World Cup 2007 March 12, 2007

Leadership: road to nowhere?

Inzamam needs to captain for his life from the first ball of the match to the last, not in flashes of desperation
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When Inzamam-ul-Haq led out Pakistan in yesterday's opening ceremony he took me by surprise, smiling and waving enthusiastically at the crowd. Inzamam's mood is a vital influence on his team. When it is dark and brooding it can crush the enthusiasm of his charges. Only today, Imran Khan has accused Inzamam of leading from the rear.

Inzamam has a low-key style of leadership, undemonstrative to the point of invisibility. When the game is going Pakistan's way this doesn't matter too much, indeed a captain's real skill is revealed in adversity. Unfortunately, Inzamam too often tends to let the game drift when he should be trying to seize the initiative. Now, nobody wants Inzamam to become the team cheerleader - he's got Younis Khan for that - but he must stamp his desire and will on proceedings. If the captain is lethargic in his approach so will the rest of his team.

Inzamam, of course, is capable of passion and visible engagement but those responses too often arise in extremis. In one-day cricket there isn't much opportunity to pull your team back from the brink. Inzamam needs to captain for his life from the first ball of the match to the last, not in flashes of desperation.

He must also seek advice from his senior players and his coach. Leadership may be lonely but any leader is only as good as the people in his team. There is nothing to be gained from internalising the team's burden and responding in splendid isolation. The best captains are those who are willing to listen to trusted lieutenants and then make a decision that is in their opinion best for the team. Imran Khan may have made a name for himself for leading from the front but he constantly had Javed Miandad in his ear. Ricky Ponting is only half the captain he can be when he doesn't have Shane Warne's wisdom to fall back on.

Who will be Inzamam's wise lieutentant? Younis Khan is a great enthusiast. Mohammad Yousuf is reserved but thoughtful. Shahid Afridi is fire and brimstone. Shoaib Malik is a wise head on slender shoulders. None of them is a Javed or a Warne but in combination these senior players must support their captain and their captain must listen.

This mission is not Inzamam's alone. If it becomes that it will become a road to nowhere. This is a mission that must be owned by all of Pakistan's players and coaching staff. But in sport the only kind of leadership that works is leadership from the front, that unites players behind a clear vision. Inzamam is a great leader and a great thinker when he is at the crease. He has to quickly become a good enough leader the rest of the time as well.

If the warm up matches have proved anything it is that this is an open tournament and despite their crazy preparation Pakistan have a genuine chance of victory. Inzamam has done much to unite these players with his silent authority. But he must now shed any fear of failure, get his head in the game, and lead like a champion. Win or lose, nobody will criticise him for that.

Kamran Abbasi is an editor, writer and broadcaster. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Unity on January 26, 2012, 18:17 GMT

    I'm impreessd by your writing. Are you a professional or just very knowledgeable?

  • Haqnawaz Habib on March 17, 2007, 9:06 GMT

    Inzi .. a question mark? a full stop. an exclamation mark! or a smile :)

    I just saw yesterday match between England and Newzeland. Vaugh captaincey was excellent. He tried everything to break-up the partnership but his bowlers were unable to get a wicket for his captain. To whom you are going to blame? Captain? or Team?

    I think winning a match is a team effort but I also don't say that you can make anybody captain. Captain is important as well and if you look at the current Pakistani team then I think Inzi is a best option. I will not recommend Younis because in my point of view any immature decision can cast you match as well.

    I think Inzi just follow the game plan and move on accordingly. He is not like imran who is on the field with his own game plan. Team has to perform well, players have to contribute and rise above. If Inzi can do well with the bat then that will be great as he used to be match winner!

    but .. one problem .. there is always a hope ..

  • inzamam mohseen on March 17, 2007, 4:33 GMT

    i think ur rite i agree wid everyy wordd

  • RAO NADEEM on March 17, 2007, 0:03 GMT

    Dear kamran Abbasi Please forward/Send this email to Inzmam &Bob&Naseem if you have contact with them. I suggest pakisatn team has Calibre of winning/or at leat competing in this world cup only of Team Management really want to do that.Few players of pakistan have great great potential&moreover Inzmam him self but they have to put themselves into test .I dont know why INZMAM is afraid of testing himself .In first match he had the chance to prove it but he after winning the toss he gave batting to WEST INDES.What was this extremely foolish descion ?.Even W.I did not do well but it discloses to them that Inzmam is afraid &taht was the advantage to them.Other thing if Afridi comes back ,he should open .They should play aggressive &bold cricket not like cowards&rotten cricket.

  • Waz on March 16, 2007, 23:23 GMT

    i must say Kamran u really know hwo to criticise dude! but u really think its worth or our team needs appreciatian and support?all we can do is hope and pra tht PAKISTAN qualifies through super 8 then super 4 then then last finals v/s India!!!! wohooo

  • Muhammad Hussain on March 16, 2007, 12:49 GMT

    The issue of captaincy is vital, Imran is right when he says Inzamam should lead from the front which means at times of crisis he must move up the batting order to stabilise the negativity that sets in. Why Pakistan management have not solved the huge problem of finding two quality opening batsman is beyond me, this has been evident for a long time. The current crop's inability to set a firm foundation to allow the middle order to play their natural game has been a major factor why this team will continue to struggle. The fielding is autrious, probably the worst fielding side in the tournament and yet nothing has been done to sort out this major issue. Ireland and Zimbabwe will run Pakistan very close judging what we have seen so far.

  • daniel on March 16, 2007, 11:29 GMT

    This guy is the only Pakistani writer i enjoy reading. lol Keep it up.

  • Tahir Hashmi on March 13, 2007, 23:34 GMT

    In their opening loss to WI Pakistan once again proved what a group of under achievers they really are. Inzi also once again proved to be a thoughtless captain. Why did he not play Azhar Mahmood on a pitch that looked very green in place of Kaneria? And why did he play Sami in the warm matches only to replace him Rana in this one? I thought Sami was impressive in the match against SA. That just shows that Pakistan really doesn't have a strategy, they would rather just wing it. And why did they not choose Salman Butt for WC, the only genuine opener Pakistan has produced since Saeed Anwar? Are we that desperate that one good innings from Nazir will guarantee him a permanent place as an opener? They had this match in their control, even after letting WI score 58 runs in the last 5 overs and even after losing 3 quick wickets, only if they had played like a team who has confidence in their abilities and who refuse to lose. A team like Australia or SA, who never give in no matter what the circumstances. And that attitude my friends comes directly from an insightful leader who believes in his troops and provides them with that confidence.

    I believe that Pakistan can still go pretty far in this tournament, but they will have to devise a clever plan for each match, play to their strengths and opposition's weaknesses, and go into each match with a mentality that no one can beat them.

  • Paul on March 13, 2007, 22:18 GMT

    Yep agreed with your points Kamran, sadly as has been said, it's all obvious as it has been for ages and old hat by now. Mullah Inzi is one of the world's best batsman, and maybe a good father figure to his players, but tactically on the field, and in the media, he's a very poor captain, nobody can factually dispute that. But you can't blame him, he's doing the best he can and being given a role he doesn't have the skills to perform well. It reflects more badly on the crap job of the PCB of developing leaders, and the lack of laternative options within the team, than Inzi himself.

  • Indian on March 13, 2007, 7:49 GMT

    Behind the huge mass of Inzi is class. Inzi is a legend, as big as Lara or Tendulkar. Let us hope for a class act!

  • Unity on January 26, 2012, 18:17 GMT

    I'm impreessd by your writing. Are you a professional or just very knowledgeable?

  • Haqnawaz Habib on March 17, 2007, 9:06 GMT

    Inzi .. a question mark? a full stop. an exclamation mark! or a smile :)

    I just saw yesterday match between England and Newzeland. Vaugh captaincey was excellent. He tried everything to break-up the partnership but his bowlers were unable to get a wicket for his captain. To whom you are going to blame? Captain? or Team?

    I think winning a match is a team effort but I also don't say that you can make anybody captain. Captain is important as well and if you look at the current Pakistani team then I think Inzi is a best option. I will not recommend Younis because in my point of view any immature decision can cast you match as well.

    I think Inzi just follow the game plan and move on accordingly. He is not like imran who is on the field with his own game plan. Team has to perform well, players have to contribute and rise above. If Inzi can do well with the bat then that will be great as he used to be match winner!

    but .. one problem .. there is always a hope ..

  • inzamam mohseen on March 17, 2007, 4:33 GMT

    i think ur rite i agree wid everyy wordd

  • RAO NADEEM on March 17, 2007, 0:03 GMT

    Dear kamran Abbasi Please forward/Send this email to Inzmam &Bob&Naseem if you have contact with them. I suggest pakisatn team has Calibre of winning/or at leat competing in this world cup only of Team Management really want to do that.Few players of pakistan have great great potential&moreover Inzmam him self but they have to put themselves into test .I dont know why INZMAM is afraid of testing himself .In first match he had the chance to prove it but he after winning the toss he gave batting to WEST INDES.What was this extremely foolish descion ?.Even W.I did not do well but it discloses to them that Inzmam is afraid &taht was the advantage to them.Other thing if Afridi comes back ,he should open .They should play aggressive &bold cricket not like cowards&rotten cricket.

  • Waz on March 16, 2007, 23:23 GMT

    i must say Kamran u really know hwo to criticise dude! but u really think its worth or our team needs appreciatian and support?all we can do is hope and pra tht PAKISTAN qualifies through super 8 then super 4 then then last finals v/s India!!!! wohooo

  • Muhammad Hussain on March 16, 2007, 12:49 GMT

    The issue of captaincy is vital, Imran is right when he says Inzamam should lead from the front which means at times of crisis he must move up the batting order to stabilise the negativity that sets in. Why Pakistan management have not solved the huge problem of finding two quality opening batsman is beyond me, this has been evident for a long time. The current crop's inability to set a firm foundation to allow the middle order to play their natural game has been a major factor why this team will continue to struggle. The fielding is autrious, probably the worst fielding side in the tournament and yet nothing has been done to sort out this major issue. Ireland and Zimbabwe will run Pakistan very close judging what we have seen so far.

  • daniel on March 16, 2007, 11:29 GMT

    This guy is the only Pakistani writer i enjoy reading. lol Keep it up.

  • Tahir Hashmi on March 13, 2007, 23:34 GMT

    In their opening loss to WI Pakistan once again proved what a group of under achievers they really are. Inzi also once again proved to be a thoughtless captain. Why did he not play Azhar Mahmood on a pitch that looked very green in place of Kaneria? And why did he play Sami in the warm matches only to replace him Rana in this one? I thought Sami was impressive in the match against SA. That just shows that Pakistan really doesn't have a strategy, they would rather just wing it. And why did they not choose Salman Butt for WC, the only genuine opener Pakistan has produced since Saeed Anwar? Are we that desperate that one good innings from Nazir will guarantee him a permanent place as an opener? They had this match in their control, even after letting WI score 58 runs in the last 5 overs and even after losing 3 quick wickets, only if they had played like a team who has confidence in their abilities and who refuse to lose. A team like Australia or SA, who never give in no matter what the circumstances. And that attitude my friends comes directly from an insightful leader who believes in his troops and provides them with that confidence.

    I believe that Pakistan can still go pretty far in this tournament, but they will have to devise a clever plan for each match, play to their strengths and opposition's weaknesses, and go into each match with a mentality that no one can beat them.

  • Paul on March 13, 2007, 22:18 GMT

    Yep agreed with your points Kamran, sadly as has been said, it's all obvious as it has been for ages and old hat by now. Mullah Inzi is one of the world's best batsman, and maybe a good father figure to his players, but tactically on the field, and in the media, he's a very poor captain, nobody can factually dispute that. But you can't blame him, he's doing the best he can and being given a role he doesn't have the skills to perform well. It reflects more badly on the crap job of the PCB of developing leaders, and the lack of laternative options within the team, than Inzi himself.

