Sarfaraz warns Pakistan must improve ahead of India clash

Sarfraz Ahmed. (AFP/File)
Updated 13 June 2019
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Sarfaraz warns Pakistan must improve ahead of India clash

  • Says Pakistan made too many mistakes in Wednesday's match where they were dismissed for 266 in 45.4 overs
  • Pakistan faces India on Sunday, has never beaten the side in six World Cup matches since 1992

TAUNTON, United Kingdom: Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmed said his side’s had to raise their fielding standards ahead of a crucial World Cup match against arch-rivals India at Old Trafford on Sunday.
Pakistan once again produced some sloppy out-cricket in a 41-run group stage defeat by champions Australia at Taunton on Wednesday, dropping three catches amid other misfields.
“We need to improve because if we want to beat bigger teams like Australia and India then all three aspects of the game are crucial,” said Sarfaraz.
“Definitely I think the fielding needs improvement — the fielding is not up to the mark,” the wicket-keeper admitted. “We work together again, and work hard before the India match.”
Pakistan have never beaten India in six World Cup matches dating back to 1992.
Pakistan could have derailed Australia at the start, after Sarfaraz won the toss and opted to field first.
But first slip Asif Ali dropped Aaron Finch off paceman Wahab Riaz when the Australian skipper was on 26 with the total at 67.
Finch (82) and David Warner (107) took the opening stand to 146 before Mohammad Amir turned the match on its head with a career best 5-30 as Australia were bowled out for 307 in 49 overs.
Sarfaraz said Pakistan had made too many mistakes of their own in a match where they were dismissed for 266 in 45.4 overs.
They now have three points from four games, with two defeats, one win — a surprise success over tournament hosts and favorites England — and a no-result.
“We committed more mistakes than Australia,” said Sarfaraz. “We won a good toss but didn’t bowl well in the first 30 overs.”
Sarfaraz added a rapid collapse that saw three wickets lost for 11 runs as Pakistan slumped to 147-5 had also proved costly.
“I think losing three wickets in the space of 15 balls was the turning point.
“Babar (Azam, who made 30 including seven fours) was playing well and his was a soft dismissal.”
Mohammad Hafeez also fell when well set, for 46, when he hit a Finch full toss straight to deep square leg.
“The ball which Mohammad Hafeez got out to was a loose one — it should have gone over the fence,” said Sarfaraz.
“We have to overcome our mistakes because India are also a very strong team. We will assess our performance and then we will plan.”


Pakistani PM names army chief to new national development council

Updated 18 June 2019
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Pakistani PM names army chief to new national development council

  • New body will formulate policies, approve long-term planning, provide guidelines for regional cooperation
  • The formal inclusion of the army chief in a development policy-making body is an unprecedented move

ISLAMABAD: Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has approved the establishment of a new high-powered government body, the National Development Council (NDC), of which the country’s all-powerful army chief will be a member, a federal government notification issued on Tuesday said.
The memo said Khan would chair the eleven-member council comprising federal ministers, provincial chief ministers and federal secretaries. Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa’s formal inclusion in the body is unprecedented even by Pakistani standards, a country in which the military has ruled for almost half its history.
The council includes the Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs, Federal Minister for Finance/Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance, Federal Minister for Planning, Development & Reform, Federal Minister for Commerce/Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce, Industries & Production and Investment, Secretary to the Prime Minister, Secretary Foreign Affairs Division, Secretary, Finance Division, Secretary, Planning, Development & Reforms Division and the four provincial chief ministers.
The Azad Jammu and Kashmir Prime Minister, and the chief minister of Gilgit-Baltistan will be also be members of the body on invitation. The additional secretary of the Prime Minister’s Office will be the secretary of the council.
Defining the terms of reference (ToRs) of the council, the notification said it would set “policies and strategies for development, formulate and trailer policies to achieve accelerate economic growth, approve long term planning for national and regional connectivity and provide guidelines for regional cooperation.”