remaining matches against New Zealand.

Imam ul Haq expressed his honest opinion, stating that he doesn’t believe there is enough time for experiments. He mentioned that the team already possesses sufficient power-hitting abilities with players like Agha Salman, Shadab Khan, and Mohammad Nawaz. Imam emphasized the importance of confidence and highlighted the challenge of performing effectively when coming in at number five or six with limited overs to play.

Imam ul Haq praised Agha Salman’s performance, highlighting his contributions with the bat and ball. He also emphasized the skills of Nawaz and Shadab as excellent hitters and all-rounders. While acknowledging that Haris and Iftikhar could have been given a chance with more matches, Imam acknowledged that it’s his personal opinion and Babar, the captain, may have a different perspective. With only two matches remaining, Imam emphasized the importance of instilling full confidence in the players before heading into a major event.

Imam ul Haq and Babar Azam formed a remarkable partnership, scoring a century together, as Pakistan secured a 26-run victory over New Zealand. With this win, Pakistan now holds an insurmountable 3-0 lead in the five-match series. The team’s impressive performance keeps them on track to potentially claim the top spot in the ICC ODI Team Rankings for the first time.

Having secured the series win, their first against New Zealand in over a decade, Pakistan aims to triumph in the remaining two matches on Friday and Sunday. By doing so, they have the opportunity to elevate their ranking from fifth to first in the ICC ODI Team Rankings. Achieving the number-one spot would be a significant milestone for Pakistan, surpassing their previous highest ranking of number three achieved in January 2007.

This is published in logicalbaat, on 04 May, 2023.

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