Former Pakistan skipper Ramiz Raja believes that Afghanistan is capable of defeating Pakistan in T20Is. Afghanistan have few quality players like Hazratullah Zazai, Najibullah Zadran, Mohammed Nabi and Rashid Khan, who are very good in the shorter formats. Zazai, who is playing for Peshawar Zalmi, has played an important role in taking Peshawar Zalmi to the finals of the PSL 6. He bagged the Man of the Match award, hammering a 44 ball 66 in the Eliminator 2. Earlier, he smacked 77 off 38 balls in Eliminator 1 against Karachi Kings.
Raja hailed Zazai on his YouTube channel and said that Afghanistan have few good players up their ranks and he won’t be surprised if they beat Pakistan if a T-20 series is held between the two sides.
“Pakistani fans had not seen a lot of Zazai before. There are a few more players like him in the Afghanistan team. Islamabad United had three T20 players, who are in the current Pakistan team. They bowled to Zazai, including Shadab Khan, who is the vice-captain of the Pakistan T20 team. But, none of them could make any impact on Zazai, who has raw talent and ability. His temperament is really strong. This is the attitude that makes Afghanistan a dangerous side. I wouldn’t be surprised if Afghanistan upset Pakistan if two T20 matches are played between the two teams.”
Raja further went on to say that Afghanistan had a very strong bowling attack but their batting was a little weak. But with players like Najibullah Zadran and Hazratullah Zazai, their batting has also started coming good. Raja further questioned why Pakistan have failed to produce players like Zazai who can perform under pressure.
“Afghanistan have very good spinners, they have experience in Rashid Khan, and a lot of very good talent. They looked slightly weak in the batting department. But, if Zazai continues to play this way (things could change). They also have (Najibullah) Zadran. We have seen how nicely he had anchored the innings in the middle-order during the PSL itself. Pakistan should hear the danger bells ringing. They need to find out why they cannot produce players like Zazai, who can stand up and deliver under pressure. They need to introspect.”