Age of Khan November 10, 2009

Disappointed in the desert

Younis Khan must address issues of form and selection or his ambition of leading until the next World Cup will become a fool’s dream
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Pakistan isn't a country to tolerate a non-contributing captain © AFP
 

This was set up to be an ideal start to Pakistan’s big year of international cricket. A World Twenty20 victory followed by a Champions Trophy semi-final were better outcomes than could have been imagined six months ago. Yes, the batting remained unpredictable but the bowling combination had quickly established itself as possibly the most exciting in limited overs cricket.

Younis Khan had tightened his grip on the captaincy, ready to build his team for great battles against Australia, England, at some point India, and then in the next World Cup. A fiery and ambitious vice-captain had restated support for his fellow Pathan’s leadership. All Younis now needed was a run of form to add some more clout to his captaincy.

The neutral venue was to the liking of Pakistan, homespun wickets that would encourage form from the most fragile of batsmen. Even the opposition boded well, a team that Pakistan are usually confident to beat.

Yet it all went wrong. Pakistan’s batsmen crumbled, leaving a teenage No. 10 to produce a most audacious innings, show his senior batsmen the art of determination, and offer Pakistan supporters some solace at this moment of disappointment.

The seeds of this defeat, however, were sown on the verandas of Lahore. Pakistan’s selection committee, possibly aided and abetted by their captain, played its usual dirty trick of changing the guard at the top of the batting order.

This seven-year itch is baffling. It hurts Pakistan. Since Saeed Anwar’s departure Pakistan have fiddled and failed with this crucial position. All short-term strategies based on personal likes and dislikes and nothing built to last.

Despite the loss in the Champions Trophy, Pakistan seemed to have arrived at a formula that could prosper, especially on the favourable wickets of UAE: Kamran Akmal to open with an ambitious striker. Instead Pakistan’s selectors, tinkers in chief, changed the personnel and the plan.

The touring party baffled us further by dropping the one major batting discovery of the past year, Umar Akmal, for the flimsiest of reasons. And then out went Mohammad Yousuf, a player whose position in the one-day team I’ve questioned myself but the decider seemed a strange time to switch strategies.

All this confusion does is question the new-found authority of Younis Khan. He remains the right leadership choice for Pakistan but he does himself no favours, in his new powerful incarnation, by allowing baffling decisions of strategy and selection.

Every captain makes mistakes. Yet successful captains are able to call on their personal form to cover their shortcomings. Younis faces a testing time. He strengthened his hand but lost his eye. Pakistan isn’t a country to tolerate a non-contributing captain. On the contrary, it depends on the performances of its captain to set the right example and deliver regular success.

These are issues, issues of selection and form, that Younis must address or his ambition of leading until the next World Cup will become a fool’s dream, his claim to the crown ring hollow. Pakistan cricket needs Younis to succeed. In many ways, the easy part was securing his position. Now he has to show greater skill by retaining it.

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

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • abdulla on December 18, 2009, 17:13 GMT

    pak cricpolitics is the reason for the debacle. captains down himself in teh state of series loss.it shows the irresponsibility and un maturity of younis.he should have lead the team and should nt step dowm like a coward.he should be removed surely

  • Rauf on November 11, 2009, 12:07 GMT

    Reading all the comments here asking for Younis's head and then suddenly this appears on cricinfo,

    http://www.cricinfo.com/pakistan/content/current/story/433991.html

    Any wonder Pakistan cricket is so unpredictable just like the country itself, dare I say. Younis was hero not too long ago and he is now a vilain. Was he pushed aside for NZ tour by PCB or he himself decided to hide away after the series' loss?

    They should come up with a quiz show aptly named "Let's guess Pakistan team and captain before every match". Winner will get to slap everyone in the PCB once during the match. Special extra slaps for Dasti after the match if he comes out with match fixing BS.

  • Mabsoos Ahmad on November 11, 2009, 11:58 GMT

    Perfect Surgery by Kamran Sahib. Too much tinkering in the batting order as well as over ambitious cost the services. Not to say about the lack of planning. Yes, a captain may try something different but not with the settled bunch of players. How on earth could drop Yousuf who has been most ever consistent palyers in the middle order, his average speaks about this. Remember that the team has not not able to find opener since the retirement of Saeed Anware and Aameer Sohail and the poor Yousuf has been carrying the burden from that time. Everyttime he comes to bat he has already lost 2 to 3 wickets and there is no run on the board. He steady the innings but we are not speaking in his favour but he has also been running himself out with no reason. We all know that a settled batting order is very essential for success. Recently Tendulkar has also blamed the defeat of the WC for tinkering the batting order. So, a well thought plan to be drafted and the combination equally...Thanks Ameer...

