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Pakistan-England series – a survival challenge

Nigah Muhammad

The writer is a reporter and journalist.

International cricket has returned after months of coronavirus-enforced lockdown. West Indies has won the first international cricket match since the sport went into a global shutdown, beating England on the final day of a thrilling test match.
After completing the scheduled matches with West Indies, England will face Pakistan. The first Test match between Pakistan and England will take place on August 5, 2020. A 31-member Pakistan contingent has already reached England.
Pakistan has always faced troubles in England’s circumstances. The English team can be subdued only by playing aggressively. However, Pakistan has always preferred playing defensive cricket. Similarly, national cricket team head coach Misbah-ul-Haq and captain Azhar Ali love to play defensive cricket, which cannot provide many benefits to Pakistan during this tour.  
Pakistan’s cricket team must use its full talent and special skills to make a new history in England. Not only bowlers but also batsmen have to perform. The national cricket team cannot only rely on Babar Azam. Captain Azhar Ali, Asad Shafiq, and other batsmen will have to perform well in English conditions. As far as bowlers are concerned, the squad this time includes young bowlers who must use the ball correctly on fast wickets with correct line and length.
Shaheen Shah Afridi and Naseem Shah are two bowlers who can bowl fast and can also swing the bowl perfectly. Muhammad Abbas can also take advantage of the English conditions and can puzzle the England batsmen. Apparently, this young Pakistani team will produce weird results. It is beyond comprehension that why Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has sent a squad of youngsters for such a difficult series.
The tour of England could be a nightmare for the youngsters in the Pakistan cricket team, which will have a bad impact on the entire careers of these young players. Only experienced players in England can give better results. England’s conditions are not suitable for the debut of young players.
The English cricket team has returned to international cricket, while the Pakistan cricket team has not played an international match since February. This difference will have a significant impact on the performance of both teams. If Pakistan wins the series against England, then along with the victory, fifth-ranked Pakistan can take the third position of the ICC Test Championship from England.
Despite the coronavirus outbreak, the Pakistan Cricket Board has taken an important step by sending a team to tour England. But now Pakistan will have to beat England to retain their place in the championship, otherwise, all the hard work and sacrifices will be in vain.
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