Pakistan lost the second Test against South Africa and have plenty of things to worry about ahead of the third Test but the team has received a boost before the third game as coach Mickey Arthur feels that spinner Shadab Khan will be fully fit by that time and will play as the fifth bowler.
In an interview with an online cricket portal, the Pakistan coach said that he is a big fan of the five-bowler strategy. He feels that gives them the added option of providing their frontline seamers with a rest while still maintaining control of the innings. But he also admitted that to do that, they need a fully fit Shadab Khan, who is a genuine allrounder.
At the same time, the coach appreciated leg spin bowler Yasir Shah. He stated that in Yasir, they have a genuinely world-class bowler, and a real match-winner.
Arthur noted that he has said it before and he will say it again that if they had taken these two matches into the fourth and fifth days, Yasir would have become a huge factor and he is confident of that. For now, he feels that the problem for them is getting there, and they have got to look at ways of doing that.
Opening batsman Fakhar Zaman has come under the scanner courtesy of his poor performances. But Arthur has backed Zaman by saying that Fakhar struggled with the short ball here, as they feared since he’s played none of his cricket on these surfaces.
But at the same time, he made it clear that the opening batsman has earned his chance to be in the side with what he did on debut and how he had performed recently.