ISLAMABAD            -          Former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram believes that Pakistan Super League (PSL) is the second biggest tournament in the world of Twenty20, saying the quality of bowling in the PSL is much better than Indian Premier League (IPL).

“The PSL is the second biggest tournament in the World of T20 after the IPL. But to compare the PSL with the IPL is not fair. The PSL has just started and it was the fifth addition, which was played in Pakistan, whereas the IPL is a matured tournament which was being played from 11 to 12 years,” he said while speaking on Basit Ali’s YouTube Channel on Thursday.

Wasim, who had won 17 man-of-the-match awards in 104 Tests, said he had been asking the foreign players only one question during the five years he had spent with different PSL teams including Islamabad United, Multan Sultans and now Karachi Kings. “My question was the difference between both the leagues. The answer I got was the quality of bowling in the PSL was much better than IPL. We came to knew how great the PSL was after it was held in Pakistan. Thanks to the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), PSL Franchise team owners and to the Pakistanis,” he said.

Wasim, who bagged 414 wickets and scored 2,898 runs in 104 Tests, said our young batsmen lack confidence as there was still a lot to be improved in Pakistan cricket. “We will get quality batsmen and players in the team, when our club, Under-16 and Under-19 cricket will improve,” he said and lauded batsmen Peshawar Zalmi’s Haider Ali and Multan Sultan’s Zeeshan Ashraf.

To a question, he ranked five best batsmen in the world according to him which included by ranking West Indies Great Sir Vivian Richards on top followed by New Zealand’s Martin Crowe, West Indies Brian Lara, former Pakistani skipper Inzamam-ul-Haq and Indian Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar.

Speaking about Pakistan’s upcoming tour to England which includes three Tests and as many T20s, the king of swing said: “It will be a big test for Pakistan batsmen including Babar Azam as cricket is already very tough in England with duke ball. “Due to COVID-19 pandemic, the scenario will be different this time, as players will be in isolation and quarantined. The tests will be conducted prior to every match and there will be no crowd in the stadiums,” Wasim, who turned 54 on Wednesday (June 3), said.

The legendary pacer, who bagged 502 wickets and scored 3,717 runs in 356 ODIs, said that it would be a big test for head coach Misbah-ul-Haq and company as the men in green have to play with the duke ball against the likes of England’s pacers James Anderson and Stuart Broad, who move the ball around all day.

“Apart from Babar, Haris Sohail can be an asset for Pakistan team if he remains physically fit and loses weight. Shan Masood is a good player but he needs to work on leaving the ball and driving as he mainly plays on the on-side, which will make the English bowlers bowl him outside off-stump,” he said and added among bowlers, Shaheen Shah Afridi would do well in England as long as he learns the length to bowl-on.