Cricket World Cup

Where did the spinners go from Pakistan cricket?

Where did the spinners go from Pakistan cricket? On the tour of Australia, the Pakistan cricket team played a side match in the capital Canberra before the first test match. In this match, the bowlers could not get anything except head-banging.

On a slow and smooth pitch, the bowlers had little to do except watch the batsman’s form. At first, the Pakistan batsmen made the PM XI bowlers sweat and then when the hosts got their chance, they did the same. Pakistan has fielded most of the players who have been selected for the Perth Test in this match, there is only a competition for who will be taken, but captain Shan Masood’s first choice for the spinner is Abrar Ahmed.

The moment of concern for the Pakistan team arose when Abrar Ahmed went out on the third day of the match due to a right foot problem. The pain was so severe that he was taken to the hospital for an MRI scan.

The Pakistan team has two spinners on this tour, one is Nauman Ali and the other is Abrar Ahmed. Noman Ali is the only bowler who can be fed into the team due to Abrar Ahmed’s in-fitness. If you look at Nouman Ali’s bowling, he is an orthodox left-arm spinner who bowls with the help of pits on the pitch. His bowling does not have as much break and spin as a leg-spinner or an off-spinner. He can’t be effective on Australian pitches because the pitches are neither pitted nor smooth, so Nouman Ali can’t get much help.

Abrar Ahmed spins with the help of the fingers, he also plays a carrom board ball in which the ball dives quickly in the air and deceives the batsman with its length. But Abrar Ahmed is inexperienced, he doesn’t have control over his googly, and he can get beaten on Australian pitches because of his poor length.

Does Pakistan have these two spinners?

The question is whether these two spinners could have been taken on the tour of Australia. So the answer is very simple both the spinners have been playing consistently for the past year. Abrar bowled brilliantly against England while Nauman bowled brilliantly in Sri Lanka so how can both be ignored? However, both these spinners have mostly disappointed. Defeats against England in all three Tests and a draw against New Zealand are enough to put a finger on the qualification of both.

The New Zealand team does not play spinners very well and recently failed miserably against the Bangladeshi spinners, but the Pakistani spinners could not contain them in both Tests. If these two spinners fail on Pakistani pitches, how will they perform on Australian pitches?

Are these the only two spinners Pakistan has
Are these the only two spinners Pakistan has

 

Abrar Ahmed could not impress at all against the Prime Minister’s XI in Australia when there were low-quality batsmen in front, but he will be the main spinner in the Test matches and his unfitness is a big blow for Pakistan.

Where did the good spinners go?

It is not that Pakistan cricket has completely lost spinners. Many spinners are bowling in different teams and some have even played international cricket. Sajid Khan took ten wickets against Bangladesh while Usama Mir, Mohammad Nawaz, and Usman Qadir were included in the World Cup squad. Shadab Khan has been a part of the Pakistan team for a long time. If seen in domestic cricket, Kashif Bhatti has taken the most wickets in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy, Zahid Mahmood has also represented the national team, Arif Yaqub, Qasim Akram, Mehran Mumtaz, Mubashir Ahmed, Ibtisam Sheikh and many others. There are spinners who are playing.

So, among all these spinners, there is no one who can play the role for the national team which was played by Iqbal Qasim, Abdul Qadir, and Saqlain Mushtaq in the past.

Former Test spinner Iqbal Qasim says that the role of spinners has never been recognized honestly in Pakistan cricket. Although more than half of Pakistan’s victories have been due to spinners, the carelessness of the board officials and the brilliance of T20 cricket has dimmed the role of spinners, the rest has been fulfilled by tape ball cricket, in which spinners are considered useless. PCB has never tried to train spinners despite having an academy.

Even after Saqlain Mushtaq became the head coach, Pakistan remained empty-handed in the matter of spinners. He could not transfer his skills to the new generation and there was no difference in the performance of the existing spinners. Before the World Cup, Osama Mir was said to be successful on the Indian pitches, but Osama Mir was very disappointed. He was also expensive and ineffective compared to other teams’ spinners.

Despite Saqlain Mushtaq becoming the head coach, Pakistan remained empty-handed in terms of spinners
Despite Saqlain Mushtaq becoming the head coach, Pakistan remained empty-handed in terms of spinners – Photo: PCB

 

How to improve the situation?

Can’t Pakistan make Abdul Qadir and Iqbal Qasim again? Iqbal Qasim, the highest wicket-taker in Pakistan with 900 wickets, says that spinners are made, not born. But the system allows them to be. He gives his example that he achieved this position with patience and hard work. He says he used to bowl five to six hours a day and improve his length. Today’s young spinners lack patience and hard work, they want to become famous and rich overnight.

If PCB hires Iqbal Qasim to look for spinners and work with other spinners of the past on their line length and variety, there is no reason why spinners cannot be made. India also had the same problems in the last decade but now through their system, they have got famous spinners like Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal. Anil Kumble played an important role in it.

Pakistan can also take help from Sri Lankan spinners to improve the spinners where there is a batch of great spinners from the past.

Famous Pakistani spinners of the past (right to left) Parvez Sajjad, Iqbal Qasim, Naseem Al Ghani
Famous Pakistani spinners of the past (right to left) Parvez Sajjad, Iqbal Qasim, Naseem Al Ghani

 

Difficulties in touring Australia

Pakistan’s first match is in Perth where the spinner’s role is likely to be general but in Sydney and Milburn, Pakistan will desperately need a good spinner.

Pakistan won the last Test match in Sydney thanks to the bowling of Mushtaq Ahmed. But now there is no spinner like Mushtaq Ahmed.

Pakistan team has now called up Sajid Khan but he has not been able to show any special performance in domestic cricket.

Pakistan, which was called the nursery of spinners and was famous for producing quality spinners in the past, has now reached a point where spinners are calling. From the PSL teams to the national team, there is no spinner who can be called victorious. Loud and noisy music takes away your peace of mind and loud and noisy cricket takes away your tradition and your pride.

If this is the case with the lack of skill of spinners, it is possible that in the next decade, Pakistan cricket will be able to find spinners only in the pages of history.

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