Let’s be fair, not many of us would have expected a second-string England to roll over a full-strength Pakistan in a way they did. They outplayed the visitors in every department and cruised to wins in all three ODI. The whitewash will go down as one of the most humiliating series losses for Pakistan.
Meanwhile, Pakistan’s below-par performances have left the fans and experts fuming. Former Pakistan cricketer Ramiz Raja lashed out at Babar Azam-led side, saying they succumbed to pressure of winning against a B team and made numerous mistakes that accounted for them in the series.
Pakistan were annihilated in the first two ODIs but put up an improved show with the bat in the final game. Babar Azam’s ravishing 158 and Mohammad Rizwan’s blistering half-century propelled the ‘Men in Green’ to a mammoth 331. However, all their efforts were overshadowed by James Vince’s maiden hundred, who scored 102 off 95 balls to take England home.
“An extremely painful and tough day for Pakistan cricket and its fans. The team has been whitewashed by a B-Grade England team. I’m not surprised by the results because it was on the cards. This team got mentally disintegrated. They couldn’t get over the shock of their defeat in the first ODI because the headlines were all over that a B team, which was assembled within two days, has beaten Pakistan.
“They went under pressure after the loss and hence, committed mistakes. It has become a trend for this Pakistan team. It doesn’t learn from mistakes. Instead, they double it under pressure,” Raja said.
Raja further highlighted the need for a change in Pakistan’s cricket environment. He stressed that Babar Azam should take responsibility and build a team for the future.
“Babar Azam is a young captain and he would need to change the environment. He needs to understand that he won’t get headlines for scoring 150. It will only happen if the team plays connectively and wins. Unless you take chances, get your skills challenged – how would you become a successful side?
“You saw the Zimbabwe series. It was an ideal opportunity to try the youngsters but that didn’t happen. The same old players played there. Babar needs to change this. Pakistan will face tougher situations in the future and his career itself is shaping up. It all depends on a skipper how he changes the environment of the dressing room and tests the talent in his team.