Pakistan were outclassed by the Australian bowling attack featuring the seasoned likes of skipper Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood on the fourth day of the first game at Perth’s Optus Stadium as they were bundled out for 89, chasing a mammoth target of 450 runs.
With the ball, Pakistan did take all 10 Australian wickets in the first innings but at the expense of 487 runs before the hosts posted 233-5 and declared.
Hafeez was of the opinion that Pakistan had prepared well ahead of the series but their poor show was due to the lack of execution of plans.
“We couldn’t execute our skills,” he said in the post-match press conference. “We made the plans for the team but unfortunately, as a team, we couldn’t execute our plans.
“Obviously the guys wanted to, but they never applied themselves, to be honest. As a team, we made a couple of tactical errors. There were certain situations where we could have dominated.”
The second of the three-match Test series is scheduled is set to start in Melbourne from December 26 and Hafeez believed that the prospect of Pakistan equaling the series at the iconic venue couldn’t be written off.
“I’ve seen during our preparation the amount of talent these guys have,” noted the former skipper. “There’s no doubt that they can beat Australia here in Australia.
“I still believe that as a team, Pakistan can beat Australia here in Australia, but we must execute our skills when required.”
While all Pakistan batters failed to make a difference across their two innings in the first Test, veteran wicket-keeper Sarfraz Ahmed’s position in the playing XI had come under criticism despite the availability of Mohammad Rizwan on the bench.
Hafeez said while Rizwan, who boasts a decent record in Australia, may be considered for the upcoming matches, Sarfraz was included in the side on the basis of his recent performances.
“Sarfraz has given a lot of performances for Pakistan,” Hafeez observed. “In the New Zealand series in Pakistan, he was excellent.
“Yes, five to six months have passed but you give first priority to your best performers from recent series.
“Unfortunately, this match didn’t go well for Sarfraz according to our expectations. However, we can’t start thinking something totally different after one match.”