‘With his current form, he can win us only 5 games out of 100’: Ex-Pakistan opener on ‘X-factor’ Asif Ali’s consistency
A former Pakistan opener criticised Asif Ali, who has been in poor form lately. Labelled as the ‘X-factor’, he also failed to have an impact in the final T20I vs England.
Coming in to bat at no.6 in the final T20I against England, Pakistan's Asif Ali could only muster seven runs off nine balls as the hosts crashed to a defeat. The 31-year-old was dismissed by Chris Woakes in the 15th over and former cricketer Yasir Hameed feels he needs to perform more consistently. Calling him Pakistan's 'X-factor', Hameed also pointed out that his current form could only win five out of 100 matches.
Speaking to Cricket Pakistan, he said, "You can't predict a winner in the T20 format. You just have to see how many match-winners you have and how many X-factors do you have in your team."
"England played Salt consistently because he is an X-factor for them. He delivered for them in the last game. For us, we have Asif Ali in that role, but he hasn’t delivered consistently for Pakistan. With his current form, he can win us only five matches out of a 100, which is a low percentage. Asif needs to start delivering consistently for Pakistan."
The win also helped the visitors clinch the series 4-3 at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore. Chasing a target of 210, the hosts could only reach 142 for eight in 20 overs, despite a half-century by Shan Masood. Meanwhile, Chris Woakes was in top bowling form, grabbing three wickets as Pakistan crashed to a defeat by 67 runs. David Willey registered two dismissals for England. Initially, unbeaten knocks of 78 runs off 47 balls by Dawid Malan and 46 runs off 29 balls by Harry Brook helped England reach 209 for three in 20 overs.
After the match, the home side's captain Babar Azam said, "It was definitely difficult. With 200 runs on the board, if we lose early wickets, it puts pressure on the other batters. This series was vital for us. We need to improve in the shortest format. I also mentioned at the toss, that we have a good bowling attack. Haris is bowling well, and he is improving everyday. I think entire Pakistan was waiting for this, even we were happy to host England."