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  1. #1
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    Who should Pakistan's third opener be for the World Cup?

    So, this much is confirmed - barring any injuries, Fakhar Zaman and Imam-ul-Haq will be opening for Pakistan against the Windies at Trent Bridge on May 31st. Who do you think should be the back-up opener?

    I see three choices

    Shan Masood
    Abid Ali
    Ahmed Shehzad (outside chance)

    Personally, I'll go with Shan Masood as he is the most deserving candidate based on recent List A form. I also see him batting well in the middle order. Abid Ali, though a sold candidate himself, is second in the pecking order because Shan is considerably fitter than him.

    Are there others that could claim the spot?

  2. #2
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    Shan is gonna stay.


    A skilled hawk conceals its talons.

  3. #3
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    Shan is the guy

  4. #4
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    Shan Masood IT IS NOT EVEN CLOSE

  5. #5
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    Not the 30 year old Masood.

    Imam+FZ is the combo of you the future and the backup should be a youngster.

  6. #6
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    Shan deserves a go.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rayyman View Post
    Not the 30 year old Masood.

    Imam+FZ is the combo of you the future and the backup should be a youngster.
    Lmao what? Shan is literally a few months older than Fakhar.


    Hai yeh Josh-e-Junoon, hai yeh apna yaqeen, ke jo tum mein hai dum, woh kisi mein nahin!

  8. #8
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    I hope Ahsan Ali (for QG) and Rizwan Hussain (for IU), get to play some PSL matches. It's disappointing that Zeeshan Malik isn't in PSL.

  9. #9
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    If PCB had any sense left they would have benched Fakhar for Shan already.

  10. #10
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    Imam should be our third opener. Shan and Fakhar should open.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyperion66 View Post
    If PCB had any sense left they would have benched Fakhar for Shan already.
    They have ten Odis to figure it out

  12. #12
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    The way shan is improving he will be opening the batting alongside Imam.


    جاگن والیاں رجّ کے لٹیا اے،
    سوئے تسیں وی او، سوئے اسیں وی آں۔

  13. #13
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    There doesn't necessarily have to be one. Hafeez is capable of opening if one of FZ/Imam has to be rotated out in the tournament. I guess the PSL will play a big part.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Square Drive View Post
    Lmao what? Shan is literally a few months older than Fakhar.
    Did you even read the post?

    FZ+Imam will start as openers for the next few years.

    Shan has no chance of breaking into the XI.

    Idk why everybody loves this guy. He averages 35 in one test series and people are calling him Pak's best bat in all formats and future captain.
    Last edited by Rayyman; 13th February 2019 at 20:16.

  15. #15
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    Rafatullah Mohmand is an option if he has improved his game by now.

  16. #16
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    Shan based off his work in the domestic shorter form BUT I think the PSL can tell us about some of the younger openers out there, if any.

  17. #17
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    Depends a bit on the PSL now. Shan was in good nick but didn't get a chance during the ODI series. Lets see if Shahzad has improved or is still the useless version of himself at the moment


    "The Indian bowling attack is as devastating as the Teletubbies"- Sir Ian Botham

  18. #18
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    Should be Shan Masood, ideally he'd been given a few matches before the WC but that seems unlikely

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rayyman View Post
    Did you even read the post?

    FZ+Imam will start as openers for the next few years.

    Shan has no chance of breaking into the XI.

    Idk why everybody loves this guy. He averages 35 in one test series and people are calling him Pak's best bat in all formats and future captain.
    he can easily be slotted in the middle order.

    he deserves a run in the odi side on merit

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chokli View Post
    he can easily be slotted in the middle order.

    he deserves a run in the odi side on merit
    You saw what happened to KL Rahul?

    Haris/Saud are better at #4 than Shan.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyperion66 View Post
    If PCB had any sense left they would have benched Fakhar for Shan already.
    Why ? Fakhar just scored 70 in the deciding ODI v SAF. Against non-minnows he averages 41 at a SR of 88.

    He did struggle earlier in the tour but many of our Pakistani batting greats failed in SAF. Other than him there's nobody else to produce fast starts for Pakistan with Sharjeel still out.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rayyman View Post
    Did you even read the post?

    FZ+Imam will start as openers for the next few years.

