Satisfied Umar Gul seeks better display
While the spotlight on Thursday was on comeback kid Mohammad Asif, Umar Gul silently sat in the Pakistan team dressing room, basking in the glory of a four-wicket haul that helped the visitors gain the upper hand at the start of the fourth Test against England.
Gul in fact finished with better figures (4-47) than Asif (4-56) as England’s innings folded at 173 but even as the reporters and the cameras chased his pace partner, the lanky lad from Peshawar wasn’t envious. “Asif bowled really well,” said the 22-year-old whose quartet of victims on Thursday helped him to take his series haul to 17, the most by any Pakistani bowler in this contest. “In fact the way he bowled helped me gain more confidence,” he added.
Gul, who came on this tour with 27 wickets from seven Tests, has been bowling pretty impressively in this series though he has been unable to deliver the sort of performance needed by a team from a strike bowler to win matches. But he promises that his performance would get better with each match. “I am getting better and hope that more hard work would pay off for me,” he hoped.
Asif said that the conditions favoured him and Asif on the opening day of the Test and vowed that he would come out with a more forceful showing in England’s second innings.
“We have lost two Tests on this series which is why it has become very important for us to win this one. A positive result here would certainly help us in the one-day series,” said Gul referring to Pakistan’s five-match one-day series against England to be played from August 30 to September 10.
With Asif back with a bang and the pace duo of Shoaib Akhtar and Rana Naved-ul-Hasan also in the frame for Pakistan’s one-day squad, Gul would find it difficult to get a place in the final eleven for the one-days. But he is hopeful and is in fact looking forward to do well in limited overs matches as well.
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