  • Indian on March 13, 2007, 7:49 GMT

    Behind the huge mass of Inzi is class. Inzi is a legend, as big as Lara or Tendulkar. Let us hope for a class act!

  • Robert on March 13, 2007, 5:25 GMT

    Well... once again, how fickle? One month you are praising the great Inzy... the next, how weak a leader he is.

    I go back to what I always say. Inzy is a great batsman but he won't be taking 5 singles an over. He also doesn't command his team. Possibly that is why he is the Pakistan captain. Seems everyone with some sort of conviction as captain does little more than create more internal squables.

    Could it be that Inzy only became captain because of his quiet personality? That way they could limit the possibility of internal fighting?

  • M.TAHIR from springfield,illinois. on March 13, 2007, 4:39 GMT

    Well done Kamran,one of the most honest article after along time.What i fail to understand is that why do some people perceive advise (such as yours or Imran Khan's )negatively.There is no need to have ablog such as this one or any,if all we aregoing to do is give "SHAHBASHEE"to our favourite cricketers.I do believe in praising to beef up the moral of people but we cannot "grow" without being critisized.Furthermore, advise should not be labelled as a negative thought.Much has been said on the how's and the why's of the planning and other aspects of the team, but I think that since most or probably all the onedays are going to be day games,my two cents is that PAKISTAN BETTER NOT BAT FIRST IF THEY WIN THE TOSS.I dont want to go too far but wanna remind them what happened at the Rosebowl against the Windies when our Mr.woolmer and Inzi decided to bat after winning the toss.Also, i a day game even on abatsman's paradise, the only time the ball will do anything for the bowlers is in the early morning hours;as the game progresses,it eases off,and becomes a bowler's graveyard after 2 or 3 pm.I have afeeling the tos will probably decide the fate of the match.PLEASE WIN THE TOSS INZI INSHALLAH YOU WILL WIN THE GAME,IF YOU BOWL FIRST....AND DONT FORGET TO BE AGRESSIVE IN THE FIELD WITH UR FIELD PLACEMENTS.Let Sami unleash his fury,believe me most of these so called worldclass players are afraid of genuine pace and Sami can deliver if u let him go bersrk.... KhudaHafiz

  • MOHAMMED MEERAN on March 13, 2007, 4:24 GMT

    In my point of view Inzamam is the coolest captain in the current world cup. His character is superb. Now during these days of world cup pakistan should be looking for their best eleven. They should not concentrate on any media about the injury or other matters of players. If this pakistani team gets unity then it is very difficult for any team in the world to beat them. They have players like Shahid Afridi who can change the course of game at any point. And once he started to demolish the pace attack then the world class bowlers have to think many times before they bowl. If you see the record in ODI cricket most of the toughest matches pakistan have won. And if they are in final most of the occasion they have won. If you see the record when India & Pakistan played in final of any tournament All the finals pakistan have won. I will pray for this team to get this mega title 2007.

  • Mohsin Malik - San Francisco Bay Area on March 13, 2007, 4:10 GMT

    Unpredictable Wicket - Approach with Caution:

    Lot has been talked about the wicket as being sub-continental in nature. It's a newly laid track and could play differently with a surprise element in store.

    If Pakistan are lucky with the toss of the coin, they would possibly take the field first. However, should they be asked to make first use of the wicket, it would be prudent on the part of the opening pair especially, for Imran Nazir to gauge the nature of the wicket and curb his natural instincts viz a viz aggression in the beginning. I am sure that Bob Woolmer, the true coach would have mentored his opening pair, accordingly to meet this unpredictability factor.

    To avoid unnecessary hiccups from the start, the innings needs to be built on gradually and would prosper, thereon. It would require a concerted team effort and digging in, no favors on offer.

    It is highly unlikely that it would be a belter of a track. In fact, it could play sluggish. Runs would have to be accumulated.

    I for once, do not expect the usual flourish from the openers. Rather, they would be well advised to extend stay and safeguard their wickets.

    After the initial exchanges, there could be some real flip-flops and the situation would be tense as expected.

    To carry the day, team Pakistan needs to approach this opener with a positive frame of mind but take a well carved out and cautious route.

    The bowlers generally, would be able to deliver given the unpredictable nature of the wicket. It's the batting department that needs to hold together under a difficult set of conditions.

    Let's see how it plays out in the middle.

    Good luck to Inzi, the laid back captain or is it that we will see a changed Inzi in the middle i.e. instead of scratching his beard, he would be seen exchanging looks with his teammates on the field and seen in quick huddles between changeovers.

    We may be in for a real surprise.

  • Imran Iqbal on March 13, 2007, 2:55 GMT

    Really pathetic blog. Same issue's been repeated over and over. Seems like you do not know any thing else but blowing your idol Imran's trumpet. If he is really that gr8 why you bother comparing him with so-called mediocre Inzamam. Ain't you confused???? What are you trying to achieve? Imran likes to criticize batsmen captains and supports bowling ones, a specie so rare these days (coz not all of them have thinking brain e.g. Shoib). Leave Inzamam alone and do not forget he is the man on the field which he has proved on so many occasions. Go Pakistan Go (and don't worry about media crap)!

  • Taimur Huk on March 13, 2007, 2:30 GMT

    this is not a time to criticize our captain. one day b4 the world cup, we need to get behind our team and think positive. and INSHALLAH, WE WILL WIN THE CUP!

  • Ali ibn Abu Talib on March 13, 2007, 0:23 GMT

    ‘Whoever wants to be a leader should educate himself before educating others. Before preaching to others he should first practice himself. Whoever educates himself and improves his own morals is superior to the man who tries to teach and train others.’

    This is from Imam Ali ibn Abu Talib, 4th Sunnite Khaliph, 1st Shi’ite Imam, and largely forgotten from the annuls, on a small snippet about leadership, circa 660 ah.

    Oh, and Inzi, please stop offering peace to Manjrekar & Ms Naidoo. Understand the faith, understand your fate.

  • ani on March 12, 2007, 23:00 GMT

    People, I am an Indian supporter. That being said, I grew up at a time when Pakistan was the best team in the world - best simply because no other team could infuse you with the excitement Pakistan did. The purpose of this lengthy introduction is to justify me being here; my point is that I expect Pakistan to do much better than is being said. The pitches in the Carribean resemble those at India, when Pakistan last toured us. Forget the megastars Inzi, Mohd. Yusuf and Yunis Khan who perform under any conditions, in these flat conditions the utility men Afridi, Malik and Mehmood could well be devastating. While Razzak is a sad loss, I personally think Azhar Mehmood's is a welcome comeback. If anything, the bowling looks a worry, given that neither Shoaib nor Asif are playing. In these circumstances, I hope Woolmer plays Kaneria, who I think is a genuine match-winner, his lack of experience notwithstanding. To end, I won't bet on Pakistan to win the cup (India will!), but I don't see them stopping short of a semi-final birth. I wish good luck to the team. And after the world cup, can someone please take Shoaib aside and ask him a few unpleasant questions?

  • wasim saqib on March 12, 2007, 22:36 GMT

    I missed the program last night where Inzi and imran both were present,however Imran although I am a great admirer of him but he has a habbit of taking credit of all his sucesses,by quoting this line "leading from the front" if he is given the command of the current Pakistan team I dont think he will do any better than Inzimam, Imran was a lucky captain,he had Javed Miandad as his Deputy and he had Wasim,Waqar,Aqib in his pace attack (although waqar was injured during WC) his team was still a balanced team,This current team is not balanced at all,the batsmen are not comfortable on hard and bouncy pitches or against quality swing bowling, in the past our bowling always saved us even if our batting failed,and on slow pitches although our batting performs but our bowling fails, thats where we have lost the balance most of the recent loses were suffered bcz key bowlers were not in the team due to injury or something else. As far as wasim is concerned I will bet my money on Inzimam any day, Wasim no doubt the greatest player pakistan ever produced but as far his captaincy is concerned despite commanding the strongest team in Pakistan History his record is even worse than Inzimam,He had integrity issues, He destroyed the careers of Waqar,Aqib and lateef he promoted groupings in the team.He failed to win The WC twice even though he had the strongest team in the world, Lets be fair with Inzimam a team is only as good as its players so stop comparing the current team with the past teams we are missing the services of four fast bowlers Shoaib,Asif,Razzak and shabbir due to injuries or whatever. Nobody can control unforeseen events the drug scandal and shabbirs lack of form after being banned for a year really destroyed the planning and the balance of Pakistan team,No captain,or team can recover from such a loss. So lets be realistic and dont expect too much just support your team,and do not pay attention to all this lead from the front crap Inzimam is not a new comer he is playing cricket for pakistan for over a decade he is well aware of it.I admire him bcz he quickly responds to the right criticism he adjusted his batting order immidately, that was legitt objection everything else is just philosophy.

  • Hameed on March 12, 2007, 22:19 GMT

    Hi The reality is He shouldn't be leading the team in first place. He was a great batsman but he never had natural qualities to be a leader he will never lead from the front and you cann't blame him for that as it is not his fault. The time of this disscussion is meaningless is just a day before the first game. You can plan for the future Younas Khan seem natural successor but I serously doubted he will get the full time captaincy of Pakistan team as he is Pathan. If Younas was any where around the world he would be a first choice caption.

  • Khurram, Paris on March 12, 2007, 21:32 GMT

    Being the most unpredictable side in the world you can expect anything from Pakistan. Let’s hope that they will perform well. Even though they don’t have their front line bowlers, but if the team is united and they have the necessary spirit I don’t see why they can’t make it. In the last world cup we had a very strong team but dint even reach the second stage as apparently there was no team unity.

  • Chaachaa Cricket on March 12, 2007, 21:07 GMT

    Are you all saying that Inzi and whole team needs to comeback, they need to learn how to be a team as well as Inzi needs to learn how manage the team ?

    I feel ashamed with most of the above comments. Come on gents, you need to back the team, it is less than 24 hours before Pak start their 1st match of this WorldCup and you are still pointing fingers here and there. Be generous and back the team up.

    Imagine if a player read these responses in the course of next 48 days !!!

    Cheer up and Backup your team.

    I don't care how far we go into the World Cup. All I want them is to put a fight like Tigers. I know most of us think Imran was a great leader. We don't need to go into that. That is a history and its gone.

    We need to put a fight here and now and with these 15 players we have. We had enough in the last month or so. So I request you to back the team and thats all !!

  • Baqar on March 12, 2007, 20:51 GMT

    Just heard that Pakistan players are banned from giving interviews in english - reason given by P.J Mir is that they get misquoted and Pakistan want to promote urdu for tourism! What a load of rubbish ! Media will often misquote irrespective of the language, promote tourism? presume to urdu speaking people only! The choice of language is entirely upto the individual- PCB has no right to try enforce such a ban - they ar only making fools of themselves by stating such things. Trust PCB to bring mockery on themselves at the start of the WC. How dare anyone even try to put such restrictions individual rights!

  • tirmizi on March 12, 2007, 20:47 GMT

    What an unwanted piece of writing Mr Abbasi! I think you have finished with all the ideas to write about.So much ink has already been spilt on Inzy's captaincy.Do we have an alternative? Are the Doping issues,Selections,Fitness problems,nepotism inzy's faults? He has led from the front on numerous occassions.We have given him a wounded team.We have nothing to loose so why should we depair? Comeon man BACK UP UR TEAM AND STOP THROWING UP YOUR PESSIMISM ALL AROUND. Imran's 92 world cup triumph was probably the BIGGEST TUKKA of the cricket history.What did Australia take to win that unnecessary match without which Pak was out anyway.Was there any role of Imran's captaincy in it? If yes then I would really be his treu follower for ever. The man got lucky and thought that it was all his effort.Can we stop making people into GODS please. Pray for the team and hope for the best. Good luck Pakistan.

  • anser azim on March 12, 2007, 20:40 GMT

    This side is still unpredictable!!. They can go all the way to the finals and more inspite of the loss of SA, MA and AR!!! However having said that there is distant possibility that they can be eliminated in early rounds in the worst scenario. Prayers guys prayers !!!!!!Captaincy is not a factor with the Pakistani side. Concept of TEAM is what matters the most.