    Shan has no chance of breaking into the XI.

    Idk why everybody loves this guy. He averages 35 in one test series and people are calling him Pak's best bat in all formats and future captain.
    I believe you have not looked at his recent List A performances, which were hugely impressive. He now averages 56 in List A cricket.

    You saw what happened to KL Rahul?

    Haris/Saud are better at #4 than Shan.
    Last I checked, KL Rahul and Shan Masood are not the same person.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rayyman View Post
    You saw what happened to KL Rahul?

    Haris/Saud are better at #4 than Shan.
    just because it happened to him doesn't mean it's the norm now.

    haris is always injured, saud needs chances but shan is ahead in the pecking order

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by omairsiddiqui View Post
    I believe you have not looked at his recent List A performances, which were hugely impressive. He now averages 56 in List A cricket.



    Last I checked, KL Rahul and Shan Masood are not the same person.
    Quote Originally Posted by Chokli View Post
    just because it happened to him doesn't mean it's the norm now.

    haris is always injured, saud needs chances but shan is ahead in the pecking order
    You guys are just looking at stats.

    I can show you some stats
    2nd ODI vs Eng A: 120 (110)
    3rd ODI vs Eng A: 12 (30)
    4th ODI vs Eng A: 4 (15)
    5th ODI vs Eng A: 0 (3)
    6th ODI vs Eng A: 60 (90)

    He struggled to play at a good rate vs Eng A, what will he do vs Aus. and NZ?

    Good Test player but no point being a backup ODI player at 31.

    You need to look at technique and ability, not stats.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rayyman View Post
    You guys are just looking at stats.

    I can show you some stats
    2nd ODI vs Eng A: 120 (110)
    3rd ODI vs Eng A: 12 (30)
    4th ODI vs Eng A: 4 (15)
    5th ODI vs Eng A: 0 (3)
    6th ODI vs Eng A: 60 (90)

    He struggled to play at a good rate vs Eng A, what will he do vs Aus. and NZ?

    Good Test player but no point being a backup ODI player at 31.

    You need to look at technique and ability, not stats.
    Ahh, so first 29-year-old Shan was 30, now he's 31. Nice.


    Hai yeh Josh-e-Junoon, hai yeh apna yaqeen, ke jo tum mein hai dum, woh kisi mein nahin!

  26. #26
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    Is Shaan playing in the PSL?

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Markhor View Post
    Why ? Fakhar just scored 70 in the deciding ODI v SAF. Against non-minnows he averages 41 at a SR of 88.

    He did struggle earlier in the tour but many of our Pakistani batting greats failed in SAF. Other than him there's nobody else to produce fast starts for Pakistan with Sharjeel still out.
    Sirji I trust my eyes and observations more than stats and spreadsheets. It's been a very long time since I have seen such a limited batsman opening for a top team. I don't remember seeing him string together an innings without being lucky a few times. His novelty factor has worn off and that little bit of fear factor still around him will fade away sooner than Amir's morality, teams have already found him out as evident from his recent performances. Outside his comfort zone he is like an open base waiting to be carpet bombed. I don't have the patience of @MMHS to anatomize his technique piece by piece but I think even his biggest supporters here wouldn't deny the glaring weaknesses in his batting. Bringing him to the WC will only add up to his misery and if Pak willing to take the risk of being 10/1 9 out of 10 in pursuit of an mythical match winning innings then by all means go for it. Sorry I don't think his 70 odd in the last match is worth a rating. I remember during his UAE phase people were like 'Oh he likes the ball to come onto bat, these slow low dead pitches don't deserve him' after SA series the fans still making excuses will eventually realize that he just isn't good enough against decent attacks. Even as an Indian fan I hope that this inevitable realization don't result in painful memories for Pak fans during WC.

    With respect, the other greats being poor in SA hence Fakhar is excusable is a poor logic, the likes of Inzi and Dravid don't have a very good record in SA but more than make up for that in every other facets, no one in his right mind should compare any of the past greats with him. Shan with the little chances he got already proved to be the best bat against quality pace in the team or perhaps only behind Babar, he should have been an automatic opening choice by now, baffles my mind how it even invokes a debate.

