Inept, out of their depth, inexperienced, are all words used to sum up Pakistan's batting performance this summer. It has quite simply been woeful. Just three fifties now in five innings, and a top six mustering an average of 144, inflated largely by Australia's inability to maximise on bowler-friendly conditions.
The statistic is quite simply frightful for a side who just four years ago, here in England, boasted a colossal middle order who all averaged in the fifties and scored big on even green decks. The retirement of Inzamam Ul Haq, the retirement of Mohammad Yousuf and the banishment of Younis Khan led Pakistan's selector down a path of youth, like some sort of political scheme to curb the restless ways of radical juveniles.
Though against Australia they showed a degree of promise, against a ripe England attack, all members of the batsmen's club, junior and senior, inexperienced and, well fractionally more experienced, were found wanting.
Calls for the return of Yousuf and Younis, the former who now looks destined to take some part, have been greeted like marmite. But even those heavily opposed must now realise that without our henchmen, this side will be unable to muster scores - against England, in England - which are adequate enough for their bowlers to work with.
And what bowlers! Given the strong and cultured attacks that Mohammad Asif, Mohammad Aamer and Umar Gul have been opposition to, Pakistan's seamers have been everything their batsmen have not. Exemplary, full throttle, skillful....world class.
Commentators in England (and no doubt India) will be having a right ol' chuckle at the sight of star studded helmets clutching willow. But their genuinely star studded bowling attack will be having a chuckle to themselves. And why wouldn't you? with averages in the low twenties against two of test cricket's powerhouses, underlining your status as the best pace trio in test cricket, you deserve to.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!