Shan, Hafeez call out Pakistan’s timid batting approach in first innings

Pakistan captain Shan Masood and team director Mohammad Hafeez criticized Pakistan’s passive batting approach in the first innings, which ultimately led to a resounding 360-run victory for Australia in the opening Test at Perth.

The visitors, chasing a target of 450, crumbled for a mere 89 runs, with Nathan Lyon claiming 2-18 and Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood each securing three wickets.

Reflecting on the team’s performance, Shan Masood expressed disappointment, stating that although facing one of the best bowling attacks globally, Pakistan could have batted more aggressively.

“When you come here, you look for progress. If you told us at the start of the Test that Australia would play 110 overs and we would play 100 overs, I’d take that as a batting unit. Even though we were playing one of the best attacks in the world, we could have batted a bit quicker. We probably missed out on 60 or 70 runs which could have minimized the lead,” Masood said in post-match presentation.

Similarly, Hafeez revealed that certain tactical errors and a lack of application from the players contributed to the team’s inability to dominate crucial situations.

“We couldn’t execute our skills. We made the plans for the team but unfortunately, as a team, we couldn’t execute our plans. Obviously the guys wanted to, but they never applied themselves, to be honest. As a team, we made a couple of tactical errors. There were certain situations where we could have dominated. We were prepared but our execution wasn’t great,” Hafeez said in post- match press conference.

In the first innings, after dismissing Australia for 487, Pakistan’s openers, Abdullah Shafique and Imam-ul-Haq, approached the innings cautiously, adding 74 runs at a rate of two runs per over to negotiate the new ball. However, their slow start saw Pakistan bat for 53 overs on day two, concluding with a score of 132 for 2 at stumps. In contrast, Shan Masood stood out with his aggressive intent, scoring 30 runs off 43 balls in the first innings.