Former Pakistan captain Rameez Raja has hit out at the Pakistan team following their One-Dy International (ODI) series loss against a second-string England side. Pakistan have lost both the ODIs in the three-match series so far - first, a nine-wicket thrashing in Cardiff, followed by a 52-run defeat at Lord's. England's main squad is under quarantine after seven members of their squad, including three players, tested positive for Covid-19 after the home series against Sri Lanka.
Raja says that the magnitude of this loss on a Richter scale would be 15. “If you map this series defeat on the Richter scale, the value of shock will clock 15. It’s a massive blow and I don't understand how one can defend it. It’s England’s No.2 team, in terms of talent,” Raja said in his latest YouTube video.
“If you take out Ben Stokes, not a single player of the team that defeated Pakistan would get selected in England’s regular team in near future. We are talking about a glorified county team that has beaten Pakistan. People underestimated them and hoped for an ODI series win in England. But look how the tables have turned that now Pakistan are under the threat of a whitewash," he continued.
“The performance isn’t defendable. If the alarm bells don’t ring now, I don’t know when they will. It’s a World Cup year, though it’s a T20 World Cup, and such headlines are unbearable Pakistan fans,” he added.
Raja also highlighted the sadness among the fans and further questioned the coaches and the team selection. “You saw their (fans') sad faces at Lord’s. They take pride in Pakistan cricket but we have lost their love and strength. Their attendance in England, Australia and even in South Africa are decreasing because their expectations are dying," Raja, who has scored close to 6,000 runs from 198 ODIs for Pakistan said.
“How much more time should be given to the coaches before their performance is judged? Extremely awful selection. Some overrated players keep on playing for Pakistan,” Raja said.
“I don’t understand how to back this team. We expect them to improve some areas and learn from their mistakes. But enough is enough. Fans are heartbroken and they have a chance to make big changes in the team otherwise it would be a tough season."
“Once again, an utterly distasteful performance from Pakistan who lost against a No.2 England team,” Raja concluded.
Pakistan have a chance to redeem themselves in the third and final ODI at Edgbaston on Tuesday (July 13). The three-match T20 International (T20I) series will follow the ODI series and is set to begin from July 16 with the first game at Trent Bridge.