Colombo, Sept 13: Pakistan bowling coach Morne Morkel on Wednesday said missing injured pacer Naseem Shah was a big blow but hoped that another bowler will step into his shoes during a must-win Asia Cup Super Four match against Sri Lanka.
Naseem, who injured his right shoulder during the match against India, was ruled out of the tournament today, and Zaman Khan has been named as his replacement.
Pakistan and Sri Lanka are tied on two points going into the virtual knockout match on Thursday, and the winner will face India in the final on September 17.
“Obviously, it is a big blow (absence of Naseem). It is unfortunate that he picked some little niggles. But what a fantastic opportunity for the guys you know coming in. After going down against India, it’s a must win game for us tomorrow. I’m quite excited to see new guys stepping in and showing some character,” said Morkel during the pre-match press-conference.
Morkel said losing to India was very disappointing but stressed that the team will come back stronger from the debacle.
After amassing 356 for two, India had bowled out Pakistan for 128 to register a record 228-run victory.
“After the India match, we were bitterly disappointed. For me, it is very important for the bowlers to do a bit of self-reflection, ask yourself the hard questions. Yes, credit must also go to the Indian batters.
“They put us under pressure early. Those are fantastic lessons for us before the World Cup. We are gonna grow from this and come back stronger,” said Morkel.
The former South African fast bowler hoped that Pakistan spinners would lift their game against Sri Lanka. (PTI)