  • Imran Quraishi(New Jersey) on March 12, 2007, 20:23 GMT

    First of all looks really matter. They say that first impression is the last impression. Inzamam with that beard of his gives the impression of an old man without any motivation. In order to look sporty and physically fit you have to be clean shaven.Inzamam gives a very negative impression to the oppostite team of a laid back and dull captain who thinks that just by saying "Inshallah "he will win the game. I guess he forgot that God only helps those who help themselves.

  • Suhail on March 12, 2007, 20:20 GMT

    Ban on English..., Off the subject, but the ban on English is ridicules. Pakistan tourism will benefit more if we can communicate with people (and not arrest the SC justices) then not able to speak to media accept through spokesperson. Players are not property of the state and they should be able to speak their mind. Good Luck team!!

  • A Mukri on March 12, 2007, 20:03 GMT

    The time is now for Inzi and his men. There will be not another chance and this alone should propel Inzamam and Pakistan to play attacking, no holds barred cricket.

  • rehan on March 12, 2007, 20:01 GMT

    Leadership is a quality valued highly over all other ones. YOu correctly pointed out though that no leader can carry the burden without a wingman. Imran Khan led from the front, while the whily Miandad worked out the strategies. However much we want to "hope" that Younis Khan fits the bill, we must face reality. Problem is , barring the unlikely emergence of a new superstar (not Shoaib Akhtar kind) in Pakistan, the future of leadership and support-man, looks more dim post- Inzamam era. One consolation for all of us to look forward to is, that at least in this tournament we cant get kicked out of the first round like we did in the previous one. Still keeping fingers crossed, on paper we hd no chance in the India tour but instead we witnessed different Inzi and a fighting team. Lets hope a similar miracle happens.

  • Miten on March 12, 2007, 19:37 GMT

    Kamran, lets be honest....things dont change at this stage of the game. Every player is going to play according to his tendencies and this includes the captain as well. Inzi has been chosen as captain and he will do what he does best, you will see no more drastic changes...the guests are waiting for dinner and you aren't going to try a new recipe...not now anyways. Lets just hope Pakistan have their best ingredients and they all bring out their flavours otherwise feel free to switch sides and join the Indian bandwagon.

  • Amyn Habib on March 12, 2007, 19:33 GMT

    Unlike many in this forum, I like Inzi’s style. I don’t think that you have to hysterically jump up and down on the slightest provocation to inspire your team. I like his calm. On the other hand, if you are too laid back this can certainly be perceived as apathy or even as a state of stupor. Of course, the two main qualities of a good captain are strategic thinking and an ability to motivate and lead. And we are looking to him to demonstrate these qualities.

  • Imran Mohammed on March 12, 2007, 19:28 GMT

    I agree with Kamran. One-day cricket does not offer any time to "take it easy" and have a break from the action. Inzamam must be alert and assertive at all times, as the influence he has over the team is so crucial to their self-belief. Let us hope he can once again rise to the challenge, lead from the front and above all be the hero he was in 1992.

  • Syed Naumanuddin Hassan on March 12, 2007, 19:28 GMT

    Pakistan can do well if and only if the openers take some responsibility and put a price tag on themselves. In 1992, Aamir Sohail was the second highest runs scorer. We can all pray that the history repeats itself!

  • Athar Jilani (San Jose, California) on March 12, 2007, 19:15 GMT

    Inzi, U the Man!

    Destiny has already been written for you and Paksitan. If the courage and will is there, future can be changed. I hope and pray that your future is bright and filled with success. May Allah's help be with Pakistani team all the time. Let's bring that trophy back home.

    Please Note: I will still love my country and team irrespective of the outcome of this world cup or any other tournament. Pakistan zindabad.

  • Imran Akhtar on March 12, 2007, 19:15 GMT

    I have faith that Inzimam will rise to the challange of leadership of his side, and will lead from the front, infact he always has led from the front when batting. His leadership has united a bunch of very firey characters ( younis, shahid, Shoib, ), it is Pakistans Unity as a team that is its best chance to win this word cup, and together they can lift the cup. I do not aggree for those who say that Inzimam has not lead from the front, just look at hs battting average before he was captain, and after he became the captain. Yes it is true that Pakistan did badly at South Africa and could have done better in England, but then which sub continental team has done well in South Africa, as a matter of fact which Pakistan team in the past has done well there ? or in Austalia, so why nail down only Inzimam. To my understanding , it is also un fair to blame Pakistan or even India for doing so badly outside their home country, why do we not look at Englands, South Africa's and New zelands record record on subcontinent pitches ?, it is only Autralia who has done well all over the world ! Abyways lets hope that Pakistan can play good competetive cricket in this world cup, and if luck be with us, we will Inshalllah win.

  • Salman on March 12, 2007, 19:00 GMT

    I think this is the time we should be encouraging our team and the captain. Whatever weaknesses he may have, he is a great leader. He has united the team and brought it back on the cricket map as one of the very formidable teams. Lets hope he leads from rear and from front and bring back the cup to Pakistan.. he can do it, and we are all with him, behind him, and supporting him in all his decisions!!!

  • AR on March 12, 2007, 18:48 GMT

    Old news buddy, we have been talking about this aspect for 2 years now, we are all resigned to the fact Inzamam is a bit lazy in this respect. If you are trying to remind him or rebut Imran and Waqars recent comments, it still doesn't serve a purpose. All this blog entry is gonna do is make every rehash their opinions over and over and over again. This is so irrelelvent now because 1) Inzamam is only captaincy option and there is no opportunity for change, there was such an opportunity 1 year back, but that subsided. and B) old dogs don't learn new tricks.

  • Taimur Huk on March 12, 2007, 18:47 GMT

    yea, i agree with you here. inzaman needs to become an active captian who united his team behind a common goal, and that goal is to win the WC. this will most likely be his last act, so i hope he shows that he is hungry to win the world cup and leave his career on a good note. GO PAKISTAN! PAKISTANIS AROUND THE WORLD ARE BEHIND YOU AND PRAYING FOR YOUR SUCCESS! GO BRING HOME THE CUP!!!!

  • khann on March 12, 2007, 18:41 GMT

    Well Late but not too late......lets pray Inzamam can grabe somethin otta here.

  • Sal - Hong Kong on March 12, 2007, 18:29 GMT

    Kamran, nice and timely dose. I hope Inzi reads it before the first game tomorrow. I agree he MUST lead from the front and should bat at # 4. In field, we need to hear him roar thru the stumps microphone!

  • Faizan on March 12, 2007, 18:28 GMT

    I totally agree with all that you have written, but brother kamran unfortunately Inzimam is some one else we've been expecting many changes in his style of leadership ever since he became a captain but the only which can be noticed in him is his growing beard. Inzimam is great at what he does and that is batting, captaincy does not match his personality, a good example of that is Tendulkar. Inzimam lacks the vision that Miandad, Imran and Ponting have in common, they are not scared to take chances, where as Inzi does have the ability to make changes in his teams or in his plans, since he bacame captain he made best 11 based on favoritism. There's no justification for selecting the players they have in this team except a few, we would've been better off with Anwer Ali than sami or rana, didnt Australia take a chance on shaun tait. Anyway Inzimam's captaincy will be blunder as always, then like after every WC we'll have PCB clear out. I hate to sound so negative, but there no positives either. Salam

  • wasim saqib on March 12, 2007, 18:28 GMT

    Another article from a cricinfo writer which lacks substance and is self contradictory and based on trivial judgements. A lot has been said about Inzi's captaincy already,people have been over critical at times,He has already addressed the problem of not batting at a higher order, maybe he was not too confident about his form at that time or may be he thought younis and yousaf were in better form than him so he wanted to give them a chance,but this problem has been addressed. The rest of the criticism is only frustration vented out by some die hard Pakistan fans who want to win in every match, as far as criticism from media and Explayers and commentators from other nations is concerned they always critcise him for the sake of criticism. He is quite often branded as lazy I dont know what people mean by that as his batting record speaks otherwise,a lazy person cannot be such a high class player,as far his captaincy is concerned he is the third most successful captain for Pakistan in Test matches a head of wasim Akram and in ODIS ahead of Javaid miandad,But if we compare the teams under his command and Other Captains like Imran,Wasim, and javaid his team is the weakest and in recent past due to several shoaib Incidents and injuries to other players it has been very rare to see a full Pakistan side playing a match,the media deliberately overlooks that fact,he is the most underrated captain and player of his time,as far as taking advice from the deputies is concerned it seems that younis Khan complained to Kamran Abbassi directly otherwise I dont see how somebody can know that advice from the senior players is being disregarded,another thing for which he has never been given any credit is that he completely eliminated Groupings in the team he united the team and commands respect from his players no other Pakistan captain other than Imran could accomplish that. He is also critcised for being religious and promoting the faith in the team,I can see the western countries having problem with this Idea bcz of their Islamophobia but why Pakistanis are doing that is beyond my comprehension,I think its just plain ignorance,Its his personal matter and if he can use his faith to glue the team theres nothing wrong with that,lets condemn such stupid and ignorant remarks unanimously and show zero tolerance on such comments. Its not a matter of being religious its a matter of self pride.These western countries dont let anybody make fun of gays in their sports team but hey if somebody promotes there faith its not acceptable, Religion is not going to improve cricketing skills agreed but on the spirtual side it can do the same what other teams try to get from Yoga and other forms of meditations or inspirations. He was wrongly criticised for oval fiasco,it was only bcz of his courage that Darrell Hair is no longer umpiring in the world cricket.He looks a dull and dormant captain but his actions are otherwise,The only thing he lacks in his captaincy is that while feilding he is not a great tactician like Javed miandad his handling of his bowlers and field placement is not at Par with the likes of Fleming,Ponting and Dravid but he has improved a lot.And also he needs to be a little more aggressive in the field. I cant say this team will go all the way but I agree with Kamran that this tournament is wide open and all the players will have to deliver if they want to win it all.

  • Khurram Shehzad ,Montreal, Canada on March 12, 2007, 18:21 GMT

    Not all leaders are the same. Inzamam is a great leader but he rarely shows his emotions. However i don't agree with the idea of seeking advice from the coach when it comes to leadership. The man declared recently that he thinks South Africa will take it. It is not about winning or losing but I think he shouldn't have said that.

    Simply because most people have discounted Pak as serious contenders does NOT mean this team is nothing but a bunch of under achievers. They have the talent. They have the heart to fight and being the underdogs they now have a reason to prove everyone wrong.

    Good Luck team Pakistan. Let the games begin!

  • utpal jha on March 12, 2007, 18:20 GMT

    well binding the team is in itself a great act of captaincy and that to in pakistan where everything is uncertain and for that i really admire inzammam.kamran u mentioned about his reserved and silent attitude and i belief he is the way he is and cant change.

    recently his calm and slow attitude has come under lot of criticism but i think inzammams that quality has a calming and positive effects on player at pressure situation so i dont think we should criricize him for that.

    he certainly does not have do or die attitude like imram khan had but that doesnt mean he is bad captain. he has his weakness because thats not his nature and we cant complain about that.

    for me inzammam was and is a captain at the time transition phase for pakistan.all he can do for now limit the disaater and not let the team break but now the captaincy for pakistan should go to another level where captain has to take control over everything i.e selections and lead the team as a hungry tiger for success and pakistan is yet to find that captain and may be before being captain yunis has to understand what pakistani cricket exactly wants from him. thank you utpal nepal

  • Jim C. on March 12, 2007, 18:16 GMT

    This is a crap article Dr. Kamran !!!! Even in the the 1992 world cup that Pakistan won, I Don't recall Imran asking for ideas from Minadad. They only seemed to acknowledge each other when they recived the trophy. Yonus was given a chance recently, when Inzy was out. What did he do. ZERO I am a GREAT fan of Imran, but I don't like all these comments he keeps making. IMRAN should either get FULLY involved in Pakistan cricket or SHUT UP. He can't be a politian making occassional remarks about Pakistan cricket. By the way, I am VERY HAPPY Shoabib Akhtar is out. I have met him in many countries. ALWAYS DRUNK !!! He is probably to blame for the th#e problems with our fujture fast bowler - ASIF'

    Hope for the BEST.

