Cricket

Abbas: Pakistan can be #1

2014-02-20 17:00
Pakistan (AFP)

Lahore - Former captain Zaheer Abbas said Thursday that Pakistan could be the world's best team if they improve their batting, a frequent weakness in the recent past.

Pakistan were bowled out for their lowest Test total of 49 by South Africa in Johannesburg during a 3-0 rout last year.

They were also bundled out for 99 in the Dubai Test against the same opposition in October and were below par in the Champions Trophy in England, where they lost all three matches.

Pakistan hired Australian Trent Woodhill for a brief three-week stint in June last year as batting coach and now have Zaheer Abbas as chief cricket consultant.

The 66-year-old Abbas is helping the faltering batsmen in a four-day camp to prepare for next week's Asia Cup in Bangladesh.

"I will do my best to help the batsmen overcome their problems and I am sure if our batting improves we can be the world's top team," he told reporters.

Pakistan have failed to find a suitable opening pair in all three formats, and their shaky middle order relies heavily on the ageing Younis Khan and captain Misbah-ul Haq.

"What I have noticed is that they want to learn, which is a good thing, and I will try to help them play according to the situation," said Abbas, the only Asian batsman to score a hundred centuries in first-class cricket.

Pakistan will wrap up the four-day training camp on Friday and fly out to Dhaka the next day, where they open their Asia Cup title defence with a match against Sri Lanka on Tuesday.

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