Is Pakistan better than England? Yousuf knows how to find out
Former Pakistan captain Muhammad Yousuf has a wonderful solution to the problem of deciding which team is better as the Men in Green get ready to take on England in July.
In an interview to PakPassion, former right-hand batsman said both teams should be pitted against each other on a neutral venue to find out who ‘really’ is the best.
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When asked if he thinks English experts are right in giving their team a superior chance of winning against Pakistan, Yousuf said: “I respect their opinions as [English] experts and former players but the fact is that anyone can predict what they like. The Pakistan team has had some amazing performances before and can do it again. I can understand that the experts are looking at the current performances of the England team and forecasting victory for themselves and they may well be right.”
He added: “However, if you wish to see a true comparison between both teams then only a match played in a neutral venue can really decide on which team really is the best. Both teams can probably win in their own back yards with ease.”
Test squad for England tour
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Pakistan announced its 17-man Test squad on June 6 and the 41-year-old backed chief selector Inzamamul Haq’s choice of players.
“I have full faith in what Inzamam is doing in terms of selection for the Test squad for the tour to England,” said Yousuf. “The players selected are the ones that are available and also the best players we have in the country and Inzamam has done an excellent job in taking into account their credentials. One must also remember that Inzamam’s vast experience can only be a good thing for Pakistan and I am sure he has used it to good effect in the choice of the squad for the upcoming tour.”
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Yousuf, who holds the record for most Test runs in a calendar year, said predicting a low success rate for Pakistan in England due to Sri Lanka’s bad performances is wrong.
“Let me first start by saying that people are making predictions on how the Pakistan batsmen will do based on how the Sri Lankans have coped so far,” explained Yousuf. “This to me is a big mistake. The fact is that the current Sri Lanka Test side is very weak and can in no way be compared to Pakistan.”
Yousuf said Sri Lankan vulnerability was exploited by Pakistan even on the Islanders’ home grounds.
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“They even lost at home to Pakistan and the team there wasn’t largely different to the one that is being mauled by England on the current tour,” he said. “I do recall that even us Pakistanis were overjoyed at beating Sri Lanka then but the fact is that any decent side would have beaten them. They do not have the ability to stand up to any proper bowling attack as we are currently seeing in England.”
Former veteran batsman then backed Pakistan to beat England on their home turf.
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“Pakistan are better than Sri Lanka and I will repeat that if this team is good enough to beat England in the UAE, then they are also good enough to take on England in their own back yard,” said a positive Yousuf. “If that doesn’t happen then serious questions can be asked about how Pakistan won in the UAE where they put in some extraordinary performances.”
Yousuf also commented on Afridi saying his ‘cricketing years are well behind him’ and ‘there really is no point in him continuing’.
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