  • waterbuffalo on November 11, 2009, 11:35 GMT

    This Younis/Yousuf problem reminds me of Miandad and Imran refusing to play under each other or for each other--same thing happened with Waqar/Wasim-it is the same old story with Pakistan, always feuding and putting personal interest over the goals and hopes of the team and the country. No country in the world would drop a batsamn like Mohd Yousuf, but perhaps he did not want to play to prove a point to Younis Khan. It is very disappointing but really nothing new apropos Pakistan cricket. I just hope Pakistan does not get humiliated in Australia. For the sake of the country, try your best and at least win one test. Pakistan supporters and fans have been crying since 2007, ever since Ireland and Bob Woolmer's death. Please put aside your personal differences for the good of the team. You have the bowlers and the batsman, don't sell the nation out. Don't break our hearts. Please. Enough.

  • Muhammad Rizwan on November 11, 2009, 11:34 GMT

    Mudasar Siddiq, you rock, what a conclusive comment about Younis Khan, though this attitude problem of late possess more or less in all captains, I 100% agree with you, keep it up.

  • Saad Tariq on November 11, 2009, 11:31 GMT

    Younis Khan is practically useless, his batting does not justify his position in the team, its good to hear that he is out of the test matches. Good riddens to bad rubbish

  • arun on November 11, 2009, 11:25 GMT

    Yousuf should be selected to play ODIs at all. He should only be played in Test Cricket, like Laxman in India. Yes, Yousuf might score a fifty, but he will leak 20 runs in the field, and he will run out atleast 2 partners, which can be calculated at 20 runs per wicket. which means his positive run contribution is 50 and negative run contribution is 60. Pakistan always have trouble chasing low scores. Even during the time of Imran Khan (remember losing to India when chasing 125 in Sharjah), but there was Imran and Miandad to the rescue all the time. In 92 world cup also, every body talks about Inzi and Akram's heroics, but remember that would not have been possible without Imran and Minadad's slow and steady partnerships in the middle overs. No doubt pakistan have the talent, infact even current team is in par with team of the nineties, but its in the head pakistan needs to be strong. thats when they will win matches consistently.just look at the shots that the batsmen got out.

  • Muhammad Rizwan on November 11, 2009, 11:22 GMT

    Kamran Abbasi, if we forget about YK form with bat & just only talk about his leadership skills, I have no doubt in my mind that he is very average captain like Inzamam, we have lost matches against AUS & NZL in champions trophy just because of his field placings, in the end they just need singles to win the match & we could only won by getting them out but regret to say that Younus field placings were horrible & gave too many easy single which in the end cost us the match. All in all he don't deserve a place in side neither as a batsman nor as a captain. He is average captain like an average batsman. Its in the inerest of PAK cricket to get rid of him ASAP.

  • IMRAN KHAN on November 11, 2009, 11:17 GMT

    Younus must resign from Captaincy if he is true patriot. He is a burden on Pakistani team. People those think he is best choice for captaincy need to reply me What is his own credit in T20WC win?.nothing.Pakistan lost ODI&TEST against Australia,2 time against Srilanka,in Champions Trophy & now against New Zealand under his captaincy. His own performances since years not equal to a middle order player from any club like Sialkot,Karachi or Lahore. Pakistan must kick him out to prepare good side for WorldCup otherwise 2011 may also be like 2007.

  • Imran Yousaf on November 11, 2009, 11:17 GMT

    I fully agree. Younis Khan - if he is making the final selection decisions has lost the plot. We have used about 18 different opening partnerships since WC 2007 which is rediculous. If we dont have genuine openers than why not just get some decent middle order batsmen and get them to put their hands up to open. I would love to see Misbah and Fawad open. If Tendulkar, Ganguly, Laxman Dravid and now even Kalis can give their Middle order positions for the greater good than why cant the Pak batsmen.

    They do the complete opposite by dropping themselves down the order.

    Dropping a form batmen in Umar Akmal was baffling enought but than to recall him at the expense of you only decent batsman in Mohammad Yousuf was just total bunkum. I mean imagine the pressure now on Umar who has to perform in place of Yousuf.

    P.S Umar and Yousuf are the only current Pak batsmen to average over 40 and they both got dropped during this series...Genius!!!

