Pakistan ODI player ratings v Australia as Haris Sohail, Mohammad Rizwan get an 8 but Imam-ul-Haq disappoints

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Sohail was Pakistan's man of the series with two centuries.

Pakistan‘s 2019 ICC World Cup preparations have suffered the worst possible scenario after they were handed a crushing 5-0 loss by Australia in the ODI series held in the UAE.

The comprehensive loss was only the fourth time in history that the Men in Green had been blanked 5-0 in a bilateral series. Nothing seemed to go right for Mickey Arthur and his men against the Aussies with the absence of several senior stars like Sarfraz Ahmed dearly felt.

Having been swept aside by Aaron Finch and his men, questions will be asked of Pakistan’s World Cup credentials and rightly so.

Here, we look at how the Pakistan players fared in the five losses and rate each of them out of 10.

Imam-ul-Haq – 4

The Pakistan opener has an excellent ODI record in his short career so far but he was way below his best in his three appearances in the series where he could only register a high score of 46.

Not the best of series for Imam-ul-Haq.

Not the best of series for Imam-ul-Haq.

Shan Masood – 5

The left-hander was handed his ODI debut on the back of his impressive Test displays but failed to really seize his chance with some mixed displays. A half-century in the final ODI was his saving grace.

Abid Ali – 7

The 31-year-old became only the third Pakistan batsman to register a ton on his ODI debut in a promising start to his international career. Was dismissed for a duck in the final ODI however.

Haris Sohail – 8

The top-order batsman was one of the few positives for Pakistan from an otherwise shambolic display. The two centuries scored by Sohail should confirm his spot in Pakistan’s World Cup squad as well.

Mohammad Rizwan – 8

The wicketkeeper batsman’s display was perhaps the brightest spark in a series to forget for Pakistan with Rizwan crafting two excellent centuries. Might have confirmed his World Cup ticket as well.

Two well-crafted tons from the reserve wicketkeeper batsman.

Two well-crafted tons from the reserve wicketkeeper batsman.

Umar Akmal – 5

The middle-order batsman was given a new lease of life in international cricket but he squandered that away after failing to register a single half-century in his five appearances.

Shoaib Malik – 7

The veteran batsman did his part in the first three ODIs with an excellent half-century in Sharjah before his series was cut short.

Saad Ali – 3

The 25-year-old was given two outings to prove his worth but he failed miserably with a combined score of just 11 runs.

Faheem Ashraf – 6

The Pakistan all-rounder made just two appearances before he was handed a well-deserved rest. Did not really create the impact that would have been expected from him, especially with the ball.

Imad Wasim – 7

The stand-in Pakistan skipper looked in good touch with both bat and ball, especially the former where he played some handy quick-fire cameos down the order.

Yasir Shah – 5

The senior Pakistan leg-spinner was given a chance to prove his limited-overs credentials in the absence of Shadab Khan but he failed to really rise to the occasion with just four wickets to show for. Has probably killed any hopes he had of a World Cup call up.

Mohammad Hasnain – 5

The 18-year-old pacer was handed a debut after his excellent Pakistan Super League displays. He went wicket-less in two of his appearances and picked up two scalps in the third. Showed some promise with his raw pace but has some way to go before he can establish himself as a permanent member of the squad.

Usman Shinwari – 7

The pick of Pakistan’s pacers in the five-match series, Shinwari more than did his part by picking up five wickets in three matches including a four-wicket haul in the final ODI at Dubai.

Five wickets for Shinwari in the series in three matches.

Five wickets for Shinwari in the series in three matches.

Mohammad Abbas – 5

The Pakistan Test specialist was decent at best in his three appearances which fetched him two wickets. The seamer did not look as effective with the white-ball in hand and it will be a surprise to see him get further chances in the shorter formats.

Junaid Khan – 5

A mixed display for the pacer who has found opportunities hard to come by on a consistent basis at the international level. Did pick up three wickets in the final ODI but was also pretty expensive.

