Waqar plays down defeat in warm up


LAHORE – Pakistan coach Waqar Younis was unfazed by the team’s five-wicket loss at the hands of the Auckland Aces in Thursday’s Twent20 warm-up match at Colin Maiden Park.
Umar Akmal’s 25 runs in the middle-order was as good as it got for the tourists’ batting as they fell to 91 all out in 17.4 overs in the opening clash of their tour of New Zealand. The hosts reached their modest target with six overs and four balls to spare, with Martin Guptill weighing in with an unbeaten 28.
“It wasn’t the ideal start but that happens sometimes when you’ve just arrived in the country and you don’t really know much about the pitch conditions,” insisted Waqar.
“I’m not really worried about it. “The batting had been undergoing a good deal of work but the batsmen failed to click in the game and no-one had taken responsibility to anchor the effort.”
The visitors now head into three Twenty20 Internationals against the Black Caps before concentrating on two Tests and six ODIs. “Hopefully in the next game it will be a different ball game. We have to work hard over the next couple of days so we don’t repeat this type of performance,” concluded Waqar ahead of the first T20I on 26 December.