  • abdulla on December 18, 2009, 17:13 GMT

    pak cricpolitics is the reason for the debacle. captains down himself in teh state of series loss.it shows the irresponsibility and un maturity of younis.he should have lead the team and should nt step dowm like a coward.he should be removed surely

  • Rauf on November 11, 2009, 12:07 GMT

    Reading all the comments here asking for Younis's head and then suddenly this appears on cricinfo,

    http://www.cricinfo.com/pakistan/content/current/story/433991.html

    Any wonder Pakistan cricket is so unpredictable just like the country itself, dare I say. Younis was hero not too long ago and he is now a vilain. Was he pushed aside for NZ tour by PCB or he himself decided to hide away after the series' loss?

    They should come up with a quiz show aptly named "Let's guess Pakistan team and captain before every match". Winner will get to slap everyone in the PCB once during the match. Special extra slaps for Dasti after the match if he comes out with match fixing BS.

  • Mabsoos Ahmad on November 11, 2009, 11:58 GMT

    Perfect Surgery by Kamran Sahib. Too much tinkering in the batting order as well as over ambitious cost the services. Not to say about the lack of planning. Yes, a captain may try something different but not with the settled bunch of players. How on earth could drop Yousuf who has been most ever consistent palyers in the middle order, his average speaks about this. Remember that the team has not not able to find opener since the retirement of Saeed Anware and Aameer Sohail and the poor Yousuf has been carrying the burden from that time. Everyttime he comes to bat he has already lost 2 to 3 wickets and there is no run on the board. He steady the innings but we are not speaking in his favour but he has also been running himself out with no reason. We all know that a settled batting order is very essential for success. Recently Tendulkar has also blamed the defeat of the WC for tinkering the batting order. So, a well thought plan to be drafted and the combination equally...Thanks Ameer...

  • waterbuffalo on November 11, 2009, 11:35 GMT

    This Younis/Yousuf problem reminds me of Miandad and Imran refusing to play under each other or for each other--same thing happened with Waqar/Wasim-it is the same old story with Pakistan, always feuding and putting personal interest over the goals and hopes of the team and the country. No country in the world would drop a batsamn like Mohd Yousuf, but perhaps he did not want to play to prove a point to Younis Khan. It is very disappointing but really nothing new apropos Pakistan cricket. I just hope Pakistan does not get humiliated in Australia. For the sake of the country, try your best and at least win one test. Pakistan supporters and fans have been crying since 2007, ever since Ireland and Bob Woolmer's death. Please put aside your personal differences for the good of the team. You have the bowlers and the batsman, don't sell the nation out. Don't break our hearts. Please. Enough.

  • Muhammad Rizwan on November 11, 2009, 11:34 GMT

    Mudasar Siddiq, you rock, what a conclusive comment about Younis Khan, though this attitude problem of late possess more or less in all captains, I 100% agree with you, keep it up.

  • Saad Tariq on November 11, 2009, 11:31 GMT

    Younis Khan is practically useless, his batting does not justify his position in the team, its good to hear that he is out of the test matches. Good riddens to bad rubbish

  • arun on November 11, 2009, 11:25 GMT

    Yousuf should be selected to play ODIs at all. He should only be played in Test Cricket, like Laxman in India. Yes, Yousuf might score a fifty, but he will leak 20 runs in the field, and he will run out atleast 2 partners, which can be calculated at 20 runs per wicket. which means his positive run contribution is 50 and negative run contribution is 60. Pakistan always have trouble chasing low scores. Even during the time of Imran Khan (remember losing to India when chasing 125 in Sharjah), but there was Imran and Miandad to the rescue all the time. In 92 world cup also, every body talks about Inzi and Akram's heroics, but remember that would not have been possible without Imran and Minadad's slow and steady partnerships in the middle overs. No doubt pakistan have the talent, infact even current team is in par with team of the nineties, but its in the head pakistan needs to be strong. thats when they will win matches consistently.just look at the shots that the batsmen got out.

  • Muhammad Rizwan on November 11, 2009, 11:22 GMT

    Kamran Abbasi, if we forget about YK form with bat & just only talk about his leadership skills, I have no doubt in my mind that he is very average captain like Inzamam, we have lost matches against AUS & NZL in champions trophy just because of his field placings, in the end they just need singles to win the match & we could only won by getting them out but regret to say that Younus field placings were horrible & gave too many easy single which in the end cost us the match. All in all he don't deserve a place in side neither as a batsman nor as a captain. He is average captain like an average batsman. Its in the inerest of PAK cricket to get rid of him ASAP.

