The Talent Spotter : Haris Sohail

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At 23 years of age, left handed middle order batsman Haris Sohail is being earmarked by many as a strong candidate for a place in the Pakistani middle order.

A solid and consistent batsman for ZTBL, Sohail averages over 46 in first class cricket and has 19 half centuries and 6 centuries already under his belt. An excellent season this time around in the First Division of the Quaid E Azam Trophy and selection for the PCB XI recently against England has really brought Haris into the limelight.

A highest score of 211 not out, the Sialkot born batsman is currently representing Punjab in the ongoing Pentangular Trophy against Federal Areas. In Punjab's total of 226 all out today, Haris top scored with 77.

PakPassion caught up with Haris with a view to finding out a little more about him, how he got into cricket, his favourite players and his career aspirations.


PakPassion.net : Haris it's good to speak with you. Do tell us all how you got into cricket?

Haris Sohail : Like all my friends I got interested in cricket at school. At first it was just for fun, in parks and at school, but gradually I became more serious about my cricket. I went for Under 19 trials with Sialkot and impressed the coaches there and was selected.

The Sialkot coaches at the camp organised a match of all the boys that had impressed them and thankfully I managed to make a good score in that side match. From there the interest in cricket developed and I started taking my cricket more seriously


PakPassion.net : So you played all of your junior cricket in Sialkot or did you move out of the area?

Haris Sohail : I played all of my junior cricket in the Sialkot region before making my first class debut for Sialkot against Karachi Whites in 2007.


PakPassion.net : How did the jump from Sialkot Under 19s to the Sialkot first team come about?

Haris Sohail : I was the captain of the Sialkot Under 19s in the 2006/2007 season and we reached the final of the Under 19 tournament against Rawalpindi. I scored a century in the final and we won the match. Straight after the final I was told that I would be playing for Sialkot against Karachi in the Quaid E Azam Trophy. It was a hectic journey as I travelled straight after the Under 19 final to Gujranwala onto Lahore and then got a flight to Karachi to play the next day.


PakPassion.net : How long were you at Sialkot for and how did the move to ZTBL come about?

Haris Sohail : I played for Sialkot for one season only before I moved to ZTBL in 2008. This is my fourth season at ZTBL.


PakPassion.net : You currently bat in the middle order. Have you always been a middle order batsman or have you perhaps opened the innings too in the past?

Haris Sohail : I've always batted in the middle order.


PakPassion.net : Your favourite/best shot?

Haris Sohail : That would be the straight drive and the on-drive.


PakPassion.net : Your favourite batsmen and heroes of the past?

Haris Sohail : That would be Brian Lara, Saeed Anwar and Mike Hussey. All great left handers, all different types of batsmen but great to watch and to learn from.


PakPassion.net : You've gradually improved as a batsman and last season was a very good season for you in the Quaid E Azam Trophy. What areas of your game are you looking to improve upon?

Haris Sohail : The plan is to be a successful sportsman and do myself justice and my family proud. I have big hopes and ambitions and of course I want to play for my country for a long time. As a cricketer, each day you wake up and you look to learn and to improve. The opportunities are endless, it's down to the individual to make the best of those opportunities.


PakPassion.net : You've had a particularly good season this time around in the Quaid E Azam Trophy, scoring just under 900 runs at an average of over 50. Today you've scored 77 in the Pentangular Cup for Punjab. What do you put this good run of form down to?

Haris Sohail : Technically I made a few adjustments to what we thought were weak points in my batting. Before the Quaid E Azam Trophy started I worked really hard on some areas of my batting and thankfully that hard work seems to have paid off.


PakPassion.net : You've been selected for the Punjab team in the Pentangular Cup. You must be pleased and see it as another opportunity to shine?

Haris Sohail : Yes it's valuable experience because you get the opportunity to play against the best of the other region's players. My form is good, the confidence is high and I'm hopeful that this competition will also be a successful one for me.


PakPassion.net : You were a member of the PCB XI team that recently played against England, tell us about that experience?

Haris Sohail : No doubt about it, the experience was a wonderful one. To get the opportunity to play against the excellent England bowling attack was brilliant. Unfortunately I could only score 6 and 11 respectively but I learnt so much from the experience. Obviously I hope that in future I get more chances such as this to play against top class bowlers.


PakPassion.net : Your hopes and plans for the future?

Haris Sohail : I just pray that I can do my level best for my domestic team and if the chance comes in future for my country.


PakPassion.net : Best wishes for the future.

Haris Sohail : Many Thanks.
 

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his small experience with england will and should have showed him the highest level is different and harder, but its something to aim for ,
 
this guy is a Test cricketer in the making.

excellent technique and temperament, and very mature and responsible batsman for his age.

we will see him at intl. level very soon.
 
