36-Year-Old Batsman Pakistan
June 18, 2017 Mohammad Hafeez News
RotoWire Fantasy Analysis
Hafeez raced to 57 off 37 not out with four boundaries and three maximums in Sunday's victory over India in the Champions Trophy final.
Hafeez hadn't put up too many big scores early in the tournament, but had been relatively consistent, scoring more than 25 runs in three of the first four matches, but his unbeaten 31 against England showed promise of something more and he certainly delivered at the death for Pakistan in the final. Stepping into the crease for the final ten-plus overs, he put together a big partnership with Imad Wasim to push them well over the 300 barrier to 338 thanks to their 71 runs at a 9.46 run rate, the quickest partnership of the match.
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Fantasy AnalysisHaffez's 72 helped Pakistan to their first win down under in 12 years. The 36-year-old stand-in captain had a bit of luck along the way, he was dropped on zero by Australia captain Steve Smith at second slip and again on 55 despite a fantastic effort from Pat Cummins. Hafeez also contributed to Australia's low total in the first innings although he went wicketless, he bowled 10 overs for just 45 runs.
Fantasy AnalysisHafeez's late inclusion comes after a special request made by Pakistan captain Azhar Ali and coach Mickey Arthur was granted by the Pakistan Cricket Board. One reason for that request could be that the 36-year-old allrounder's bowling action has recently been cleared after a year-long ban, adding another spin option to Pakistan's lineup. Hafeez hasn't played any international cricket since was dropped during Pakistan's tour of England in 2016.
Fantasy AnalysisOpening batsman Hafeez was the first to fall for Pakistan on Sunday, thanks to an unforced error that saw his shot clear far too high off a short ball from Stuart Broad. Hafeez's sixth-over dismissal for just two runs turned out to be an ill omen for the visiting side, who managed only 201 runs in the innings to stay well short of England's lead.
Fantasy AnalysisHafeez ended this part of the series as the leading run producer on either side with 273, so it was no surprise that he ended Sunday's match as Pakistan's top scorer. However, the output actually ranked second-worst among his five performances. With a century and two 50s on the ledger, he posted a 54.60 average and 91.30 strike rate across the five ODIs.
Fantasy AnalysisHafeez was the key cog in the first ODI on July 11, swiping a four-for and smashing the 10th century of his career in the format. Such outbursts haven't been a rare occurrence in 2015, as he's accrued 80 or more runs in three of his last six ODIs. While his 57.83 average and 96.12 strike rate during that stretch is formidable, he's supplemented his batting prowess with seven wickets, which have fallen every 30.8 balls at a 5.25 economy rate.
Fantasy AnalysisThe match acted as a warmup for Pakistan's upcoming tour of Bangladesh, which commences on Apr. 17. Hafeez will be available for selection for the three ODIs, one T20I, and two Tests, but it's evident that his bowling action has yet to be ruled upon. After taking a biometric test last Thursday, he stated his confidence that it went well. However, he'll be contained to the strike until his revised action receives clearance.
Fantasy AnalysisAfter his suspension from bowling internationally in December of 2014, Hafeez's previous reassessment on Feb. 6 was delayed due to calf and foot injuries, which eventually ruled him out for the World Cup before it started. If he's given the all-clear, he'll once again be eligible for selection to Pakistan's Test and ODI squads going forward.
Fantasy AnalysisNasir Jamshed will replace him on the Pakistan roster.
Fantasy AnalysisIn November, Hafeez was suspended from all international cricket events thereafter when his action exceeded the 15-degree limit set by the ICC during Pakistan's Test series versus New Zealand. He's put in work in the meantime, but during an unofficial test last month in a lab in Chennai, India, his arm bend ranged between 12 and 19 degrees. If he's unable to fix the issue, Pakistan will be down another bowler for the World Cup -- also, Junaid Khan (thigh) -- but Hafeez will likely remain on the squad as a batsman, according to cricket.com.au.