    These are just my opinions based on my observations and if I am proven wrong in the WC you can call me out, I will still be around eating my share of that humble pie.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyperion66 View Post
    Sirji I trust my eyes and observations more than stats and spreadsheets. It's been a very long time since I have seen such a limited batsman opening for a top team. I don't remember seeing him string together an innings without being lucky a few times. His novelty factor has worn off and that little bit of fear factor still around him will fade away sooner than Amir's morality, teams have already found him out as evident from his recent performances. Outside his comfort zone he is like an open base waiting to be carpet bombed. I don't have the patience of @MMHS to anatomize his technique piece by piece but I think even his biggest supporters here wouldn't deny the glaring weaknesses in his batting. Bringing him to the WC will only add up to his misery and if Pak willing to take the risk of being 10/1 9 out of 10 in pursuit of an mythical match winning innings then by all means go for it. Sorry I don't think his 70 odd in the last match is worth a rating. I remember during his UAE phase people were like 'Oh he likes the ball to come onto bat, these slow low dead pitches don't deserve him' after SA series the fans still making excuses will eventually realize that he just isn't good enough against decent attacks. Even as an Indian fan I hope that this inevitable realization don't result in painful memories for Pak fans during WC.

    With respect, the other greats being poor in SA hence Fakhar is excusable is a poor logic, the likes of Inzi and Dravid don't have a very good record in SA but more than make up for that in every other facets, no one in his right mind should compare any of the past greats with him. Shan with the little chances he got already proved to be the best bat against quality pace in the team or perhaps only behind Babar, he should have been an automatic opening choice by now, baffles my mind how it even invokes a debate.

    These are just my opinions based on my observations and if I am proven wrong in the WC you can call me out, I will still be around eating my share of that humble pie.
    I'm aware of his technical limitations but despite them he's achieved a record of 41@88 against top teams which is excellent for our standards and hardly shows him to be a basher of weak attacks (that'd be Shoaib Malik). He also has performed in big occasions as evident by his record in deciders and finals (CT17, the T20 tri series final v Aus, and the decider v NZ in UAE in Nov 18).

    Remember he was one of few Pakistani batsmen to perform in NZ (avg 50 with two half centuries) last year when everyone else was collapsing like pins against Boult and co.

    Pakistan don't have a long line of explosive, technically flawless one day openers ready to take Fakhar's place. Shan Masood did not face the new ball in the Test series, but certainly looked impressive. However his inclusion depends on Fakhar or Imam meriting dropping (unless he plays in the middle order), and I don't think either does at this moment.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rayyman View Post
    You guys are just looking at stats.

    I can show you some stats
    2nd ODI vs Eng A: 120 (110)
    3rd ODI vs Eng A: 12 (30)
    4th ODI vs Eng A: 4 (15)
    5th ODI vs Eng A: 0 (3)
    6th ODI vs Eng A: 60 (90)

    He struggled to play at a good rate vs Eng A, what will he do vs Aus. and NZ?

    Good Test player but no point being a backup ODI player at 31.

    You need to look at technique and ability, not stats.
    why did you take out his 161?

    he deserves a run based on his list a record and the determination he showed in the test matches in south africa.


    Quote Originally Posted by Square Drive View Post
    Ahh, so first 29-year-old Shan was 30, now he's 31. Nice.

  30. #30
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    Shan but they should atleast give him a debut in the Australia or England series

  31. #31
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    Preferably an aggressive and hard hitter player like Rizwan Hussain, Sharjeel Khan or Nasir Nawaz.

    But wont mind Shan due to his current domestic one day form.


    Sarfi as captain'll lead us to glory.Babar'll be our best odi bat & Haris'll be world class in tests

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyperion66 View Post
    Sirji I trust my eyes and observations more than stats and spreadsheets. It's been a very long time since I have seen such a limited batsman opening for a top team. I don't remember seeing him string together an innings without being lucky a few times. His novelty factor has worn off and that little bit of fear factor still around him will fade away sooner than Amir's morality, teams have already found him out as evident from his recent performances. Outside his comfort zone he is like an open base waiting to be carpet bombed. I don't have the patience of @MMHS to anatomize his technique piece by piece but I think even his biggest supporters here wouldn't deny the glaring weaknesses in his batting. Bringing him to the WC will only add up to his misery and if Pak willing to take the risk of being 10/1 9 out of 10 in pursuit of an mythical match winning innings then by all means go for it. Sorry I don't think his 70 odd in the last match is worth a rating. I remember during his UAE phase people were like 'Oh he likes the ball to come onto bat, these slow low dead pitches don't deserve him' after SA series the fans still making excuses will eventually realize that he just isn't good enough against decent attacks. Even as an Indian fan I hope that this inevitable realization don't result in painful memories for Pak fans during WC.