    Thanks & Regards,\

  • M. Saqib on March 12, 2007, 18:14 GMT

    Mr. Abbasi... "Win or lose, nobody will criticize him for that." Of what Pakistan are you talking about? In Pakistan you win = Excellent even if you are a moron but if you lose you are an untouchable...

    In my opinion Inzimam's method of captaining is the best thing that has happened to Pakistan cricket in a long time. Just look at how everyone wanted to be Imran (the dictator) after 92 and what followed was some of the worst time for Pakistan cricket despite having supper heroes in the team. Now we don't have as many big names but we also don't have people who want to be the shining star who knows all(Imran)... so in conclusion we have finally come out of the chaos Imran left behind when he left.. This is a more professional team than we have had in the past so please stop moaning about bringing back the Imran type of dictatorship policy.....

  • Euceph Ahmed on March 12, 2007, 18:13 GMT

    Kamran... I must admit that I'm kinda growing weary of all your pandering to Imran Khan and this much cliched "lead-from-the-front" crap. This line is so utterly used up that you can't even make a shaggy dog out of it. I think it's about time you and the rest of this nation get over Imran Khan's colonial caboodle and think a little out of the box. There's more to Pakistan cricket than Imran Khan. There's more to winning strategies than that severely beat-up "lead-from-the-front" military mentality.

    It's also a very incorrect time to write such an article. Amazingly enough, someone like you couldn't figure out that this slot was the only available one that should have been dedicated to total and complete support for the captain and his team. We've picked on him enough in the past, and we'll be criticizing him aplenty when the team fails. This was the only opportunity to show him some support. It would really have been nice at this crirtical juncture if we all sent him a message of total and complete support come what may. I thought your article was totally uncalled for, thoughtless, and displayed journalistic bankruptcy on your own part.

  • Abu Bakar on March 12, 2007, 18:07 GMT

    I totally agree...Inzi needs to lead from the front. He already commands the respect of every player in the team, it is time he utilized that power and break out from hi shell as it is now or never

  • Mustafa Moiz on March 12, 2007, 18:05 GMT

    Inzamam should never have been handed captaincy and he can't help Pakistan here. Twice Pakistan have reached the World Cup finals but it was under Imran Khan and Wasim Akram. If Abdul Razzaq was playing I would say that, between Malik, Younis Khan and Razzaq, there was enough decent captaincy. Even if Pakistan win it will be without Inzamam's captaincy because I rarely see him taking any role on the field.

  • imran on March 12, 2007, 17:54 GMT

    hi to everybody all of you are critisizing inzi for not being a great captain like imran khan but inzi has no waqar wasim javed in his team .instead he got a lot of young players and still he has managed to make it a quite good team.he has the courage to take his team off the ground in englad.(he was quite right to do so)and how many times he has saved pakistan by playing a captains innings and he was the key figure to help pakistan becoming the champions. you will see that pakistan is going to rock and then everybody critsizing inzi will be praising him like no one els. inzamam bhai you were a cornered tiger once and you brought the cup home.just make ytour team mates know what it is like being a cornered tiger and they wiil inshallah perform like you did and inshallah victory will be ours. well dont waste your time on afridi .woh to jungle ka shair hai kuch bhi ker sakta hai.just tell him how to do it.

  • Abdul Waheed - USA on March 12, 2007, 17:53 GMT

    “Inzamam needs to captain for his life from the first ball of the match to the last, not in flashes of desperation.”

    I think above is the punch line from your blog. The only thing I would like to add is, Inzamam needs to Captain for his life from the FIRST BALL of the game against the West Indies and keep it up with same purpose, fire and passion until the LAST BALL for Pakistan in this Tournament. Hopefully, with the last ball, World Cup comes to Pakistan way. If it does not, still he and his BOYS can have the satisfaction that whole PAKISTAN followed and cheered the TEAM with their LIFE.

    GO INZI, GO WOOLMER, AND GO EVERY MEMBER OF PAK TEAM. GO ALL THE WAY.

  • Ali Sohail on March 12, 2007, 17:51 GMT

    agreed! win or lose! the fight, the will, the competitive spirit and the seldom seen positive attributes is what we, as a 16million cricket following nation expect, deserve and are worthy of getting. If out of 5 million eligible sporting community of sportsmen(cricketers at whatever leve) we cannot draw out 15 men with those basic skills, then we dont deserve to be a called a nation with abundant cricketting talent. On those lines, it is 'Newzealand', who out of a population of 5 million have around 50 thousand men eligible for the game, and have drawn out a team who can beat any team on any given day! now thats wat i called abundance of talent! It is commendable given that cricket is a secondary sport in that country!

  • Asmatullah on March 12, 2007, 17:48 GMT

    I think Inzi is too easy a target for criticism because of his relaxed approach. However when we had the head cheerleader leading the team for the Champion's Trophy, we hardly played any better than usual. The key to Inzi's captaincy is his form; when he is playing well the team gain confidence from his laid back approach. So my worry is that as he has not been in the greatest form recently the team may not draw as much confidence out of him as they have done previously.

    I think his first few innings will be key for setting the tone.

  • Asif Khan on March 12, 2007, 17:38 GMT

    Mr. Abbasi,

    I always see inzi as leader with great quality of patience. He has won matches for pakistan and ofcousre lost few that goes hand in hand ina any game. Our country culture clearly reflect that no one has patience when it is needed the most and inzi does posses all of the coutries patience in him. There is always positive and negative side in each person, we at this moment of time should talk about the positive side and let them feel good about it and gel as a winning team. Presently pandit has almost not considering a serious contendor for the cup, and we will pounce from behind and will insha-Allah comeout winner. Good luck to Pakistan team

    regards

  • Fauji on March 12, 2007, 17:31 GMT

    Big Inzi has been much criticized recently by cricket pundits on various media outlets for his laid back captaincy approach. A captain moulds his team in his own image and where Imran was an icon of principles, Wasim a fiery aggressor, Inzi is the genial mullah who is at ease with that posture. Given his particular captaincy penchant, I believe it is a fruitless exercise to compare him with Imran or Wasim and judge him in their mirrors. His unique captaincy style has united the team and put forth Pakistan as one of the major contenders for the cup only four years after major players retired from the side. The only captain who was able to rebuild a side as quick was Allan Border so if Inzi compares favourably with him result wise, he must be doing something right

  • shyam on March 12, 2007, 17:29 GMT

    More analysis, less sentimental rhetoric please.

  • Swaziboy on March 12, 2007, 17:17 GMT

    Look no further than Azhar Mahmood... this guy always dreamed of being captain and always has some sort of input if he can hold his place in the team

  • Khuram Ahmad on March 12, 2007, 17:13 GMT

    The best way inzamam could lead this fang-less Pakistani cricket team in the worldcup is to lead from the front. Period. I dont personally support the idea of comparing Inzamam and Imran as both of them are in possession of an entirely different personalities. I accept the fact that at times inzamam let the game drift away but we should also keep in mind that inzamam hasnt really done that bad (xcept the south african series) during his tenure. We should stop bashing Inzamam and Woolmer for all the problems faced by our team and should lend them our support. I guess kaneria can play a very important role in this worldcup and i`ve got this feeling that he might be our trump card come the important matches. Pakistan is best when it under pressure to perform..and by God!! inzamam should lead by example..for his own sake..for the sake of 16 crore DIE-HARD pakis back home..Younis Khan also has a very important job..he basically has to fill in all the gaps ( and there are many) which are left unattended by Inzi..Younis should ACT and FEEL as the VICE-CAPTAIN of our team and his performances should reflect that as well...hmmmmm..i guess we are in for a HEART-ATTACK worldcup folks..lets fasten our seatbelts and enjoy this game..which is indeed a great one.

  • concerned pakistani on March 12, 2007, 17:02 GMT

    Inzi is no doubt a legend and the best batsmen in the world with experience, but when choosing a captain, PCB should have done an IQ test before.

  • Mansoor Hazir on March 12, 2007, 16:55 GMT

    My friend its all very well for us to talk and talk and talk, but this again is a road leading to nowhere. You think any of the senior players bother what we write or are capable of reading and taking heed. From what I have read now, players will now speak in press conferences and interviews in Urdu. Although realistic, but far removed from the pattern set in the last many many years. I think Kamran you have to start writing you comments in Urdu if we have a chance of getting anywhere.

    As to Inzamam, the lesser said the better. We are stuck with him and therefore are at his mercy for now. The people who selected him as Captain should have brought about a change a year ago with Mohammad Yousuf taking over and then groomed. Now there is only Dua as there is no time for Dawa.

  • Asad Bangash, Toronto on March 12, 2007, 16:45 GMT

    Can u stop criticizing Pakistani Team and Captain for few days? Isnt there anything positive u can write about our team ?Don't worry people would still come to ur blogs even if u dont write negative stuff. Our Team needs our morale support ,PAKISTAN ZINDABAD and INSHALLAH we will Win the WC 07 ' !

  • nasir azeem on March 12, 2007, 16:38 GMT

    to me also inzi is not looking like a leader, from the begening of his international cricket in early 90s upto now he is considered to be a cool minded reather then an attacking person on the field or maybe he looks like due to his lazy body language on the field(records shows that he world record holder of wicket looser during running between wickets, a slip fielder where he has no need to run much etc.) after the worldcup afridi or shoaib malik could be the captain of pakistan who are active on the field as well as having agressive approach.

  • Shaan on March 12, 2007, 16:37 GMT

    I think Inzaman knows his days are almost over. He has lost his passion towards cricket. Upon looking at his current photos (resembles a mullah) he seems like more interested in spreading Islam (Tableeghi Jammat) than captaining Pakistan. He was accused lately of forcing his team-mates to perform namaz 5 times a day. What a tragedy! it is a grave danger if players like him mixes sports with religion. It is a recipe for disaster. Saeed Anwar, Saqlain Mustaq, and Mustaq Ahmad all have ended their career pre-maturily by involing too much with religion. A lesson needs to be learned.

  • Imran on March 12, 2007, 16:35 GMT

    In my opinion Inzi has been inconsistent as a captain. He began as the one all the youngsters looked up to, but now everyone has recieved fame and they all think they are giants except yousuf ofcourse. While inzi is not quite the player he was two years ago and yousuf has taken his place not only at number 4 but also as the premier batsman. Even younis has surpassed Inzi. Inzi is only captain for the sake of unity and stability in the team. If the captain had to be changed it would have had to be when Pakistan last came to the caribbean. You are right by saying he should lead from the front, in my opinion he should open the innings. simple reasons, he is a far better slogger than anyone in the team ; yousuf, younis, kamran, or afridi. The field is going to be in for 20 overs and he can hit over the field. Another reason, Inzi plays fast bowler as good as anyone in the world and better than the rest of our batsmen. He cant bat at number 3 or 4 because if we lose an early wicket he is a bad starter and we dont want to lose two wickets in quick succession and especially the one of Inzi. You can argue the point that we can lose Inzi's wicket first, but then we stil have our wall in younis and our innings builder yousuf. Last reason, if Inzi is still the best batsman in ODI's for Pakistan, which i think he is, then we need to give our best batsman the maximum amount of overs. Obviously this means Malik and hafeez have to shoulder a lot of responsibility at 5 and 6. Then we can have kamran, afridi, and mahmood to slog. If inzi wants to lead from the front its not just about being followed by ten guys that walk out from pavillion, giving instructions and changing bowlers/field, its also about leading by example and from the front. Remember Imran began as a bowler that could bat but the end of his career he was batting at number 4 to take responsibility and still was the first change bowler. Inzi can't deliver motivational talks like imran could but at least he could lead by example like Imran did. Inzi step up and act like a leader. As for the next captain, for the sake of stability it has to be Younis and his deputy should be Malik.

