‘We miss him’: Pakistan admit selection mistake
PAKISTAN could do with some Mohammad Abbas magic on Saturday.
But with Australia powering to 3-395 and already ahead by 155 in the first Test, the right-arm medium-pacer will watch on from the Gabba sidelines unable to help.
Mohammad was the man who proved the destroyer the last time the two teams met. He took 17 wickets at 10.58 in the UAE last year, troubling the Australians with his movement and consistency.
His 14-Test career has also seen him take 66 wickets at just 18.86 - the best average of any Pakistani in history.
In his place are three quicks who have taken just 40 wickets between. Pakistan insist Mohammad has been dropped on form, despite being the country's top-ranked bowler who took 2-22 against a Cricket Australia XI last week in Perth.
"Yeah, we miss Abbas," spinner Yasir Shah said.
"Abbas bowled very well last series against Australia. But that is a team decision and they have decided who is playing."
Mohammad's non-selection has been questioned by several former players, including former captain Wasim Akram.
Never was he missed more than on Friday.
Australia piled on the runs with David Warner top scoring with 151no as Pakistan struggled to bowl any real pressure with too many loose balls. Pace isn't their only problem.
Yasir claimed their only wicket but his figures of 1-101 exemplified his problems in Australia.
One of the world's best spinners, he has fallen into the same problems numerous touring tweakers have in the country.
He averages a poor 85.88 in the country across four Tests, after also struggling on Australia's pitches four summers ago when he last toured.
"I changed and mixed my pace around quite a bit today," Yasir said in Hindi on Friday.
"I bowled slow and also at times a bit fast. You have to do that on these pitches.
"They played me well again. There wasn't much support from the wicket. It's just the second day of the Test.
"You just need to find the right spot from where you can get the ball to jump and get you wickets at short-leg and at close-in positions.
"And if the ball breaks even a bit off the pitch, there's a chance of getting an edge to slip.
"That's what I tried but without much success since there wasn't much turn off the wicket. But I'll try to do the same tomorrow morning and hopefully it'll work out."
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