    With respect, the other greats being poor in SA hence Fakhar is excusable is a poor logic, the likes of Inzi and Dravid don't have a very good record in SA but more than make up for that in every other facets, no one in his right mind should compare any of the past greats with him. Shan with the little chances he got already proved to be the best bat against quality pace in the team or perhaps only behind Babar, he should have been an automatic opening choice by now, baffles my mind how it even invokes a debate.

    These are just my opinions based on my observations and if I am proven wrong in the WC you can call me out, I will still be around eating my share of that humble pie.
    His batting technique/range of shots are not good and his defense, shot selections are even worse. Normally such players are hand-eye players who scores quickly and sometimes in bulk when in form (read purple patch); but once they reach 30+ age their reflex & eye sight starts to betray. Even when he is in form (I put that as when he is scoring lot), you'll notice that most of his dismissals are ugly looking - tailenderisque, either a skier which often travels more vertically than horizontally, or missing straight balls and trapped in front or poke in the arc and often this catches (dismissals) are from slicing shots - shoulder towards mid-on/mid-wicket; head towards squire leg and ball skied on extra cover or mid-offs head. Gradually once his novelty is exposed and International teams analyse his games, his scores starts to get lower.

    If you look at his performance by series, often you'll see his stay at wicket is getting smaller with the age of the series, which ideally should be opposite for better batsmen - once you acclimatize with the condition, it should be easier for batsmen, might not score big always, but should look more comfortable, Fakhar looks more confused. Viru Sehwag (Absolutely no comparison even by imagination) was like this - hand-eye player, but a monster against spin - even he faded away by the age of 32-33.

    Having said that, FZ is the 2nd most important batsman in PAK LO squad, because he is not selfish and a hard worker in field. If he stays for 50 balls he'll get a 50, if he can manage 100 balls, he'll win most games. He is already close to 30 and most likely won't last more than few years, therefore PAK should cash on his peak few years in LO - opener in T20I and No. 3 in ODI. Ideally he should be in the plan for this WC and the next 2 T20 WCs in 2020 & 2021 - that's it.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by MMHS View Post
    His batting technique/range of shots are not good and his defense, shot selections are even worse. Normally such players are hand-eye players who scores quickly and sometimes in bulk when in form (read purple patch); but once they reach 30+ age their reflex & eye sight starts to betray. Even when he is in form (I put that as when he is scoring lot), you'll notice that most of his dismissals are ugly looking - tailenderisque, either a skier which often travels more vertically than horizontally, or missing straight balls and trapped in front or poke in the arc and often this catches (dismissals) are from slicing shots - shoulder towards mid-on/mid-wicket; head towards squire leg and ball skied on extra cover or mid-offs head. Gradually once his novelty is exposed and International teams analyse his games, his scores starts to get lower.

    If you look at his performance by series, often you'll see his stay at wicket is getting smaller with the age of the series, which ideally should be opposite for better batsmen - once you acclimatize with the condition, it should be easier for batsmen, might not score big always, but should look more comfortable, Fakhar looks more confused. Viru Sehwag (Absolutely no comparison even by imagination) was like this - hand-eye player, but a monster against spin - even he faded away by the age of 32-33.

    Having said that, FZ is the 2nd most important batsman in PAK LO squad, because he is not selfish and a hard worker in field. If he stays for 50 balls he'll get a 50, if he can manage 100 balls, he'll win most games. He is already close to 30 and most likely won't last more than few years, therefore PAK should cash on his peak few years in LO - opener in T20I and No. 3 in ODI. Ideally he should be in the plan for this WC and the next 2 T20 WCs in 2020 & 2021 - that's it.
    Really appreciate your input sirji. In-depth and point by point analysis as always.


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