  • Umer Farooq on March 12, 2007, 16:32 GMT

    Kamran, I agree with you for the most part that Inzamam has to exude consistent leadership skills.

    But it must be realized that Inzamam is best known for his tact and latent leadership, which is quite contradictory to what most people expect from him (you used the phrase "visible engagement").

    Some people are not effective communicators, and when they try to express their leadership style explicitly, it backfires. In any case, this world cup will be a litmus test for Inzamam and his team, and I wish them the best of fortunes.

  • Ithsham Yousaf on March 12, 2007, 16:13 GMT

    good article Kamran, i can't believe people are writing off Pakistan already, i was listening to a talk show the other day and they said Pak has no chance. I think we have enough energy and fire power to inshallah win this tournament, Inzi will be fine, he has performed at big events before and he will inshallah continue to do so here..LETS GO PAK!

  • Ben on March 12, 2007, 16:02 GMT

    Well, Clive Lloyd was about as lethargic and look at what he achieved.

    Like Lloyd, he is more a father-figure than a firebrand in the Imran mould.

    One cannot expect him to be something that he's not. And of course, an Imran does not often come along.

    Let's manage our expectations

    Inzi is Inzi, one cannot expect him to be someone else.

  • TARIQ VAID on March 12, 2007, 15:41 GMT

    Well, I completely agree with you Kamran; Inzi is certainly very lethargic, a lazy character. Whenever he leads the field on the team, it seems that he is someone from the spectators just coming to watch the game and get his players morales thrashed to all parts of the ground.

    He should be recieving and accepting advices from senior players like Younus, Afridi n Malik..certainly not Yousuf(with no offence to him, hez certainly a gr8 player but not a thinking captain). Pakistan should have a go from the beginning trying hard to nail down their opponents be it in batting, bowling or fielding (thts a hopeless senario except the likes of Sami, Nazir, Afridi n Malik).

    I wish the Team Pakistan all the very best...the entire nation is rallying their support behind you...YOU HIT or I HIT...go with tht attitude...

  • Syed Ahsan Ali on March 12, 2007, 15:41 GMT

    Spot on. He is not as bad as he seems. Sack full of runs will do him lot of good.Come on Inzi, it will not get bigger than this. Religiosity helped you immensely in the past and it will do it all over again. Good things happened to good people and you are really a good man. Good luck.

  • Rizwan Zuberi on March 12, 2007, 15:39 GMT

    very thoughtfull Mr.Kamran indeed.

    i believe one shud listen 2 all, take what is usefull and discard what is useless.

    first the pakistani players(all) should learn this and then have you on their list of people they listen to very carefully.

    i just hope there are a few players in the side, who are using a computer in their hotel and reading your articles carefully.

  • Razi on March 12, 2007, 15:39 GMT

    Inzi is not the best of captains. I agree with that without question. However I have to disagree with everybody that Younis Khan is the heir apparent. I remember a few games where the then Yousuf Yohanna captained Pakistan. The level of leadership on the field was incredible, stark contrast with Inzi. He was astute, decisive and very clinical. Better than any I've seen, including Imran Khan. I've also seen Younis Khan captain this side. His captaincy was more cheerleading than decision making, much like Moin Khan. So lets give this man the helm, he will bring much laurels to the team, I'm sure of it.

  • guymed on March 12, 2007, 15:34 GMT

    He may not have the exuberance for a captin,But I think he is well respected among his team members and he has got the total control. This is the weakest team since Imran Khan time but he has produced some good results so far. I think he has done better than Javed, Rashid, Wasim and waqar in terms of Leadership. I have no doubts that Pakistan are the second best team in the WC after Australia. Good luck ...Pakistan

  • Jamal Khan on March 12, 2007, 15:32 GMT

    I think Inzi is a very good person and I love him for not being hyper. He is a humble person and that leads to the fact that if you are humble and respect other team members, it forces others to do anything to accomplish the dreams of their leader. This is also a style of leadership. The only thing needs to be done is to translate his desire to win into a plan. Players should know what he wants and how he wants. Once it is clear to everybody, I am sure Pakistani Players will do everything to realize his dream. I know from my personal experiences, when I was pushed hard do something by an unfriendly boss, I did not perform well. But when a boss was respectful and took care of me and was not pushy but just communicated well enough about his goals, I burnt mid-night candles for him out of respect. WE WILL INSHALLAH WIN INSPITE OF ALL THE BIG HURDLES. PAKISTAN ZINDABAD.

  • Ali Asim on March 12, 2007, 15:31 GMT

    Cool as a cucumber is what they often call him. There is no doubt that he had a great run, but recently his leadership has fallen miles deep into hell. A few months back everything seemed so perfect, almost too good to be true. The combination of him and Bob, player following, team trust and bonding, performance, consistency you name it they had it. But call it a streak of bad luck or curse of the damned that I still can't believe how quickly the whole scenario changed. Can you believe that, a few months ago, this same team was tipped to be a front contender for the big event? I think it was somewhere between Mr. Sheheryar's departure, Younis's crazy burst at captaincy snub, Oval fiasco, S&M doping scandal and some more that we lost all we had. Now call it bad luck or maybe a typical Pakistani way of messing everything up while you know all is well. But Kamran, I still want to be optimistic. I still have a strong heart that begs me to hold on and give em another chance to prove us wrong. Lets give em one more HURRAH and see if they can rise to the occassion and take a proud bow. I'm all up for the green bandwagon, are you?

  • BAJWA on March 12, 2007, 15:19 GMT

    Yeah Kamran...I totally agree with your suggestions, arguments etc. Let us now hope that whole PAK team (especially Inzamam) will perform well....And everybody knows that if PAK works as a unit then there is nobody in the world who can stop them...

    Good Luck to our PAKISTANI CHEETAH`S...InshaALLAH World Cup 2007 humara hai...

  • Ehsan ur-Rehman Khan Chattar Of Mirpur AK on March 12, 2007, 15:15 GMT

    A leader has certain characteristics that make him or her successful. Inzi might not have all those but he certainly has quite few, being able to unite the team is one of them. One of the most important characteristics is to be able to lead by example and he has done that on a number of occasions. It makes all the difference in the world if your leader believes in the mission and I am sure Inzi is one of the few in the whole cricketing world who believes that they are still the top contenders for the cup. The last win against S. Africa has been downplayed by the most but I think this definitely shows the competitive capability and high morale of the team. S. Africans on the other hand were demoralized so much that they started blaming the pitch saying it was the story of two different pitches on the same day. I am afraid the label of being “chokers” is fitting one for them. Deep inside everybody knows what this win means. Pakistan has started the mission in a grand fashion and thats why Inzi was so cheerful in the opening ceremony.

  • Razi Ahmed on March 12, 2007, 15:10 GMT

    We should not blame Inzi for his poor leadership, he is a product of our system. We have learned that making money by any means is the key criteria of success. In a power driven and protocol driven society we have seen leaders making adjustment as per their rates. Looking ahead and play positive cricket should be our goal for next month and half. we have to tell our players that they have to win this tournament just for the sake of people of Pakistan. We dont have anything significant to cherish about but wining a World Cup will be a good starting point.

  • MA on March 12, 2007, 14:54 GMT

    Inzamam's biggest achievement in instilling a sense of unity in the team and having the entire team respect him. This is very rare in Pakistan cricket and arguable more valuable for this cricket team than strategic leadership. Inzamam has Woolmer on the strategy.

  • syed aziz ahmed on March 12, 2007, 14:52 GMT

    This world cup will be renmembered for Inzimam's performance. Win or lose he will perform to his best ability. We all know that when he performs Pakistan wins. Inzimam along with Ricky Ponting, Brian Lara, Dravid and Michael Waughan are the leading batsmen of this cup and all of them are captains of their respective teams. But no one has the ability to perform under presure Inzimam can single-handedly cruise the team to victory if he is chasing runs. It is possible that test match dependable player Younus Khan will let him down. Younus has never scored runs when chasing a target or in the 2nd inning of a test. He cannot handle pressure. I sincerely hope that I am proved wrong. Yousuf and Shoaib Malik can be depended but Shahid Afridi is a gamble, but if he scores, in his natural style, twice in 10 inings Pakistan will be home. Pakistan will greatly miss Abdul Razzak who was a great down the order batsman chasing runs and delivering when he is needed most.

  • Md. Hasanuzzaman on March 12, 2007, 14:52 GMT

    Yes, Inzamam is less calculative. When you have to defend a total of around 150 on a pitch that provides not much help to bowlers, you should not take second and/or third power play. You need to destroy opposition in 40 overs. Inzamam did it twice last year (once against each of England and South Africa). You should attack with close fielders but taking power play at early stages (unless oponents do not lose too many wickets at very early stage)means you lose some option like setting semi attacking field or placing more than two fielders outside the circle (you can not defend boundary easily).

    Younis Khan is not a good leader either as he is super optimistic (living in fictious world). Actually, Pak team does not have any cricketer who is capable of good captain. I do not know their educational background, but it seems they do not have good education. PCB needs to educate their players (both cricketing and normal/soacial).

    Although Pakistan beat SA easily in the warm-up match they are possibly far below in strength from the contenders for the title.

  • Aafat from Toronto on March 12, 2007, 14:41 GMT

    Well Said Kamran. The true leadership is seen on the field, and Inzimam's body language in the field does not create a pretty picture. he is an excellent world class batsman, and he should remain that. I fail to understand, why does Pakistan have to have a leader who is the most senior member, leadership does not come with seniority, it is a natural talent. Look at Graeme Smith, Rahuk Dravid, Ricky Ponting, etc etc, they are not all seniors when they became captain. PCB shoul shed this attitude and make a leader who has true leadership qualities.

    Anyhow my 2 cents,,,

    GO PAKISTAN GO

  • vijay on March 12, 2007, 14:32 GMT

    inzamam is a good leader and i think we should let him captain the team his way

  • Ali Imran from AlKhobar, Saudi Arabia on March 12, 2007, 14:31 GMT

    I couldn't have agreed more with you Kamran. Pakistan got the talent but what lacking is a leader who can lead from the front.

    Inzi with his mind-boggling captaincy has lost many matches. Right decision at right time does matter a lot and for that a captain should have the right head on his shoulder but Alas, Inzi seems to lack that. And to be honest I don't expect too much from Inzi, he will just go through motions without any tactics and strategy.

    In the end, I have observed that many times Inzi avoids coming to bat early if ball is moving around and now that is really a negative mindset and will effect the whole team.

  • Faizaan on March 12, 2007, 14:31 GMT

    Nice one Mr. Abbasi cant wait. Key matches against Australia, Sri Lanka and India will be key. Well need to win at least 2 out 3 of those matches inshallah it will happen.

  • Saiful Ansari, Leesburg VA, USA on March 12, 2007, 14:30 GMT

    Inzy needs to lead from front.

    Kamran your views bear striking resemblance to too many of us who know Inzy is a great player. On the batting crease he has many times planned tactics and sound strategy to bring surprising victories to Pakistan. We all know his capability and wish he can lead this Pakistan squad to lift the World Cup 2007, as a high point of his career which is sadly coming to an end.

    Inzy is usually without any emotions and is not able to fire up his boys. This hurts the chances of the team especially in adverse situations. If Inzy can show some passion on the field; consult his coach and senior players to devise a winning plan; modify the plan according to the situation; change his body language; constantly speak to his bowlers; command respect of his players and lift their spirits, his team will undergo a marvelous transformation and will be hard to beat. By leading from the front, Inzy can galvanize his boys to work on their game and on the field achieve spectacular results.

    Inzy is a senior player, a veteran campaigner, a great player in the class of Lara, Tendulkar and Ponting. If he can win the Wold Cup, it will be another feather in his cap of numerous trophies and Inzy will be revered like Imran Khan by the Pakistani fans or history will judge him as a laid back captain whose achievements were quite ordinary.

