The very historic Karachi’s National Stadium will host the first Pakistan-South Africa Test on Pakistani soil in over 13 years when the play will begin on Tuesday, 26 January 2021. The National Stadium Karachi is viewed as Pakistan’s fort of Test cricket however South Africa stays one of just two teams to have beaten the home side in the 42 matches hosted at the venue.

South Africa won here by 160 runs to take what ended up being a conclusive and decisive 1-0 lead in the last series to be played between the two teams in Pakistan. The current Pakistani batting coach Younis Khan scored a smashing century in the second innings of the match, while debutant spinner Abdur Rehman took eight wickets in the match.

Former Cricketers Welcome South African Team

Former Pakistan cricket stars are looking forward to an exciting series between both teams, as they both possess the world-class talent and promises to produce quality games. The batting coach Mohammad Yousuf who has played seven Tests against South Africa with 357 runs showed his excitement and said, “South Africa’s trip is a big milestone for cricket in the country, Pakistanis people love cricket and it is their greatest passion. There is a lot of interest in Test cricket and I have some very fond memories of playing Test cricket all over the country. I am very confident that fans will enjoy a great series as both teams will enter the series with adequate preparation and planning.” He added, “South Africa possesses experienced players but we have the advantage of playing at our home grounds. The Pakistan squad is well aware of the conditions at the National Stadium and even the new players inducted in the squad have rich experience of playing first-class cricket at the venue.”

Younis Khan having a total of 990 runs in 14 Tests against South Africa said, “After the Test tours by Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, the tour of South Africa is a magnificent occasion indeed. National Stadium is my home ground and I have played here for a long time, the conditions and pitch will suit Pakistan.” He further said, “South Africa also has some quality players which makes for a competitive series. Young Pakistan players who will play Test cricket on home soil will have a lot to gain from this experience, they will learn the nuances of the longest format and their confidence will also grow.”

Fast bowler Umar Gul having Six Tests, fifteen wickets against South Africa shared, “This is a significant series in terms of cricket homecoming as South Africa is one of the top cricketing nations. I remember the 2007 Karachi Test which South Africa won against us as I was part of the Pakistan team back then. We all wish that the Babar Azam will lead team Pakistan to a massive win, and better our record against South Africa at one of our favorite Test venues.”

Taufeeq Umar who has played Six Test matches against South Africa with 730 said, “South Africa’s tour is a very encouraging development for everyone and I am looking forward to witness what should be a keenly contested series. This series will help bring more Test cricket to our country. Both the teams are balanced and inform and we are in for a thrilling series, I wish Pakistan the very best, I believe we have the squad that can prevail in the Test series.”

Left Handed Test batsman Salman Butt also shared that, “we all welcome them and thankfully we have cricket back in Pakistan, remember it’s a cricket-loving nation and this is something that binds the whole nation together so it’s a pleasure to have them here, it would be a great learning curve for everyone especially the youngsters and a good experience for the public to see their stars.” While talking about recalling his moments when Hashim Amla scored a century, Younis khan made a century, Danish also did a wonderful century in the past, cricket memories are stronger even though we lost the match but we had a great game of cricket!” He also gave a message to be themselves and be positive and get ready for the greatest Test Series!

The slow Left Arm former bowler Abdur Rehman who scored eight wickets in the 2007 Karachi Test on debut said, “South Africa playing again at the National Stadium has brought back some wonderful memories of my debut Test in 2007. For me performing against them in my debut Test was nothing short of a dream coming true”

While talking about the team’s current bowling trio he said, “In the present squad, spinners Mohammad Nawaz, Nauman Ali, and Sajid Khan have considerable experience of first-class cricket. The trio has played a lot of cricket this season at this venue and knows well about the conditions and the pitch. The spinners along with Yasir can really trouble South Africa; Yasir will be the linchpin of the bowling attack.”

Despite the Covid-19 pandemic for almost more than a year, gear up everyone as Pakistan is going to witness one of the finest games at National Stadium Karachi, starting from January 26th, 2021.