Pakistan batsman Azhar Ali praised the ongoing training camp, citing that the Fast-Track Coaching Programme has provided match-like conditions for the players. Ali, along with a number of other players are currently training at the National Cricket Academy under the supervision of former players including chief selector Mohsin Khan, Sarfraz Nawaz, Ijaz Ahmed and Abdul Qadir.
“The advantage is that we are training with fast-bowlers who are hitting the deck hard,” said Ali. “As a batsman it helps us learn and perform better in international matches.
“Muhammad Talha and Sohail Khan are both bowling at remarkable speed and this will help us handle pressure.
“The bowlers are really giving it their all in the nets here. So this is something we are making use of because normally bowlers don’t exert themselves in training,” added Ali.
The 26-year-old is an emerging batsman for Pakistan and has established himself in very little time. He has scored eight half-centuries in 12 Tests but is yet to score a hundred.
Ali also urged that there is dire need for a well-composed batsman who can lead Pakistan in the longer-format of the game.
“The focus in the camp is on handling pressure and playing a solid innings,” added Ali. “We are facing various fast-bowlers here on unpredictable pitches. The conditions are very tough under the clouds as the pitches behave differently every other day.
“Batting in such conditions will definitely help us build our innings and be more dictating in the role of a batsman,” added Ali.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 16th, 2011.
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