  • Brian in Toronto on March 12, 2007, 14:27 GMT

    Hello Pakistani cricket fans, Kamran, I must say, you have produced another interesting piece. I would agree with you on some points regarding Inzi's leadership qualities, but you will recall that even though he appears laid back, he was very involved in the India-Pak series in India a couple of years ago that he even got banned for excessive appealing. So I think from that series, you can see that he does possess aggressive qualities that also inspires his teammates. Yesterday, at the opening ceremonies, I was quite surprised to see him waving and smiling at the audiences and cameras, whereas the other captains seemed dazed and shy by the parades. (By the way wouldn't you agree that it was quite a show put on by the West Indians ?). I think the pressure is off the Pak team as nobody is expecting much from this depleted team. I agree with you that he should consult with the senior players on their thoughts during the match so that they get more involved as well. He should also consult with all the bowlers as well so that they feel more conscious about their performance as well. This is after all a team game. Even though their game against South Africa was a warm up game, Pakistan winning that game quite easily surely boosted their confidence and I hope they take this confidence to the games that matter. Inzi should always be pumped up when he is representing and captaining Pakistan, no matter how the team performs. Body language in sulking or lost facial expressions sends negative signals to all around. Anyway, all the best to Pakistan in this WORLD CUP and CHEERS to all Pak cricket fans.

  • Junaid Arshad on March 12, 2007, 14:24 GMT

    I personally did not feel good when the Pakistan team departed from home but after their performance against South Africa we can definitely tie some hopes with them and I am very much hopeful that they will make it to at least semi finals. About captaincy, I think you are right that as our batting this also depends heavily on the trio of Inzamam, Younis Khan and Mohammad Yousuf...

  • Ahmed Siddiqui on March 12, 2007, 14:21 GMT

    Dear Kamran, Finally a very philosophical thread to talk about and something that has a core essence to this team making or breaking in this tournament...true all the wisdom combined in the team and playing to each players strength by empowering senior players and emphasizing their exact role and contribution can yield positives and a sense of acheivement....hence a senior player's input can add value and reduce the stress levels which can be shouldered collectively....this was reminisent in sides that had aging senior players of yesteryears...namely the England...Australia and India..the team that won the 1983 World Cup..where the Captain was assisted with the input of the more experienced players. we have to remember that it is after all a team game...it could be a bowler coming to the Captain saying that he feels he needs a shot at a particular player of the opposition. One thing is for sure that the game now a days is far from the conventional one days where you start with the fast bowlers and then with the second string attack and then buy time with your part timers...we saw the innovation of spin being introduced from the first over by New Zealand in the 1992 W.C which paid off initially...or the likes pinch hitters in the first 15 overs...hence being innovative...proactive and playing with a game plan. More like a S.W.O.T analysis of each side and then each player..This can be seen with the leading sides of the game namely Australia and South Africa... hence you hit the nail on the head unless Inzi does a crash course on leading from the front and be proactve and not reactive the results would pretty much be the same...Make it happen Inzi like your life depends on it and to play each game with the zest like it's your last...then only then will the side rise to the occasion and compete with the best and the best part of the senario is practically everyone with an inkling in cricket has written Pakistan off and that does take the pressure off...

  • Aamer on March 12, 2007, 14:19 GMT

    Great motivating stuff. Finally we have something positive from the critics. Thats it..... "Win or loose just fight , no body is going to critisize u!" BRAVO. come on team PAKISTAN, we want u to fight.

  • Usman - Islamabad Pakistan on March 12, 2007, 14:12 GMT

    WELL, I PARTIALLY AGREE WITH WHAT KAMRAN ABBASSI HAS INKED IN HIS LATEST COLUMN.

    What he is alluding to is that Inzamam is completely devoid of demonstrating reasonable leadership skills when Pakistan has its back against the wall. Which I totally agree.

    However, when KA suggests that Inzamam should "get his head in the game, lead like a champion" in this World Cup, he is presuming that one can change ones nature along with deep-rooted behavioral instincts by just trying. Well that is where KA needs to think twice!!! KA’s comments are grossly misplaced when he suggests that Inzamam should start changing his behavior at the eleventh hour in his career and just erase what he has been doing all along.

    What Inzamam needs to do is to do what he does best. Take the bull by its horn and lead by example. He has been lucky to be endowed with many extraordinary God gifted abilties/talents in cricket, leadership for one, is something he missed out totally.

    I AM WITH INZAMAM ALL THE WAY THROUGH WINNING THE CHAMPIONSHIP TROPHY.

    AT TIMES, DISPLAY OF EXTRA SPECIAL TALENTS AMULGAMATED WITH A FEW STROKES OF LUCK COMPETES AND OVERCOMES THE BEST LEADERSHIPS!!

    WE SHOULD MAKE THE MOST OF WHAT WE HAVE GOT AND NOT SHOULD NOT ASK FOR THE MOON!!

  • Akhlaq Hanif on March 12, 2007, 14:09 GMT

    This is why I feel Pakistan wont win the World Cup in my opinion.

    I completely agree, when the team is doing well and getting the rave reviews, Inzamam soaks it up. But on the pitch, when the team needs the captain to lead from the front, Inzy simply can't. I remember a while back when Younis Khan was captain of the one day side in England I think it was, and I remember how he captained positively and was always talking to the bowlers, offering encouragement. Inzamam stays in the slip position, watching from afar. How can bowlers have confidence from their skipper when's he's comfortably standing in the slips?

    My conclusion would be is to allow Younis Khan the responsibility of being "Mr Motivator", tell him to be Inzy's voice to the bowlers. Ive always felt Khan would be better captaining in ODI's than Inzamam.

    But we'll have to see whether Inzamam's leadership qualities will bring the coveted trophy to Pakistan.

  • Murtaza on March 12, 2007, 14:07 GMT

    i fink inzi iz a gud captain he has helped pakistan win games from the brink of loss

  • Ch. Shahbaz on March 12, 2007, 14:04 GMT

    Hello,

    Very rite about the state of the world cup, it is wide open, for anybody to take by putting in the rite effort and passion. Pakistan only need mental application and they can surely do it.

    I believe in Inzamam's captaincy, though agree with your assesment viz his outlook and that he needs to change it a bit. But he has the sense and the wisdom to do it, and with Woolmer to firmly back him up, I hope he will!!

    Shahbaz. Islamabad Pakistan.

  • Usman Shahid on March 12, 2007, 14:01 GMT

    Inzamam is a true Pakistani hero. No matter how Pakistan perform in this world cup, he will be remembered and missed personally as a patriotic guy and one who always tries Pakistan to victory. I am not sure if there will be anyone similar to Inzamam ul haq not captaincy wise but for sure personality wise. This young team looks up to him and treats him like a big brother. The way he came out in the ceremony, he was the only captain to look so enthusiastic and hopeful for a chance to win the World Cup. Even though he has lost his two strike bowlers, he has not given up hope and I feel the way he came out in the ceremony was to show his young team that I am with you and we can still do it. That to me is a great leader. May Allah bless him and help Pakistan win the World Cup 2007 with Inzamam our 1992 hero retiring on a emotional but graceful note. We love you Inzamam!!!

  • Asif Naqvi,Pakistan on March 12, 2007, 14:00 GMT

    Actually the problem with Inzimam is that he is not expressive at all, while a captain should be conveying through his chat and gestures even if he is not out-spoken.his silence becomes mysterious for the boys and it keeps them in un-certainity also.but it does`t mean that Inzi has`t got a thinking brain.he keeps observing the situation silently plus he does not seem to be a believer of consulting other team-mates for making on the spot decesions.the only voice that hampers his decesions is of Woolmers.

    Secondly because Inzi is a bit slow to move/slow to take decesions where it becomes obligatory to take avasive action some times,so hes called Lazy at times wich he is not in actual.

    I think this woolmer guy has done enough hard work on Inzis captaincy and Inzimam is also enough experienced for this post that he can overcome these short-comings in this mega event.

    Imran khan has rightly advised Inzi to come up in the batting order to play decesive role in the teams performane and Inzi has also shown interest in doing that.that is one thing i would like to see happening in the up-coming world cup.the leader should lead right from the front.best luck for Inzi and best luck for the Greens.

  • Fahim on March 12, 2007, 13:59 GMT

    I guess you are right in a ways and wrong in other as ppl are also talking about M. Veghan for non performing capt.

  • Talal Hasan Cambridge on March 12, 2007, 13:55 GMT

    Dear Kami and PAKSPIN READERS

    I think you are being very unfair to Inzi. I have seen him on numerous occassions where he has been very proactive in his captaincy. It is very easy to blame the captain when the team aren't doing very well.

    I think you need to have a wider perspective. There is the old cleeshay that a workman is as good as his tools. The same metaphor could be used with the captain being as good his bowlers.

    If the bowlers don;t bowl to plans they will be punished by quality players.

    One day cricket has become a lot more difficult for bowlers since the advent of the powerplays. Imran Khan did not have to deal with powerplays in his time. He had easier conditions to captain in.

    Inzi has admitted himself that he doesn;t have they eye for talent that imran khan had. Imran Khan was a very good psychologist, he could tell by just looking at his opposite number whether the opposition were up for the challenge or not. That is a very special gift which only a handful of people possess.

    In regards to Ricky Ponting and Warne we all know who was in charge of that team...

    I do agree that the pakistan players need to stand up and be counted and if they play smartly then I will be content with that.

    If all the players have the ability to think like intelligent cricketers then they will have gained respect from the fans.

  • khansahab on March 12, 2007, 13:55 GMT

    Mr Abbasi,

    Yesterday I saw this programme hosted by Rameez Raja where Inzamam and Imran Khan were guests. Inzamam portrayed himself to be a thinking captain and everything with a general awareness of cricket knows that Inzamam’s insecurities are always exaggerated. The criticism which remains, however, is that Inzamam’s on-field strategies are lacking. Most of the insightful and well-read Pakistani fans also know that relying too much on Allah is a negative attribute of Inzamam’s captaincy. I also felt that Inzamam did not have much of an idea how to utilise his bowlers’ talent fully. For the first time in my life, I had an opportunity to disagree with Imran Khan too over some issues: 1) Imran thinks that “specialist openers” need to be played more regularly 2) That Akmal and Malik should not open Owing to Inzamam’s usual inexpressive countenance, I could not fathom how he would be inclined to digest those comments. I have mentioned before that Malik should not be messed about with his current middle order batting slot because he has recently shown good temperament batting in that position. However, because of the many reasons why Pakistan can’t get good openers I do feel that Akmal or Malik are better bets to open because it provides Inzi with a chance to play specialist/in-form players in their respective positions. Inzi needs to lead from the front. Younis Khan wants to amass popularity; that is why he adopts the easy going attitude. He needs to be more assertive and interventionist in his approach if he wants players to follow his example, consider their weaknesses, adopt a mentally strong attitude and perform. That is the only flaw I see with his potential captaincy. Younis needs to use his hands and feet more than his gob. Yousuf should be given opportunities to consult Inzi; Yousuf is more experienced than Younis and his recent conversion has made him mentally strong. The big 3 need to get their act together- their actions will speak louder than their words and junior players will follow suit. There is a “Jazba Junoon” factor in the team at the moment- I condemn playing cricket from the heart rather than the mind, but using their heart to get the adrenaline going is not a bad idea for this World Cup. Most importantly of all, Inzi needs to ignite the fire into players like Sami. Imran Khan (and I fully agree) mentioned that Sami needs to be told just to concentrate on bowling quickly and playing his natural game. Inzi told Sami to shorten his run-up which worsened Sami’s form. Imran is right in saying that Sami is a rare talent- ability to bowl at skiddy length at 90 mph, swing the ball both ways, quick yorkers, reverse swing- you name it. Yes he has been very unimpressive over the past few years, so much so that it would have seemed reasonable to exclude him from the squad but now he is a member of the squad and he bowled well in the match vs South Africa. I do believe that if Inzi can make Sami feel “wanted” rather than making him feel that he is an almost-incompetent replacement for Akhtar and Asif, Sami can play a key role in Pakistan’s chances. Imran was right about one more thing- if Inzi & co give their 100% and not get themselves out/ drop catches and fight to the last bowl, Pakistani fans will not be that cross. Remember that match vs India in Karachi where Pakistan needed a six off the last delivery, at least they fought hard. The majority of Pakistani fans were not angry- they might have been sorrowful but they were not burning effigies etc. Finally I give dua’a to Inzi & Co. Go out and fight like tigers. Sami/Rao/ Gul and even the ever-worsening Rana, you have it in you to even trouble Australia on your day- give it your bleeding 100%!! Malik, Afridi, Mahmood, you are players who can turn any game around at any stage- go for it! Nazir and Hafeez, you are paindus but unleash hell on them and for God’s sake use your mind rather than heart when you’re “on the field”.

