ISLAMABAD: Former Pakistan all-rounder Mudassar Nazar believes the pressure of a dual role is taking its toll on Pakistan’s head coach-cum-chief selector Misbah-ul-Haq and said the former skipper had put himself in a difficult situation by accepting both the key positions.

“Misbah has put himself in a difficult situation by accepting too many roles. He should have only accepted the head coach role if he wanted a coaching position,” quoted Mudassar as saying. “At some stage, he will have to let go of one of the positions.”

Commenting on the selection of prolific batsman Fawad Alam, Mudassar said: “You can only pick 11 players in the team. Not only Karachi but the entire Pakistan gets upset when Fawad Alam is not selected. He has performed well in domestic cricket for a long time, so if you don’t play him and then lose the game, pressure is bound to get to you.”

Speaking about the upcoming Pakistan-England series, the 64-year-old player said batting would be a tough challenge for Pakistan on England pitches. However, he expressed satisfaction at the Pakistan bowling and fielding standards and said the strong slip cordon can prove beneficial for the young Pakistan bowlers.

“Pitches will be completely fresh as no cricket has taken place in England this season. If there is rain around August, which usually happens during the end of the summer, then batting will be difficult. So Pakistan batting is bound to struggle in England. Plus, they haven’t played top level cricket for a long time as well whereas, England will be coming on the back of the Test series with the West Indies,” he observed.

“Having said that, a few things are also in Pakistan’s favour. In recent times, Pakistan has performed well in England. Our slip cordon has also improved a lot. During the last two years, Asad Shafiq and few others have done a wonderful job in the slips. In England, bowlers try to get batsmen out in the slips or gully. So it is very important to have a sold slip cordon there. In past tours, Pakistan teams had suffered due to weak slip cordons,” Mudassar said.

He further said that faring well in England will be the final test for Pakistan’s premier young batsman Babar Azam to prove his mettle.

“England is the final test for Babar. Although he has toured England before, he was not tested properly. If he scores here, then no one will be able to match him. The way he is dominating the bowlers these days, it will be wonderful to see Babar doing well in England as well,” Mudassar remarked.

“Babar had a weak point that he used to drive the ball wide outside off-stump, which is a natural weakness in batsmen who grow up playing on Pakistani pitches. But in recent times, he has started playing late and has a great grip on the bat. In South Africa as well, Babar dominated Dale Steyn, who is famous for his out-swing. I think he will perform well in England as his confidence is very high right now,” Mudassar concluded.