Thanks for the interview PP. I think Pakistan need a left handed batsman in the middle order. If he carries on performing well then he may get a chance......
 
Usman salahuddin is still ahead of him, but yea i agree, we good batsman, if he can find a consistency to play a good inning every match and increases his overall domestic seasons average to 70+ and has more centuries, he will be ready.
 
I saw this kid live during the warm game against England at the icc ground. He didn't last especially long, but I liked what I saw. He was assured against the spinners, looked a stylish lefthander, pleasant on the eyes. I think he has a future. If we had a well organized PCB guys like him, us an salahuddin, afaq raheem would be being developed through A Team tours etc.
 
Definitely one to keep an eye on in future.
 
Very impressive.

Looks to have a lot of time at the crease, always the sign of a class player.
 
scored a 150 in his last first class game at a strike rate of 107, i always like having left handers in the middle order
 
Very impressive.

Looks to have a lot of time at the crease, always the sign of a class player.

The most impressive thing, played shots in the gap, played shots all over, able to rotate the strike quite well, knows ho to hit the boundaries.

But he is not a tullay baaz, so no future with Pakistan team ( or among fans).
 
young and excellent hand eye coordination...

loved how he played each ball on merit... no slogging. Good stuff
 
Very impressed with him. Really glad he's in our team now, strengthens the batting greatly. Looks a good future international prospect to. Proper batsman.
 
Very impressive.

Looks to have a lot of time at the crease, always the sign of a class player.


Was he in ur list of 25 to Dav? He is in my 25.


Some years back, I used to do voluntary scouting for few clubs of different level; had a very good database of the then Pak/Ind/Lankan domestic players - who were relatively cheap but with very good value for money players at our domestic level (often those were in early 20s, just on the verge of international call). Clubs hardly wasted money on my list.

Haven't seen Haris batting ever - can any one answer followings?

1. Is he hurried to play shots?
2. Does he bat with a low back lift?
3. Does he lofts spinners standing in the crease?
4. Is he a predominantly a front-foot player?
5. Does he scores more than 40% runs at "On-side"?
6. Does he uses bottom hand more than the top?
7. Does he try to hit boundaries rather trying to take singles under pressure?
8. Does he try to hit consecutive boundaries rather trying to get a single after hitting the boundary?
9. Under scoring pressure, does he try to play across, rather trying to loft straight or slash making room?
10. Does he scores more than 35% runs from blind areas (areas behind the stumps line)?

The more "No" he get, the higher he 'll go as a batsman.
 
Was he in ur list of 25 to Dav? He is in my 25.


Some years back, I used to do voluntary scouting for few clubs of different level; had a very good database of the then Pak/Ind/Lankan domestic players - who were relatively cheap but with very good value for money players at our domestic level (often those were in early 20s, just on the verge of international call). Clubs hardly wasted money on my list.

Haven't seen Haris batting ever - can any one answer followings?

1. Is he hurried to play shots?
2. Does he bat with a low back lift?
3. Does he lofts spinners standing in the crease?
4. Is he a predominantly a front-foot player?
5. Does he scores more than 40% runs at "On-side"?
6. Does he uses bottom hand more than the top?
7. Does he try to hit boundaries rather trying to take singles under pressure?
8. Does he try to hit consecutive boundaries rather trying to get a single after hitting the boundary?
9. Under scoring pressure, does he try to play across, rather trying to loft straight or slash making room?
10. Does he scores more than 35% runs from blind areas (areas behind the stumps line)?

The more "No" he get, the higher he 'll go as a batsman.

1 no
2 no
3 no
4 i guess yes
5 yes i guess
6 no
7 no
8 no
9 no idea
10 no idea
 
Lovely balance at the crease.

Smooth footwork and has a certain amount of elegance in his batting.
 
Very good technically, good footwork, great balance and very classy.

Much better than all the hacks we've seen in this Faysal bank.
 
Another thing, he actually places the ball! Rarely see that from pakistani batsmen.
 
i think whatmore will pick him as we don't have many lefties in the side
 
classy player, one to watch for sure. pak really needs some lefties too.
 
Rotates the strike real well. Well balanced, has time to play his shots and he has a good head on his shoulders it seems.

After a boundary he rotates the strike. Amazing stuff, really impressed by our future batting talent. Bowling seems a bit off.
 
So far Haris has been the find of the tournament along with Zia ul Haq.

This kid has by far the best technique and temperament to play cricket at any level ( he is even better than the current Pakistani players playing for the national team).
 
Rotates the strike real well. Well balanced, has time to play his shots and he has a good head on his shoulders it seems.

After a boundary he rotates the strike. Amazing stuff, really impressed by our future batting talent. Bowling seems a bit off.

fast bowling does not so much spin
 
Wow. What a cover drive! HAven't seen many of out international batsmen playing such shots lately. Classic batsman :moyo
 
He hasn't been dismissed all tournament..