  • HANIF Noorani on March 12, 2007, 13:51 GMT

    Mr. Kamran! You have pinpointed it absolutely correct. His lethargic approach has often let us down. But it's like They say: " Better Late than Never." I am more than an Optimist about my team's Chances. Adversity always brings the best out of Pakistan Team. Recall the 2003 WC, we almost had everything in our Jinx but still couldnt get thru. Come On Inzi Bhai!!! U have to lead from the front. Just invigorate our memories of the Series in India and defy all the vacillating Odds against Pakistani Team....... We are Proud Pakistanis, make us prouder.....Bring the Trophy Home. InshaALLAH. PAKISTAN, Zinda baad

  • Shahzad on March 12, 2007, 13:50 GMT

    I believe, though there are few drawbacks in the leadership of Inzimam but we do not have any other option, there is no one in the team of that calibre to lead. Younis Khan is not mature enough to lead. I believe Inzi is the man who have united the team by behaving in a polite way and creating respect in the hearts of team members for him, which is the biggest success. Remember in the past some time we used to have team of heroes but individual heroes not a team, they had hate for each other in their brains. I agree with Imran Khan's opinion that inzi should improve by leading from the front, he should bat at higher order by putting Younis at No 5. I do not understand why Younis is considered as next leader by neglecting Yousaf who is senior and better player as well. I think biggest mistake Inzi did in his captaincy career is not to support Waqar younis during this issue of coaching. He is the gem, he could teach the skill to every bowler what the bowlers from other counties dream, we wasted that gem. Let us encorage our team for the world cup by positive comments instead extreme criticism.

  • Adil on March 12, 2007, 13:40 GMT

    I think its Inzimams last World Cup and surely I think he has planned something big this time wth the support of his team mates when he will leave we are going to lose a gem.

  • Numaan on March 12, 2007, 13:39 GMT

    Nice article, I was just wondering who people think should be the next captain of pakistan after Inzamam goes. Having looked at the players for me theres only one person that stands out to be a potentially good captain and probably to the surprise of most I say Hafeez. Theres a certain glimmer of determination in his eyes that the other players don't have, he always gives it his all whether it be batting, bowling or fielding. The most obvious choice I guess is younis, but he is too arogant to deserve the captancy any thoughts?

  • Yasir Khan on March 12, 2007, 13:38 GMT

    Very well written, once again. I totally agree with what you've said. Its time that Inzy should put the same leadership skill in his captaincy, which we only see in him while he is at the crease.

  • Mubasher Hassan Khan, Lahore on March 12, 2007, 13:34 GMT

    I feel Inzy has got good players to support him in desperate moments in form of Younis Khan, Mohammad Yousuf ,Afridi and not the least Kamran Akmal. I feel the wicket keeper knows a lot of things about the batsmen on crease. In my opinion, wicket keeper's opinion is very much important. Kamran should ralize his responsibility and come front to help his skipper. I agree, that Inzy needs to spread fear of defeat in his men. On paper, Pakistan is short of good bowling resources but I feel young guns have got a great chance to stamp their authority in the team and become hero on this biggest event of cricket. This is last and final world cup for Inzy and we should give him a big hand and support our team rather criticize them.

  • JAVED A. KHAN, MONTREAL, CANADA on March 12, 2007, 13:27 GMT

    LOL Mr. Kamran Abbassi, once again you are leading this debate like, 'a dealer of hope' by drawing comparisons between Imran Khan and Inzamam. I think it is too late now to change the sheep in to a tiger. Unless you are trying to lead just a debate on leadership and hope, and that too on the pretext of the famous proverbial quote: 'A leader is a dealer in hope'. You are talking about the 'collective leadership' roles by citing examples of Miandad, Shane Warne etc. assisting their Marshals!

    Inzamam's team doesn't have those cricketing brains in his side, besides his team in the recent past has gone topsy-turvy from ball tampering, to drug accusations, to injuries, to gas leaks (according to Kaneria that happens everyday in Pakistan!) Imran's team was referred as 'cornered and injured tigers' whereas, Inzamam's team has been labeled as 'a flock of sheep'. And that is because of his laid back and lethargic attitude. From the outset he was demonstrating a negative attitude, especially when he gave that interview before the departure to the Caribbean. But, it is good to see that his mood has changed in the Caribbean.

    Like you wrote after seeing him at the opening ceremony that Inzamam was happy and waving at the crowd enthusiastically' and that is a positive sign. Yes, it is indeed true that happiness breeds positivity and it is is certainly going to inspire the team and give them the courage to play in difficult conditions and situations. And this is one of the qualities of a leader. The leader doesn't develop courage by being happy in his relationships everyday and all the time but, he develops it by surviving during difficult times and by challenging adversity. I would like to quote the "Petit Caporal" Napoleon Bonaparte here, he said, "Adversity is the midwife of genius." Inzi is not a genius when it comes to lead, but he certainly is one when comes to bat in difficult times and conditions.

    Assuming that Inzamam's team is not cornered tigers, but a flock of sheep and him being the humble shepherd, I would say that instead of emulating Imran Khan or Genghis Khan, right now he needs to persuade his sheep that their interests and the interest of the shepherd are the same, that will give them a glimmer of hope, then he can instill some courage in them to move forward, one step at a time, and every step will make them stronger and give them the courage to see that they have come closer to the bridge and they will cross the bridge! And that would be a very courageous attempt to cross the bridge slowly and peacefully and, 'courage is like love, it must have hope for nourishment.'

  • Rizwan Younus on March 12, 2007, 13:27 GMT

    Salam All! Hey Kamran really appreciate your articles but sometimes i feel that you should appreciate and respect Inzamam a lot more. He is not a natural leader everybody knows this he has learnt to be captain and has improved a great deal since he first took over. My personal feeling is that he will be a revelation this world cup as it is his last and just like the first world cup i feel that he may lift the trophy. Yes he can be larthagic but what about his countless match winning innings when everyone around him is falling apart?? Forget the negativity Let The Games begin! The Hosts Against The Unpredictables Bring It Home Boys!

  • mohammed yousuf on March 12, 2007, 13:24 GMT

    slam bro

    i was watching this pogram on tv last night were they had inzy and imran khan on at the same time answering qesuations and what mr khan was saying that he feels that inzy is too laid back and because of this the team suffers he wanted inzy to always think and share his thought with the team.

    one of the qeustions asked was that what would it take to inzy to become like imran khan?

    imran replied: show ur hunger become more passionate listen to every member of the team hear what they have to say talk to the senior members of the team and then make ur move and only then u will be like imran khan.

    what we need from inzy is that hunger he showed on the tour of india in 2005 and then he will be leading from the front. COME ON MR INZAMAM UL HAQ U CAN DO IT. INSHALLAH. ALL THE BEST FROM THE PAKISTANI SUPPORTSER.

  • H.Malik on March 12, 2007, 13:14 GMT

    Dear Kamran , I suppose your words of wisdom would fly over the head of Inzi , You must be joking to expect miracles from a person of such such negativity that all his talks start from the word " Nahin " , His wisdon reported in the Dawn of today's E-based updates " It is his goal to win the wordl cup for Pakistan " Big words and big aim but with defetated mentality because soon after his said these words , his negativity & defeated mentality crept into his thoughts and he continued " if not this time , he will keep trying !!!!! " He is waering as reported a sweet shirt with slogans " EAT , SLEEP , JYM " you expect from such a defeated mentality to lead from the front ?? , You must be asking for a moon , instead if you would have asked him to lead from the front and provide the nation a lot of " Parathas and glases of Lassi " perhpas then your desires would be fullfilled with abondance . I do not know who ever considered him to be a captain material , not all godd batsmen or bowlers can be a good captain or a good coach , otherwise Sir VIVIAN RICHARD would not come into mind . INZI is another one , Javed and Wasim were too of the same kind. Brilliant tachtician & a stree fighter , superb left arm fast bowler BUT both were medicore people managers when it came to captaining or coaching . INZI is not half that good so why waisting your thoguhts even on him providing the leadership upfront and lead by example and generate fighting spirit in these YOYOs ..........

  • YS on March 12, 2007, 13:10 GMT

    Kamran, the problem with you and many other Pakistanis commenting on your blogs is that you look at Inzi's leadership through the eyes of Imran. Imran only knows one way and yes while that is a good way, it is not the only way. I was seeing a program hosted by Ramiz in LUMS yesterday where he invited both Imran and Inzi. The things Inzi was saying in there lead me to believe he is fully aware of what to do and how to lead this team. He is not captain to please you guys. He is a captain for the team and to lead them to victories. In the last few years, he has done enough of that and yet you still go on and on about his captaincy. His captaincy has been more successful for Pakistan than Wasim Akram who was hailed by Imran as a great leader and who, by becoming captain, effectively ended the career of the deserving Miandad - all because Imran said so. It is time we get out of the shadow of Imran's comments and start thinking for ourselves. Imran is a story of the past and he has no interest in running any cricket affairs in the country. He does not want to coach or give advice and yet you people keep going back to this hypocrite. He keeps supporting people like Mohd. Sami and claims he is not given enough chances by Inzi. Imran brought a lot of good things to Pakistan on the field. But off it, he is a huge dissappointment. He has an agenda and knows that he can manipulate the average Pakistani mind due to his position. We are just fools for quoting him in every cricket discussion we ever have.

    Inzi is the best we have right now and he does a pretty good job being humble and leading by example, leading by caring about his team. I saw Inzi call his team his "little brothers". When did any other Pakistani captain do that? He geniunely cares for them and they respond with the utmost respect for him. As for your suggestion on seeking feedback from his senior players, I am not sure if you live in a parallel universe or something but every time I see a match, I find Younis, Yousuf, Afridi and Malik providing input to Inzi which he takes in and does what is in the best interest of the team. Yes, Inzi has periods where I wish he was more active. But all these so-called great captains you mention go through the same periods. You just conveniently forget them when you want to.

  • Anthony on March 12, 2007, 13:03 GMT

    I am Sri Lankan fan, yet I have been the most hardcore Pakistan fan since seeing the greens lift the 1992 cup in my childhood. I think this is Pakistan's best chance yet. For no logical reason. I just feel it. That being said, whatever happens, I feel a brown boy is lifting this cup. For once, I hope the subcontinent supports all three teams (even Bangladesh if you're feeling sporting):

    India ki Jai, Pakistan Zindabad, Sri Lanka Jayawewa..(hope I haven't butchered the first two)

  • Jibran on March 12, 2007, 13:01 GMT

    Indeed, last night Tony Cozier introduced Inzamam with the echoing thoughts that he was the only veteran from our 92 Triumph. In this, he stands alone in his team.

    As important as his composure and calm might be, with constant controversy pegging his side back the last ten or eleven months, Inzamam will need to provide a lot of confidence and belief to this side. Given the recent past and the spate of injuries, three words; Corner, Wounded, Tiger!