Mohammad Amir – 4

The senior Pakistan pacer’s limited-overs woes continued unabated with his World Cup credentials now looking extremely dicey. Amir was taken for 59 runs in the first ODI without any wickets to show for before being summarily dropped for the remainder of the series. Where does Amir go from here?

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Justin Langer backs in-form Glenn Maxwell to become Australia's Virat Kohli

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Maxwell has been in red-hot form for Australia of late.

Head coach Justin Langer believes Glenn Maxwell can be the Virat Kohli for Australia if he can maintain the remarkable consistency he has displayed in the recent ODI series against Pakistan and India.

Maxwell was in sensational form as Australia came from behind to beat India 3-2 in their own backyard before inflicting a 5-0 whitewash over Pakistan in the UAE.

The right-handed batsman’s career has been plagued by inconsistency but he has been in the mood over the last two months with his form in the series win over Pakistan being exceptional.

In the final three ODIs against Pakistan, Maxwell registered scores of 71, 98 and 70. Langer believes that the 30-year-old is capable of translating the form in limited-overs cricket into the Test format as well.

“The challenge for him is, and I’ve said this to him – we’ve just seen Virat Kohli, who is an extraordinarily talented player, he averages 60 (59.57) in ODI cricket; he is a great player – at the moment, in 99 games, Maxi averages 32 or 33. He can be Virat Kohli. He has got the talent to do that,” Langer was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.

Maxwell was sensational against both India and Pakistan.

Maxwell was sensational against both India and Pakistan.

“The way he played that T20 hundred in India, the way he played both T20s – we know he’s a great T20 player. His next challenge is to become a great ODI player and then potentially a Test player.

“So, there’s huge upside for him and while he keeps practicing with the purpose he’s got and winning games of cricket like he is, it’s great to have him. It’s obviously a massive challenge, isn’t it?”

Australia’s 20-run win over Pakistan in Dubai on Sunday was Maxwell’s 100th ODI appearance for his country. The right-hander has now scored 2,700 runs in those matches at an average of 33.33 with the help of one ton and 19 half-centuries.

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Pakistan coach Mickey Arthur terms Australia as genuine contenders for World Cup

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Australia completed a 5-0 whitewash of Pakistan in the UAE.

Having watched Aaron Finch and his men hand his Pakistan team a 5-0 whitewash in the ODI series held in the UAE, coach Mickey Arthur believes Australia are looking in great shape to defend their ICC World Cup crown.

The series defeat meant that it was only the fourth time in history that Pakistan had been blanked 5-0 in ODIs. For Australia, it was their eight consecutive ODI win following their impressive come-from-behind 3-2 series victory in India.

When asked if Australia is capable of winning the 2019 World Cup, Arthur said, “I definitely think they are .”

“There are travelling really well. All the final jigsaw parts are coming together nicely.

“Australia look a very, very good side They will be a threat at the World Cup … I think there’s up to seven teams that can win the World Cup.”

It has been a remarkable turnaround in fortunes for Australia after a disastrous 2018 which saw them lose 11 of the their 13 ODIs. Skipper Aaron Finch, who finished as the man of the series for scoring 451 runs, believes his side will go into the World Cup in England with a positive mindset.

Skipper Aaron Finch finished as the man of the series.

Skipper Aaron Finch finished as the man of the series.

“We’ll go to the World Cup with a lot of confidence now, even after a lot of people wrote us off,” said Finch.

“Potentially we had a real focus coming here and that was our last hit-out before the World Cup so we wanted to go into that tournament with a lot of momentum.”

Pakistan, meanwhile, had opted to rest several senior stars for the five-match series including skipper Sarfraz Ahmed and Arthur conceded it was a matter of fatigue.

“All we can do is prepare as best we can. We got on the road in September last year for the Asia Cup and then went to South Africa and then had the Pakistan Super League so we had to rest them,” the Pakistan coach explained.

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