Wow, that's even more amazing.

Interestingly you do not see too many fans chanting about him, shows the knowledge of the game who spend hours on forum talk and give their arguments about cricket. Here you see people keep talking about tullay baaz players ( based on their ethnicity) and missed the real talent.
 
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The thing about this kid that has set him aside from others in the tournament is that he has scored runs easily at very good strike rates but he hasn't hit the ball in the air at all.

He looks to be very good at rotating the strike and finding the gaps which is a rare quality for young Pakistani batsmen, even the best ones (Umar Akmal, Asad Shafiq and Azhar Ali).

Would definitely have him in and around the squad.
 
inviting wide loopie off break, and haris chips it for one, playing according to the situation and not getting carried away, very impressive.
 
Agree with Zaid. Zia-ul-Haq & Haris Sohail, the finds of the tournament.
 
Classy Batsman. And has a good head on his shoulders.
 
Also remember, he has a first class average of 46 over 71 innings and he has already scored a double ton. All this at only 23.
 
Him, Usman Salahuddin, and Fawad Alam are hopefully going to be a integral part of our middle order for years to come
 
Was he in ur list of 25 to Dav? He is in my 25.


Some years back, I used to do voluntary scouting for few clubs of different level; had a very good database of the then Pak/Ind/Lankan domestic players - who were relatively cheap but with very good value for money players at our domestic level (often those were in early 20s, just on the verge of international call). Clubs hardly wasted money on my list.

Haven't seen Haris batting ever - can any one answer followings?

1. Is he hurried to play shots?
2. Does he bat with a low back lift?
3. Does he lofts spinners standing in the crease?
4. Is he a predominantly a front-foot player?
5. Does he scores more than 40% runs at "On-side"?
6. Does he uses bottom hand more than the top?
7. Does he try to hit boundaries rather trying to take singles under pressure?
8. Does he try to hit consecutive boundaries rather trying to get a single after hitting the boundary?
9. Under scoring pressure, does he try to play across, rather trying to loft straight or slash making room?
10. Does he scores more than 35% runs from blind areas (areas behind the stumps line)?

The more "No" he get, the higher he 'll go as a batsman.

MMHS can you pease post your list of 25.

I understand saj can't do it as it has been sent to whatmore.
 
I have never seen any Pakistani left hander batsman playing this kind of cricket.

A complete package and compact player.

No offense to Asad Shafiq fans ( who has been just a mediocre), Haris is much better and suitable option than Shafiq in the middle order.
 
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risk free stroke play, and as pakpride says, places strokes. deserves a 50
 
Just hit a brilliant straight drive

Wonderfully talented, get him in
 
Thanks for that drop catch. His average will hopefully remain over a 100 now :p
 
To be fair, Malik played better than him ... whatever that says.
 
Malik always turn into bradman whenever he plays domestic cricket, he has scored runs against every team not just the dolphins

He was indirectly attacking Haris Sohail, who averages +45 in FC cricket in over 50 FC matches and with a HS of 211* who, also, remained NO for the whole tournament.
 
even if he would have not scored 50 or got out... just because of 2 classy shots I will pick him in any team... one towards mid wicket and other was cover drive....
 
I know, though it was a good inning, but coming against a mediocre bowling line-up isn't such a big achievement.

He's done it for the entire tournament and has a great FC record to back it. I'm not praising what he did but how he did it. Very refreshing.
 
He's done it for the entire tournament and has a great FC record to back it. I'm not praising what he did but how he did it. Very refreshing.

No doubt he is a very good batsman. One for the future.
 
Should be in the A team alongwith Usman Salahuddin, Gauhar Ali etc
 
He's great but please don't rush him into internationals yet. Let him get confident in domestic and enjoy heaping the runs there in all formats. We always make the mistake of rushing guys into international. Times of changed, teams aren't rushing inexperienced guys into internationals anymore where every technical deficiency can be analysed via video technology.
 
He's great but please don't rush him into internationals yet. Let him get confident in domestic and enjoy heaping the runs there in all formats. We always make the mistake of rushing guys into international. Times of changed, teams aren't rushing inexperienced guys into internationals anymore where every technical deficiency can be analysed via video technology.

He is on the top form in all form of the cricket, so you want to wait before he would loose his form and confidence for not picking up for the team when he has already performed and done the job to get into the team.

The other thing, it is not that we line up filled up with Sachin, Kohli, Dravid,...our batting line up is pathetic and joke and if you found some real good talent, you still want to wait?
 
His straight six was the shot of the match ..lovely staright bat and amazing timing.
 
He's great but please don't rush him into internationals yet. Let him get confident in domestic and enjoy heaping the runs there in all formats. We always make the mistake of rushing guys into international. Times of changed, teams aren't rushing inexperienced guys into internationals anymore where every technical deficiency can be analysed via video technology.

