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Younis Khan laments players being picked too early for international cricket



Younis Khan laments players being picked too early for international


The Pakistan batting coach said he wished the new players were given “at least two to three series” to establish themselves

Pakistan batting coach Younis Khan appealed for patience, warning people not to heap too much pressure on a young Pakistan squad ahead of the series against South Africa. He said a lot of people had over the years been picked in Test cricket for performances in other formats, but it was necessary to give this side time to adapt their game to the highest level.

Pakistan named nine uncapped players in a 20-man squad for a two-match Test series against South Africa following a disastrous New Zealand tour, dropping several Test regulars – Shan Masood, Mohammad Abbas, Imam ul Haq, Haris Sohail and Naseem Shah. A dramatic overhaul saw white-ball specialists Haris Rauf and Abdullah Shafique making into the side alongside with a slew of players from domestic circuit. These included Kamran Ghulam, Salman Agha and Saud Shakeel, prolific run-scorers on the domestic circuit, as well as Nauman Ali, Sajid Khan and Tabish Khan, similarly successful in the wicket-taking department.

Since January 2010, Pakistan have had handed Test debuts to 43 cricketers, but of those, only Azhar Ali (83), Asad Shafiq (77) and Sarfaraz Ahmed (48) have played more than 30 Test matches. Babar Azam, with 29 Tests, has showed enough promise to build a successful Test career, but several have faded away after a handful of games. While handing chances to new players hasn’t been an issue, Pakistan have continued to struggle to enable them to last the course once they are promoted to the Test side.

“Ideally, a player should have lots of cricket behind them before being selected for the top national team,” Younis said. “When we talk about other players from successful teams, they come with an excess of 100 first-class matches, and we are missing out on this. We have so many players inducted into the team after playing T20I matches and ODIs so, in terms of Test cricket, it takes time to understand your role and transform your game accordingly from one format to another.

“There is definitely a lack of cricket behind them when they are picked for the national side. We [Younis, Inzamam etc] used to play a lot of cricket from the top to grade 2 level and had more tough conditions overall. But these days it’s different, with a lot of players picked after one-off performances. But when they are selected too early, they are found out on the international stage, with a lot of weaknesses highlighted that are not apparent on the domestic level.”

Pakistan have struggled to find their feet in Test cricket since rising to the top of the rankings in 2016. For much of the past four years, they have dropped back down to the lower half of the table, and currently sit in sixth place in the ICC Test rankings.

Since 2016, when the first edition of the PSL took place, a number of players who rose to prominence in the T20 league have made it into the Test side, but Younis insisted he did not want to see the importance of the domestic first-class system erode. That was evident in the number of players plucked from first-class cricket for Pakistan’s series against South Africa, and Younis wanted to see these players get an extended run, confident they would make the grade.

“International cricket is all about yourself, how you go about your skills, hone them, and evolve as a player,” Younis said when asked why so many Pakistan players couldn’t stay the course at the international arena. “I won’t say its technique and tactics but it’s more about focus. When I started, I used to play with different styles and techniques and in a few years’ time, I realised I had to stick with what was best for me to survive. So I’m there to help the players but not overwhelm them with too much input. They tend to make mistakes and there will be failures and that is how they will learn. They need to be given the freedom and we have to understand that young players need time and should be given time.

“Coaches can identify the problem and tell the players the solution, but then at the end of the day, it all comes down to the players. They themselves have to take initiatives and work hard towards their goals.

“I wish that the young lot of players we have selected for the South Africa series should be given at least two to three series. Because when you chop and change, it’s really tough not only for the players but for coaches. It happened in the past and I wish this doesn’t happen again and I get to work with the boys to make a difference. We don’t have to look for their performances right now and we have to show belief and trust in them.”

Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo’s Pakistan correspondent

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EngVsPak- England defeated Pakistan by three wickets

Pakistan has struggled with their batting, putting up scores of 141 and 195 as they were outplayed in the first two ODIs.





James Vince scored a hundred and Lewis Gregory contributed 77 as England defeated Pakistan by three wickets to complete a clean sweep of the three-match ODI series.

Vince raced to 102 off 95 deliveries and Gregory struck his 77 of 69 balls as hosts England, chasing Pakistan’s challenging score of 331 for seven wickets, reached 332 for seven with two overs to spare.

Opener Phil Salt scored 37 while skipper Ben Stokes added 32 as England held their nerves to register a comfortable win in third and final ODI.

Earlier, skipper Babar Azam struck a career-best 158 (139-ball) and helped Pakistan’s batting finally came good in this series.

Opener Imam-ul-Haq scored 56 and Mohammad Rizwan 74 as Pakistan posted 331 for nine wickets in their allotted 50 overs.

Playing against a makeshift England squad, after the originally selected player went into isolation after three players tested positive for COVID-19, Pakistan has struggled with their batting, putting up scores of 141 and 195 as they were outplayed in the first two ODIs.

Babar came in after Fakhar Zaman was out early for 6, caught by Zak Crawley off Saqib Mahmood. He raised 92 runs for the third wicket with opener Imam-ul-Haq and then put together a partnership of 179 with Rizwan.
However, they suffered a collapse soon after Rizwan was out, caught by wicketkeeper Simpson off seamer Brydon Carse, with the score 292/3. Only one of the remaining seven batsman managed to reach double digits.