  • IMRAN KHAN on November 11, 2009, 11:17 GMT

    Younus must resign from Captaincy if he is true patriot. He is a burden on Pakistani team. People those think he is best choice for captaincy need to reply me What is his own credit in T20WC win?.nothing.Pakistan lost ODI&TEST against Australia,2 time against Srilanka,in Champions Trophy & now against New Zealand under his captaincy. His own performances since years not equal to a middle order player from any club like Sialkot,Karachi or Lahore. Pakistan must kick him out to prepare good side for WorldCup otherwise 2011 may also be like 2007.

  • Imran Yousaf on November 11, 2009, 11:17 GMT

    I fully agree. Younis Khan - if he is making the final selection decisions has lost the plot. We have used about 18 different opening partnerships since WC 2007 which is rediculous. If we dont have genuine openers than why not just get some decent middle order batsmen and get them to put their hands up to open. I would love to see Misbah and Fawad open. If Tendulkar, Ganguly, Laxman Dravid and now even Kalis can give their Middle order positions for the greater good than why cant the Pak batsmen.

    They do the complete opposite by dropping themselves down the order.

    Dropping a form batmen in Umar Akmal was baffling enought but than to recall him at the expense of you only decent batsman in Mohammad Yousuf was just total bunkum. I mean imagine the pressure now on Umar who has to perform in place of Yousuf.

    P.S Umar and Yousuf are the only current Pak batsmen to average over 40 and they both got dropped during this series...Genius!!!

  • Khusro on November 11, 2009, 11:07 GMT

    he fact that he is feeling pressure is no excuse for his batting. He is the only one in the series despite afridi that can't be dropped for a match without injury. he is also the only one who can change his position to fit himself. In the decider, in bad form, he comes at number 3, gets a steady opener out, then gets himself out the next ball. I don't blame the rest of the team, when fom 48/0 you fall to 51/3, you will feel tremendous pressure. Umar Akmsl was obviosly worried with his confidence shattered. We know what Afridi and Malik are. Razzaq and Akmal don't usually cope under pressure so no surprise there. The only actual fault is Younis Khab, he didn't contribute at all in the whole series

  • Jawad on November 11, 2009, 10:57 GMT

    @by Kamran Abbasi sahab... "And then out went Mohammad Yousuf, a player whose position in the one-day team I’ve questioned myself..."

    Yousuf happens to be our best ODI player with an average of 40% spanning over years of fruitful knocks and Mr. Abbasi is questioning his place in ODI and not of Younis'? Strange personality...

  • Arshad Khan on November 11, 2009, 10:53 GMT

    It's strange but true: the moment Salman Butt steps into the side, strange things start happening and Pakistan manage to cluch defeat from the jaws of victory!! He seems to disbalance the whole set-up

  • iyyaz butt on November 11, 2009, 10:52 GMT

    I think the last ODI played was a disgrase.PCB should root out bribes and drop players who easily give away their wickets,as if they were reciving orders to give dolly catches and run outs.we the paying public are not so dum to buy this long standing drama, under performed by amutures.younus should go soon than latter.he is damaging pakistan cricket and respect.

  • Abde-Ali Bohra on November 11, 2009, 10:44 GMT

    Well, seeing the performance in the last match, clearly reflects, that Pakistani players esp. the seniors need more mental & psychological training, they lost the match in their heads, not while playing. Had playing be so difficult then amir & ajmal would not have played so great. Please include mohammad yousuf, at all levels, i promise he will avoid collapses in the batting order. Whether younis improves his run making or not, please let him be captain until the worldcup. If he was so dull, then pak would not have won T20 & reached semi final of champions trophy. Younis & yousuf are players that they would quit the game themselves, if their body & mind are up to the requirement. Love your players, the current lot is great. They can win the world cup. If one of these openers don't work out in the coming matches, then pls try Fawad Alam in the opening slot as his permanent position. If umar gul needs rest then include mohd asif. Never drop razzaq again. Malik should also be retained.

  • Kunal Talgeri on November 11, 2009, 10:29 GMT

    So what if Pakistan lost a 3-match series? It doesn't make Younis Khan any lesser a captain. It's high time we, in the sub-continent, learned to appreciate the finer points of a match rather hoping that our team always win. (Why can't captains try out something and fail?) It's heartening to see New Zealand pulling their weight with a bunch of young players. In India, an inspiring Aussie side (like Border's 1987 side) just beat India. So, why is everyone after Dhoni and the young players? We just got outplayed. It's tiring to see the cricket media constantly slicing and dicing results.

