Pakistan’s one-day captain Azhar Ali Wednesday showed disappointment over team’s slump to their lowest-ever ninth rankings, saying they need to beat top ranked teams to improve.
Pakistan slumped a rung to ninth in the annual update of ICC one-day rankings, sparking fears that if they don’t improve and be amongst the top eight teams by September 30, 2017 they will have to qualify for the 2019 World Cup.
Ali said the signs are worrying but he is optimistic that things will improve.
“We are aware of the slump,’ Ali told.”We know we have to beat top teams to lift in the rankings and we are quite determined to do that.”
Pakistan lost 16 of their 29 one-day internationals, winning 12 with one no result in the last 13 months.
Ali took over as captain after the World Cup and was instantly criticized as Pakistan were routed 3-0 by Bangladesh – their first series loss to fast-rising neighbours.
Pakistan beat Sri Lanka 3-2 and won two series against Zimbabwe, at home 2-0 and away 2-1. They also lost 3-1 to England and 2-0 to New Zealand.
Ali said Pakistan should have won in New Zealand early this year.
“If you look at the series in New Zealand we did not avail crucial opportunities and that failed us,” said Ali. “We gave tough time to New Zealand they are a strong team and we should have won that series.”
Ali hoped a new selection committee and a new coach will help make better plans.
“I think a new selection committee and a new coach will help better planning and I am optimistic that the boys will lift their performances to help us rise which we badly need.”
Pakistan have five ODIs in England, two in Ireland before five or three against the West Indies and six in Australia.
“Beating England in England will be tough but we have to be at our best and the only way we can improve our rankings is to beat better and higher ranked teams.