'Umar Akmal doesn't have Virat Kohli's class'

Perth, Feb 27: Pakistan cricket fraternity might rate Umar Akmal very highly but none among country's current batsmen can be "even distantly compared" with India's premier batsman Virat Kohli, feels former Pakistan all-rounder Mudassar Nazar.

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"Look there is a vast difference in pedigree of Virat and Akmal. Both Akmal and Ahmed Shahzad played in that Under-19 World Cup in Kuala Lumpur where Virat led India. Even then you knew that Virat's class was altogether different.

File photo of Umar Akmal

"Even though he is talented but sorry to say that Umar never belonged to that league as the gulf in standard was so huge," Mudassar, one of Pakistan's finest all-rounders in the 1980s, told PTI in an interview at the WACA here today.

In fact, Mudassar, who is here as batting consultant of the UAE national team, had no hesitation in stating that "Virat along with AB de Villiers and David Warner are the three best batsmen in world cricket today".

Talking about Pakistan cricket, the veteran of 76 Tests and 122 ODIs seemed completely disillusioned.

"Well, what you see now is all that Pakistan cricket possess. After this batch of players exit, I shudder to think from where the next batch of players will come," he said while genuinely sounding worried.

"But I would still look at one of the positive aspects like Pakistan's fast bowling strength which is still better than some of the other nations. Unfortunately, whatever fast bowlers Pakistan produced in last few years have all been prone to injury.

Our best talent, Junaid Khan also got injured." Mudassar, whose career-best Test score of 231 came against India in Hyderabad (Sind) in 1983, cited multiple reason for Pakistan's failure.

"There are multiple reasons for Pakistan's inconsistent performances. Compared to India, Pakistan's bench strength is next to nothing. In fact, India's Ranji Trophy structure was always very strong and with advent of IPL, it has made it even easier to have a strong supply line.

India's financial might has helped them run their state of the art academies in a smooth manner," he lamented.


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