  • Umair Saeed on March 12, 2007, 13:01 GMT

    I totaly agree with you Kamran Bhai. Since Inzamam has been captain I cannot remember a game where his leadership skills in the field (not batting) have gotten Pakistan out of trouble. But it is the time now where Inzamam has to use his council wisely as I feel there are cricketers in this side who have the ability to make changes and influence matches. Come on Inzi and the boys its time to stand up and be counted.

    Pakistan has the most talented team but what I fear, as do many others, is their ability to assess the situation and respond to it but if they can

  • Irfan A Awan on March 12, 2007, 12:57 GMT

    Kamran, I totally agree with u. Inzi, along with all senior and junior player have to show their character that they are ONE not Eleven. To be very honest with you not even a single second I ever thought that Pakistan is out from the tournament as everybody says.

  • Jamil, Dushanbe ,Tajikistan on March 12, 2007, 12:51 GMT

    Nothing to disagree about the laid back style of Inzi’s captaincy, but I think it is time to back our team, the captain and all the players. So good luck Pak team!

  • mohidin gundroo on March 12, 2007, 12:48 GMT

    It is not the right time to discuss this issue.He is the captain of the ship, the best under the cicumstances.I dont see no other alternative ready to take on tha role of captain even after the world cup, certainly not youns khan-perhaps shohaib malik may be the option in future.what is needed now is for us all pak supporters is to be positive and contuctive in our comments to boost the morale of inzi/bob and the team.This worldcup is wide open as never before. what we do expect is our team is to give it a best shot.we do have a handicap of a weak bowling attack. Thanks to SA, WE will miss asif.

  • Afzaal Khan on March 12, 2007, 12:39 GMT

    Douever get tired of bashing Inzi? Can this guy do anything at all to please u? I guess not lolz

  • Masaood Yunus on March 12, 2007, 12:38 GMT

    Kamran, aren't you being pessimistic now ? How many times will you bring up Inzi's leadership ? With just one day from the official worldcup start, don't you think your concerns are already in the team management's mind ? I don't doubt your concerns but I am concerned about the timing. This discussion should have taken place at least a few weeks ago. Inzamam is now Pakistan's Captain and we should stand by him. If we agree that he is a senior player and sense responsibility then who else will be more concerned about this World Cup than Inzi himself ? I think its time we all should give him a break and back him. It is indeed a known fact that Inzi does consult his fellow senior players but ultimately the decision is the Captains. We never know Inzi's silent authority might boom into something big this World Cup. Also, I believe it was a good gesture from Pakistan's Captain as he was all smiling and waving to the crowd. We should welcome Pakistan to this World Cup with open arms and back our team and Captain now. There are no If's and But's now. This is what we got and this is what we will have to support throughout the tournament. I am not depressed - as your post sounds, but optimistic about my teams chances. Let all of us be optimistic and back a lot of back door work by our team that we all are not aware of.

  • Ahmed Moizuddin Javeed on March 12, 2007, 12:36 GMT

    Assalamualaikum,Inzi is a rock solid batsmen he can take the game away from any team by his bating ability,but as a captain certainly not,Ihad been watching many games recently played in south africa to the surprise many of them slipped away due to his untimely and wrong decissions,isuggest him that to lead the team from the front he should involve atleast senior collegues of the team such as Yunis khan, Mohammed Yousuf& others before taking any decission at crusial times,I respect Inzi as an individual.Ihope that they will learn from there past mistakes and make the event memorable for them and their country by the blessings of ALMIGTY ALLAH.Iwish them all the best and pray for them, Inshallah they will emerge winners letting all the critics down.

  • Satyajit on March 12, 2007, 12:30 GMT

    I personally feel that Inzamam's leadership style can be best described as "non-leadership". He lacks the acumen and zest which are pre-requisites for the job. He is probably the calmest batsman in the team but calmness does not always equate to good leadership.And add to this his total ineptitude in the field! Pakistan is a fiery team and probably a fast bowler is most suited for the job.Wasim Akram and Imran Khan were both good captains and equally good bowlers.That's got to prove someting is it not?Unfortunately Pakistan at this point in time do not have any such bowler.That's the pity really. I would also like to raise another slightly controversial issue. Inzamam is a very devout man and we all respect him for that.But I seriuosly feel that all this wearing your religion on your sleeve thing hasn't been all that helpful at all. I distinctly remember the pakistani team in the 99 wc. That was probably the best pak team ever and there was never a public display of religion as there is now. And this seems to have seeped into the U-19 level too. Imran Khan,Wasim Akram,Waqar and all the other greats never found it necessary to grow their beards. And Bob isnt even an Asian let alone a muslim. So where does this take us in terms of Coach-team bonding?? No offence meant to anyone.Just thought that this was an angle to be considered too Cheers and good luck to Inzy

  • rodzilla1010 on March 12, 2007, 12:29 GMT

    Kamran, your articles are so depressing, i feel like putting bullet in my head after reading them. Cmon man, stop critising, save it for later...for once cheer the damn team.

    And lets enjoy the cricket

  • Waqas Akhtar on March 12, 2007, 12:27 GMT

    Inzi has been a good leader regardless of what ppl might say..Yes he has been a bit lazy every now and then and in the end it is the outcome of the game that matters the most..Under his leadership, this team is united like no other pakistani team has been even in the days if Imran Khan, there was division but Imran Khan was an exception..we should not be comparing Imran Khan to Inzi. Inzi needs to get his form back with the bat and when he is at his best with the bat, he is good as a leader..He has to lead by example and I am hopeful of him doing jsut that this tournament..Not a loto f experts are giving pakistan a chance to be in the final four but I think they have what it takes to be there and perhapes even go beyond that but for them to do that..they have to play every game like its a do or die situation and they need their leader in Inzi to lead form the front.

  • Saqib on March 12, 2007, 12:21 GMT

    AOA

    For once leave Inzamam alone and see what he do in this WC. I think if he is cheering and waving I think there is nothing wrong in it.

    Our Prayers are with our team and INSHALLAH our team will win

    ALLAH HAFIZ

  • Harry Iyris on March 12, 2007, 12:16 GMT

    Inzy may not be charismatic like Akram or Imran but he is full of determination and commands respect of team. He knows the strength of each player of his team and weakness of opposition. Young Players like Gul,Imran Nazir, Akmal, Afridi have his confidence and are going to bloom in this world cup.On field he may not be physically demonstrative but he is mentally thinking and analysing. I hope he strikes golden form, so that he can inspire and concentrate on captaincy, otherwise he can go into shell.

  • amin polani on March 12, 2007, 11:59 GMT

    The leadership style can not change over night every style has its pros and cons... so Inzi Bhai best of luck with world cup and do win it for us

  • Khizar Hayat on March 12, 2007, 11:54 GMT

    But the key is what Imran said in his column today - Inzamam must lead from the front.

  • Khizar Hayat on March 12, 2007, 11:53 GMT

    I agree with every word of your comments, Kamran!

  • Usman Tahir on March 12, 2007, 11:52 GMT

    Inzamam doesnt need advice from retired players , least of all you Kamran !

    In his book, Captain D. Michael Abrashoff recounts the following traits of leadership as critical

    1. Take command. 2. Lead by example. 3. Listen aggressively. 4. Communicate purpose and meaning. 5. Create a climate of trust. 6. Look for results, not salutes. 7. Take calculated risks. 8. Go beyond standard procedure. 9. Build up your people. 10. Generate unity.

    if inzamam can manage these pakistan will get to the final

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • Usman Tahir on March 12, 2007, 11:52 GMT

    Inzamam doesnt need advice from retired players , least of all you Kamran !

    In his book, Captain D. Michael Abrashoff recounts the following traits of leadership as critical

    1. Take command. 2. Lead by example. 3. Listen aggressively. 4. Communicate purpose and meaning. 5. Create a climate of trust. 6. Look for results, not salutes. 7. Take calculated risks. 8. Go beyond standard procedure. 9. Build up your people. 10. Generate unity.

    if inzamam can manage these pakistan will get to the final

  • Khizar Hayat on March 12, 2007, 11:53 GMT

    I agree with every word of your comments, Kamran!

  • Khizar Hayat on March 12, 2007, 11:54 GMT

    But the key is what Imran said in his column today - Inzamam must lead from the front.

  • amin polani on March 12, 2007, 11:59 GMT

    The leadership style can not change over night every style has its pros and cons... so Inzi Bhai best of luck with world cup and do win it for us

  • Harry Iyris on March 12, 2007, 12:16 GMT

    Inzy may not be charismatic like Akram or Imran but he is full of determination and commands respect of team. He knows the strength of each player of his team and weakness of opposition. Young Players like Gul,Imran Nazir, Akmal, Afridi have his confidence and are going to bloom in this world cup.On field he may not be physically demonstrative but he is mentally thinking and analysing. I hope he strikes golden form, so that he can inspire and concentrate on captaincy, otherwise he can go into shell.

  • Saqib on March 12, 2007, 12:21 GMT

    AOA

    For once leave Inzamam alone and see what he do in this WC. I think if he is cheering and waving I think there is nothing wrong in it.

    Our Prayers are with our team and INSHALLAH our team will win

    ALLAH HAFIZ

  • Waqas Akhtar on March 12, 2007, 12:27 GMT

    Inzi has been a good leader regardless of what ppl might say..Yes he has been a bit lazy every now and then and in the end it is the outcome of the game that matters the most..Under his leadership, this team is united like no other pakistani team has been even in the days if Imran Khan, there was division but Imran Khan was an exception..we should not be comparing Imran Khan to Inzi. Inzi needs to get his form back with the bat and when he is at his best with the bat, he is good as a leader..He has to lead by example and I am hopeful of him doing jsut that this tournament..Not a loto f experts are giving pakistan a chance to be in the final four but I think they have what it takes to be there and perhapes even go beyond that but for them to do that..they have to play every game like its a do or die situation and they need their leader in Inzi to lead form the front.

  • rodzilla1010 on March 12, 2007, 12:29 GMT

    Kamran, your articles are so depressing, i feel like putting bullet in my head after reading them. Cmon man, stop critising, save it for later...for once cheer the damn team.

    And lets enjoy the cricket

  • Satyajit on March 12, 2007, 12:30 GMT

    I personally feel that Inzamam's leadership style can be best described as "non-leadership". He lacks the acumen and zest which are pre-requisites for the job. He is probably the calmest batsman in the team but calmness does not always equate to good leadership.And add to this his total ineptitude in the field! Pakistan is a fiery team and probably a fast bowler is most suited for the job.Wasim Akram and Imran Khan were both good captains and equally good bowlers.That's got to prove someting is it not?Unfortunately Pakistan at this point in time do not have any such bowler.That's the pity really. I would also like to raise another slightly controversial issue. Inzamam is a very devout man and we all respect him for that.But I seriuosly feel that all this wearing your religion on your sleeve thing hasn't been all that helpful at all. I distinctly remember the pakistani team in the 99 wc. That was probably the best pak team ever and there was never a public display of religion as there is now. And this seems to have seeped into the U-19 level too. Imran Khan,Wasim Akram,Waqar and all the other greats never found it necessary to grow their beards. And Bob isnt even an Asian let alone a muslim. So where does this take us in terms of Coach-team bonding?? No offence meant to anyone.Just thought that this was an angle to be considered too Cheers and good luck to Inzy

  • Ahmed Moizuddin Javeed on March 12, 2007, 12:36 GMT

    Assalamualaikum,Inzi is a rock solid batsmen he can take the game away from any team by his bating ability,but as a captain certainly not,Ihad been watching many games recently played in south africa to the surprise many of them slipped away due to his untimely and wrong decissions,isuggest him that to lead the team from the front he should involve atleast senior collegues of the team such as Yunis khan, Mohammed Yousuf& others before taking any decission at crusial times,I respect Inzi as an individual.Ihope that they will learn from there past mistakes and make the event memorable for them and their country by the blessings of ALMIGTY ALLAH.Iwish them all the best and pray for them, Inshallah they will emerge winners letting all the critics down.