But Babar kept blasting runs from the other end and was the eighth batsman out with the score 328 in the 50th over.

He struck 14 boundaries and four sixes during his innings.
Carse was the best England bowler on display as he claimed five wickets for 61 in his 10 overs.

Brief scores: Pakistan 331/9 in 50 overs (Imam-ul-Haq 56, Babar Azam 158, M Rizwan 74; Brydon Carse 5/61).

England 332/7 in 48 overs (Phil Salt 37, James Vince 102, Ben Stokes 32, Lewis Gregory 77; Haris Rauf 4/65).

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Corona hit – India-Lanka ODI matches were postponed for four days




Corona hit - India-Lanka ODI matches were postponed for four days

India’s tour of Sri Lanka has hit a roadblock after two Covid-19 positive cases in the home team’s camp delayed the start of the ODI series by at least four days, and canceled due to more cases. The possibility has been left open. Sri Lankan batting coach Grant Flower and the team’s performance analyst Shirantha Niroshna have both tested positive and the entire team that arrived from England this week has been put in isolation.

Though both the boards have not made any official statement yet, it seems that all the six matches will be played within a period of 10-11 days if there is no scope for any more positive cases. There are also concerns that the series could be called off if more positive cases emerge in the Sri Lankan camp. This means that the Indian team, which has already spent 12 days in Sri Lanka, will have to return home without playing a single match.

The tentative dates for the ODIs have been set as July 17, 19 and 21. The report states that the T20 Internationals will be played on July 24, 25 and 27. However, neither Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) nor the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has given any confirmation regarding the dates.

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Indonesia lacks oxygen, seeks help as virus cases rise




Indonesia lacks oxygen, seeks help as virus cases rise

Just two months ago, Indonesia came forward to India’s aid with thousands of tanks of oxygen. Today, the Southeast Asian country is running out of oxygen as it grapples with a devastating wave of coronavirus cases and the government is seeking emergency supplies from other countries, including Singapore and China.

Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, the government minister in charge of Indonesia’s pandemic response, said a shipment of more than 1,000 oxygen cylinders, concentrators, ventilators and other health equipment arrived from Singapore on Friday, followed by another 1,000 ventilators from Australia.

In addition, Pandjaitan said, Indonesia plans to purchase 36,000 tons of oxygen and 10,000 concentrators — equipment that generates oxygen — from neighboring Singapore. He said he was in contact with China and other possible oxygen sources. The US and the United Arab Emirates have also offered help.

Overall, Indonesia, the world’s fourth most populous country, has reported more than 2.4 million infections and 63,760 deaths from COVID-19. Those figures are widely believed to be a huge undercount due to low testing and poor tracing measures. On Thursday, Indonesia reported nearly 39,000 confirmed cases, its biggest single-day jump.

Indonesia’s hospitals have been flooded, with increasing numbers of sick people in isolation at home or waiting to receive emergency care. In Indonesia’s most populous island, Java, hospitals began setting up temporary intensive care units in mid-June. Many patients are waiting for several days to get admitted. Oxygen tanks rolled on the sidewalks for the lucky few, while others were told they’d have to find their own.

The city’s deputy mayor Yaya Mulyana said emergency rooms at a public hospital in Bandung city were closed earlier this week amid panic buying over rising infections in the West Java provincial capital.

“The panicked people bought oxygen tanks, though they didn’t need them yet,” said Muliana. “This has exhausted the supply of oxygen.”

At a hospital in Yogyakarta in central Java, 63 COVID-19 patients died in one day – 33 of them during its central liquid oxygen supply, although the hospital switched to using oxygen cylinders was, spokesman Banu Harmawan said.

When a brutal outbreak ravaged the country, Indonesia donated 3,400 oxygen cylinders and concentrators to India. As its own cases rose, Jakarta scrapped plans to send another 2,000 oxygen concentrators to India in late June. The daily requirement of oxygen has reached 1,928 tonnes per day. According to government data, the total available production capacity of the country is 2,262 tonnes per day.

“I asked for 100% oxygen first for medical purposes, which means all industrial allocation should be shifted to medical,” said Panjaitan, a minister in the government. “We are racing against time, we have to act fast.”

Noting the rapid spread of the highly contagious delta variant, he warned that Indonesia could face a worst-case scenario with 50,000 cases a day. The next two weeks will be crucial, he said.

The industry ministry responded by issuing a decree that all oxygen supplies be sent to hospitals packed with coronavirus patients and asked industry players to cooperate.

Oxygen is used to make many products including textiles, plastics and vehicles. Oil refineries, chemical makers and steel makers also use it. But industry leaders are clamoring to support government efforts to maximize supplies for hospitals.

The government has redirected oxygen supplies from industrial plants at Morowali in Central Sulawesi, Balikpapan on the island of Borneo, and Belawan and Batam on the island of Sumatra, Pandjaitan said. Small oxygen industries have also been directed to produce pharmaceutical oxygen.

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