  • pier wasif on November 11, 2009, 10:12 GMT

    i am very dissapointed at Younis Khan if the captain performance is below standard he should resign not put condition to hold on to he power of Captaincy , we need to look at his performanc and desice if he is good for the job assined to him i believe that the team does not want him to lead them the whole tournament from sri lanka to abu-dhabi tells the truth about our unity in the team we have to learn fast but we never do the team has never collapsed this badly ever one game after the other & then the PCB has given him all the power he needs to further damege and demoralise the nation and the team. pier wasif

  • I R on November 11, 2009, 10:01 GMT

    God help the nation where Younis Khan can be in the side-- let alone the captain.Backlash I am sure will be another useless character like Afridi being given the role who is perhaps a good player of "GULI DANDA" than cricket. Why can be M YOUSAF not be a captain?Poor chap is now a muslim for God sake!!!!!!!!!! Where is Asif?He looked perfectly fit the last time I saw him play.Or Rana had to be taken for shopping in Dubai!!!! SHAME ON US AS A NATION. ITS NOT ONLY A MATCH ITS OUR PRIDE? BUT THEN AGAIN WE HAVE ALREADY SOLD IT !!!!SAD VERY SAD!!!

  • saud akhter on November 11, 2009, 9:55 GMT

    i would like to say that the big turning point of the match is when younus khan runs out salman butt for their own sake to rotate a strike is disastrous and from the very next ball play down the wrong line and caught in between frame of mind he should blame him self for the lost of this match rather than the other players now moving forward to middle order batsmen shoaib malik played a horrible shot to dismiss himself and kamran akmal make same mistake but umar gul what kind of batsman he is he is number ten batsman and played shot rather than given strike top abdul razzaq it is totally failure performance from Pakistan batsmen but aamer and saeed make proud the whole Pakistan with their crafty batting and aamer should become the number one all rounder in the world bowling from Pakistan where is Rao Ifthikar Anjum who is a good bowler better than umar gul in 50 over cricket should come back and played regularly with the team.

  • Usman on November 11, 2009, 9:27 GMT

    An endless debate, appointing Kami and Imran Nazir at top would have made no huge difference, their records speak for themselves. Had that been done, we would be criticising that move today. Truth is either we don't have potential players or PCB has no time other than munching pizzas!!!!!!

    In-fact a country which sees dozens of people dying every week, cricket remains no more a big issue and should not be. Not for me atleast!

  • Ali on November 11, 2009, 8:55 GMT

    younus must quit captaincy. If he can not score, then wuts the point in retaining him. his leadership qualities are not bright as well as he kept refusing to accept the responsibility of losing a game. neither he has good terms with boys. the only way to secure captaincy was to score runs and cement his place in the side ih which he miserably failed. so its time to quit captaincy and team.

  • Omer Malik on November 11, 2009, 8:50 GMT

    Younis Khan's poor performance in the ODI series has left question marks on his captaincy ? Admitting to the fact that us Pakistani's have changing attitudes , but below par performances even put a question mark on younis inclusion in a team ? . We all know younis khan is a better player than his recent adventures but a suicidal run out in a series decider , to get out the next ball and drop the simplest of the catches in a semi final ? You want your team to look up to you , not be part of their everyday jokes. Younis Khan for the time being does not even certify himself to be part of a challenging Pakistan team and in today's ODI fast paced game it is about time he is pardoned from his duties. As for Salman Butt he has his more than his share of chances and would love to see Imran farhat open with Kamran akmal and the middle order consisting of Malik,Umar akmal and Yousaf. All three who have distinguished themselves as regulars for Pakistani cricket.

  • Umair on November 11, 2009, 8:39 GMT

    Pakistan lost because of politics in the team. Pakistan lost because of bad policies (why try the tried and tested Salman Butt) Pakistan lost because of little crowd interest (why not play home series in England) Pakistan lost because they do not have a concept of their opening partnership i.e. they need to understand they need one opener who can clear the infield other who can carve the strike. We did not have the former one i.e. Imran Nazir

    Pakistan lost because of all non-cricketing reasons

    Pakistan is the only team to have come closest to Australia in Champions Trophy and on any given day they can beat any cricket team provided no politics exists in Pak Team

  • Ali on November 11, 2009, 8:06 GMT

    I think we should our captain 'Younas Khan' and we don't forget he is that man under whose supervision our nation got a gift of World T20.