He has been around for a while in domestic cricket , it is the perfect time to induce him in the t20 and ODI squad. Definitely a better option than :shafiq.
 
Traditionaly Pakistan hasn't produced many class left handed batsmen. Especially in middle order I don't remember decent left handed. His age and experience is perfect to make debut. He should really be drafted in team now.
 
This is first time I saw the guy batting, along with Khaleed Latif I found this Haris is very promising, the guy played mature innings in this final, very cool headed. He got good technique too. I enjoyed his batting and Latif's batting more than those well named Nazir and Malik.
 
I think he and mansoor amjad should be in the pakistan odi team. These two sialkot players need the backing not shoaib malik
 
He is on the top form in all form of the cricket, so you want to wait before he would loose his form and confidence for not picking up for the team when he has already performed and done the job to get into the team.

The other thing, it is not that we line up filled up with Sachin, Kohli, Dravid,...our batting line up is pathetic and joke and if you found some real good talent, you still want to wait?
It's not about being on "top form". It's about maintaining that form over a long period of time. Harris has hardly even played much limited overs cricket. This tournament might be the first time he's actually played domestic T20.

For is important for experienced guys used to making runs consistently but for youngsters it isn't. The most important thing is getting used to playing cricket on the domestic scale, and them making that jump to international.

Whena guy gets comfortable in domestic and is scoring "runs for fun", that's the time to get him in. Harris is still very inexperienced in domestic. So again, no need to rush him.

If he can't keep that form up in domestic, and his average dips then simply he ain't good enough. But don't think that will be the case.

Look at the top teams, India, south africa, England, Australia. Do they rush in their batsmen? No they let them play ages in domestic then pick them when they're ready. Even look at our test batting line up, it's full of players with a lot of domestic experience behind them. It's much stronger than the one we fielded in England despite picking players who might be more talented like umar amin and umar akmal.
 
He has been around for a while in domestic cricket , it is the perfect time to induce him in the t20 and ODI squad. Definitely a better option than :shafiq.
he hasn't in limited overs. In tests he's played enough. Still could do with more games.

T20s he's hardly played anything. Don't think it's a wise decision to blood him in in limited overs first.

Tests, fine.
 
That means better than :umarakmal in other words?

Umar is miles ahead in ODIs and t20 ..:shafiq( average barely 30 and sr under 70) is mediocre in limited over cricket.. and Umar akmal is pakistan's best bat in ODI. Haris is the perfect replacement for :shafiq.
 
he hasn't in limited overs. In tests he's played enough. Still could do with more games.

T20s he's hardly played anything. Don't think it's a wise decision to blood him in in limited overs first.

Tests, fine.

Our domestic kills players more than nurturing them , I would not like to induce him in the team when he is out of form. Take him in when he is at his best. Besides there isn't much A list cricket in pak domestic.
 
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Umar is miles ahead in ODIs and t20 ..:shafiq( average barely 30 and sr under 70) is mediocre in limited over cricket.. and Umar akmal is pakistan's best bat in ODI. Haris is the perfect replacement for :shafiq.

lol ok, if you say so :ahmed
 
Our domestic kills players more than nurturing them , I would not like to induce him in the team when he is out of form. Take him in when he is at his best. Besides there isn't much A list cricket in pak domestic.
disagree, it's still useful to churn the domestic circuits. Makes the batsman more comfortable and able the player to make self improvements.

He'll hit top form again, so I wouldn't worry about that. As I said there's no rush.
 
Our domestic kills players more than nurturing them , I would not like to induce him in the team when he is out of form. Take him in when he is at his best. Besides there isn't much A list cricket in pak domestic.

I agree with this, Haris should be drafted into our next LOI squad. he looks ready for the top level of cricket
 
disagree, it's still useful to churn the domestic circuits. Makes the batsman more comfortable and able the player to make self improvements.

He'll hit top form again, so I wouldn't worry about that. As I said there's no rush.

I would rathar like him to improve in international , and as I said in Pakistan there isn't much A list cricket played and it would not hurt much to play him in t20 at one down. We do not have a suitable one down batsman. 23 already which is as we know is equivalent to 26. I won't wait more as misbah and younis are at the twilight of their career ,you have to prepare a batsman by keeping him in the team and giving a game every now and then.
 
Highly impressed by his tendency to play proper cricketing shots with great timing...despite chasing a stiff target!

Usually all batsmen tend to play across which he mostly did not
 
He looks like a proper batsman, Could be a real find for the side.
 
He played some really classy strokes today, showed glimpses of the great Mohammad Yousuf and Saeed Anwar, but lets not get carried away. He still has a loooooooong way to go. Also WK of the tournament should've gone to Gauhar Ali.
 
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