Pakistan look to bounce back

2013-02-13 16:35

Pakistan coach Dav Whatmore said he expected his team to bounce back from their 211-run first test defeat to the Proteas inside four days.

It would be difficult for any team to bounce back from the first innings mauling Pakistan suffered but Whatmore said there were lessons taken from the second day during which they were skittled for 49 in less than a session.

“There are reasons for everything that happened. You can’t win a test match in a session of play but you can go a long way towards losing one in a session and that is what happened on the second morning. We’re keen to bounce back,” Whatmore said.

“It’s never nice to lose a game, especially when this team has been together. In this format of the game the players representing Pakistan have been more consistent than in any other format.”

Whatmore was coy to reveal whether beanpole-fast bowler Irfan would make his test debut on Thursday but said he was impressed with his showing in the practice match against the Emerging Cape Cobras at the Wally Wilson Oval.

Irfan had match figures of 7/40 in a 10-wicket win and Whatmore hinted at one or two changes for the game, but said that was dependent on the wicket.

Openers Nasir Jamshed and Mohammad Hafeez missed the tour game owing to injury and sickness.

“He’s pushing. He had a good practice match for us along with Tanvir Ahmed, who also impressed. Irfan has done as much as he could do to get a game and if he does he would have earned it, Whatmore said

“A fit Irfan bowling well would always be a threat to the opposition. It will be his first game if he plays so it will be a big occasion for him and he’ll need to absorb the pressure against some good batsmen. It’s nice to have him on your side though.”

There was a flutter of resistance in Pakistan’s second innings in the first test.

Whitmore said the more a team spends time in conditions the more they get accustomed to them. He said, though, it was up to the batsmen’s judgement to make the lessons of the first test count.

“Shot selection is the main thing with any batsman, being able to assess length and direction and make a decision. With 90-100 correct decisions you are going to make a lot of runs but once you start making incorrect decisions then you have a bit of a problem,” Whatmore said.

“Given the change in conditions we are facing here as compared to Pakistan, it is a challenge and we are getting used to it. The longer we play in these conditions the better you will get. We’ve tried to practice the things we need to do.”

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