  • Waqar on November 11, 2009, 8:04 GMT

    Younis has been am inconsistent captain with his brilliance and stupidity displayed in back to back matches. Unfortunately for Pakistan, we dont have a better candidate to replace him. Regarding his personal form, it has caused Paksitan 2 possible series wins, one when he dropped a lollypop catch in the semis of ICC, the second when he ridiculously ran out Salman and got out right next ball to turn the match on his head. If there was sane selection committee ever in place, Younis and Yousuf would be instantly dropped.

  • Hussain Khan on November 11, 2009, 8:00 GMT

    As I predicted NZ won 2-1. It's Pakistans inconsistancy which is a major problem. The world knows all too well the when Pakis play, they are more than likely to implode. Strange batting collapses are not unusual. Ask any cricket captain of any country and they will tell you that the Pakistan team is so unpredictable that that it is not certain which team will turn up to play, the good one or the bad one and this has been going on for decades. So why blame the captain, its ingrained in Paki blood (sometimes team disharmony, back stabbing) and it needs a major shift thinking by players and taking responsibility for your position in the team and country.My predictions for the upcoming tour of Australia: Tests: Aust 3-0. ODI: Aust 3-0. T20: Aust 1 Pakistan 1.

  • Zill on November 11, 2009, 7:56 GMT

    Its truee that he is out of form and must be feeling a great pressure related to his batting. But we should all wait for sometime and give this team and the captain to settle down. No where in the world is a captain changed so frequently even if he is going through a lean patch. Younus has proved himself as a quality batsman so its just a matter of time before he will be scoring again. As someone said, "form is temporary, but the class is permanent". Cricket is a teamsport, so often one or two players rescue their team if it gets into a trouble. Recently, Parveen Kumar has been doing it for India, and Mitchel Johnsson has also done it for Australia on couple of occasions. I have a full faith in Pakistan team and I am sure it will soon see better days.

  • Bilal Iqbal on November 11, 2009, 7:46 GMT

    Younis has not performed in a single one day or T20 in the past 6 months. It is a disturbing sight to see him play. While Dhoni & Ponting are leading from the front...Younis is hardly playing. What is worse as a Pakistani is to watch his interviews after the loss where he takes no personal blame.

  • Khair ul Alam on November 11, 2009, 7:34 GMT

    In the first game they left out Shoaib Malik. It didn't prove costly as Pakistan won. Then they left out Umar Akmal in the second game which was a baffling decision and only served to dent the young man's confidence without the team gaining anything. Then in the third game they took the ridiculous step of dropping Mohammed Yousuf. None of the three deserved to be dropped. In my opinion, the openers should have been kept the same as before - Kamran Akmal and Imran Nazir.

  • addas khan on November 11, 2009, 7:19 GMT

    If anyone knows their cricket and watched these matches will have observed how much of a lonesome figure Mohammed Yousuf is at the moment. He is our most senior batsman by far and he comes in at 6 for the 2nd ODI and then is dropped for the last one....nothing new there then we always treat our best players like trash! What is Pakistans problem? this guy can walk into any international side and still be successful yet he has a couple of bad matches and then he is left by the wayside yet again. who says he cant play 20/20 cricket...he is exactly who we need in all forms of the game....cos lets face it without him our batting is rubbish A very angry Mo Yo fan!!!!

  • AM on November 11, 2009, 6:58 GMT

    I was afraid of this kind of inconsistency from Pakistani cricketers ever since the departure of Imran Khan was imminent back in the late eighties. But all those cricketers who had a chance to play with Imran and Miandad delayed the inevitable for Pakistan for about a decade and a half. Bob Woolmer also helped. But now it seems confusion reigns supreme in Pakistan's cricket. I personally think Younus Khan is still Pakistan's best bet for the captaincy, but this frequent tinkering with the batting order must stop. Where there are so many critics with their daggers ready to strike, there is no tradition in Pakistan for an out of form Captain to drop himself from the side. I don't know what to suggest except maybe if Pakistan played 12 a side (11 bat, 11 field), Younus could let someone else take his place in the batting order for a match or two and skipper the side when Pakistan is fielding in those matches. Saeed Anwar and Waqar Younus were forced to retire by Tauqir Zia. We got what?

  • Bilal Choudry on November 11, 2009, 6:41 GMT

    I think it younis wants to get the combination right. It took him 3 to 4 matches in the T20 WC but didnt manage to do it in this series. I think the key for ODI would be a mix of people who have done it in the past and new blood. Only 2 of younis, yousuf and malik can play. Akmals and Fawad Alam should play every match. As for openers they have to be specialist I dont agree with kamran on the openers selection, considering the upcoming tour ... we have to look for specialist openers. Maybe its a good idea to ask Kamran to come into the middle order he looks good enough to do that

  • Ali on November 11, 2009, 6:34 GMT

    I don't understand u not liking Mohammad Yousuf when he has an average of 51 between 2007 and 2009. Younis Khan is an awful ODI player. Captions lead from the front and frankly Younis has never done that is ODI's.

  • Nasir Jamal on November 11, 2009, 6:28 GMT

    Pakistan was defeated not because of their batting but dirty politics in the team. Our senior player like Shahid Afridi, Shoaib Malik etc. are against the captaincy of Younis Khan. I agree that Younis has no place in the ODI squad right now but that is not the way in which Afridi and company are doing politics. They should realize this that they are playing for the country and not for their personal goals. The biggest mistake our board had made is that they had appionted different captains for ODI & T20. I believe that ODI & T20 captain should be same person. Apart from this all the players involved in politics from both camps(Younis or Afridi) should be ousted immediately, to show them that they are not important country and country's honour is important. Pakistan had a lot of young talent like Aamer & Umar Akmal we can build a good team of thorough professional crickters who will be honoured playing for their country and not interested in dirty politics.

  • Fayez on November 11, 2009, 6:25 GMT

    I didn't watch the matches but going by the scorecard, the openers were the only ones who showed some consistency. I do like Salman Butt - out of all the openers we have tried since Saeed Anwar, he is the only one with a "decent" technique, can play at a brisk rate and has some big scores under his belt.

  • Kool Kat on November 11, 2009, 6:01 GMT

    Poor technique cost Pakistan the final. The batsmen just did not know how to handle the short delivery. Maybe Yousuf would have shown better temperament and technique.

  • Mudassar Siddiq on November 11, 2009, 4:09 GMT

    I absolutely do not agree that Younas Khan can be a good captain. I always wonder, has anyone noticed his attitudes and the required mental soberness. His insane laughters and ridiculous body language in interviews even after ugliest of performances, outrightly disqulaifies him from the post. Winning or loosing is one thing and the ability to understand the situations at hand and capabilty to foster the strengths is another. Younas clearlry does not have them both.

  • kamran qureshi on November 11, 2009, 3:59 GMT

    What a disappointment.What went ing,Batting,Batting,Batting.Mike Bearley was the only captain in recent times,who could get selected on the captaincy alone.Younus Khan is no Mike Bearley.With so many mistakes during champions league,Younus got lucky with dasti,s fiasco and nobody really analysed his performance both as a captain and batsman.There was no sense in resting Yousuf in 50/50 when you have nobody in the middle order to play anchor role.younus,shoab,afridi must step up and take the responsibility and its criminal to have all these batsmen fail in the same match.Kudos to Aamir for the world record,the only positive for Pakistan.

  • Mehreen on November 11, 2009, 2:22 GMT

    Well put Mr.Abbasi. Younis Khan should straighten up his thinking pattern and leadership approach. The weakness of the middle order is a matter of concern. Our team has a history of relying heavily on tailenders. All I can say is, history repeated itself!

  • Hamid on November 11, 2009, 1:30 GMT

    I don't think Yunus is the right choice for captaincy anymore. His on field leadership in the CT and T20WC were worthy of the trust but his recurrent demand for total authority is baffling.A captain is just the captain, leader of the team given to him.His job is to rally the team and bring out the best in everyone, making sure everyone understands his role. His focus on authority seems to be alienating him from the rest of the team. Instead of taking everyone along he seems to be more interested in keeping everyone away( e.g. Afridi axed from tour selection commitee). Bottomline: he has not delivered as a captain and should either be removed or made captain on series by series basis, depending on the result. No one can demand a guaranteed position unless they can guarantee positive result. I wish Yunus would read this blog.

  • km on November 11, 2009, 1:26 GMT

    What is wrong with Pakistan? The guy won the 20-20 world cup for you, give him a break. Already he does not believe in the system and is ready to resign at the drop of a hat, on top of that a pakistani blogger posts such comments which add to the pressure. Its very easy to criticize him for dropping an x,y,z , but look at the toughness of the guy who was brave enough to take the decision to drop yousuf or umar akmal. He is willing to take chances and his approach should be appreciated. Talent and hard work wins matches, but after a point, you need to take your chances and sometimes the decision may not work. Why doesnt Pakistan take this in its stride and move on . Look at the next game, the next tournament, he will do well. One bad game and everybody starts questioning his captaincy and his ability to lead. Shame on you Pakistan

  • Javed Zarif Canada on November 10, 2009, 23:42 GMT

    Kamran I fully agree with you on your take on YK. He need to understand that in order to excercise power like Imran Khan, he need to lead from the front.He should be holding the middle oerder together rather than loosing his wicket after a good start and adding more presure. May be age is telling upon his nerves and reflaxes so why not try Afridi as ODI captain and let a younster have a chance in the middle order. What i don't agree is the thought of changing the openers now. They have done well in two out of three matches and it seems that finally we might have the openers we were looking for. Shoaib Malik does not possess the class of an international player and he should be let to go. Overall Pakistan should really work on their chase. During Miandad days pak won a lot of games while chasing so he must be more closely involved with the game and not the administartion.

  • Tony Bennett on November 10, 2009, 23:19 GMT

    "Tinkers in chief" - exactly! As a big admirer of Pakistan cricketers over the years, I've frequently been astounded by selectorial decisions. The number of (often young) batsmen who come in, make big runs, and then are swiftly jettisoned, is remarkable.

  • Hassan Abbas on November 10, 2009, 21:47 GMT

    to be honest, the flair and the mercurial nature also comes from this undisciplined psyche... either we revamp the whole system... or just take what we get... at least, these world-beaters/worse-than-associates swings are better than the mediocre consistency that we had achieved during shoaib malik's captaincy: we now at least have a chance to win important games (thus the world T20 win and the champions trophy semi-final)

    nasser hussain's comment during the world T20 semi-final hit home (he is by far the most astute commentator i have listened to)... he said, "let's see which pakistan has turned up today"... our team is bi-polar... people might disagree but i'd say its better than being consistently mediocre... given the state of the system, its a miracle that we are not as bad as zimbabwe or kenya

  • Hassan Abbas on November 10, 2009, 21:45 GMT

    collapses have always been a part of the pakistani game... they occur because our players are not mentally as tough as lets say, the Australians... and achieving consistency with such lack of mental toughness leads to mediocrity... consistency in any case is a double-edged sword: it comes at the cost of flair and SA is a prime example of what happens when you become too consistent... yes the NZ bowling wasn't that threatening but like i said, pakistani batsmen lose/win matches in their own heads... they'll take mcGrath and murali apart when in the right frame of mind and succumb to scott styris when distracted...

    i love following this team... but i'm also aware that the problems it faces are age-old problems... and whenever we win, its despite the system... not because of the system... all i'm saying is that it doesn't surprise me when pakistanis are world-beaters one day and worse-than-associates the next day... like younis khan said, its in the psyche of our nation

  • Hassan Abbas on November 10, 2009, 21:43 GMT

    we shouldn't have lost chasing just 212... the top-order batsmen are responsible... the senior batsmen should have been more responsible... but lack of consistency in selecting players meant that the only proper senior batsman was younis khan! and he is terribly out of form... butt is making a comeback... latif is a new comer... shoaib malik and umar akmal were dropped for one match each... yousuf wasn't even playing... razzaq is also making a comeback... i'm not defending any of them: they are still international players and should do the job assigned to them... but we shouldn't ignore reality: confidence and form do matter and we had too many batsmen in our line-up playing for their own sake (comeback or out of form)... conditions were easy, yes... but pakistani batsmen lose matches in their heads, not on the condition of the pitch...

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  • Hassan Abbas on November 10, 2009, 21:43 GMT

    we shouldn't have lost chasing just 212... the top-order batsmen are responsible... the senior batsmen should have been more responsible... but lack of consistency in selecting players meant that the only proper senior batsman was younis khan! and he is terribly out of form... butt is making a comeback... latif is a new comer... shoaib malik and umar akmal were dropped for one match each... yousuf wasn't even playing... razzaq is also making a comeback... i'm not defending any of them: they are still international players and should do the job assigned to them... but we shouldn't ignore reality: confidence and form do matter and we had too many batsmen in our line-up playing for their own sake (comeback or out of form)... conditions were easy, yes... but pakistani batsmen lose matches in their heads, not on the condition of the pitch...

  • Hassan Abbas on November 10, 2009, 21:45 GMT

    collapses have always been a part of the pakistani game... they occur because our players are not mentally as tough as lets say, the Australians... and achieving consistency with such lack of mental toughness leads to mediocrity... consistency in any case is a double-edged sword: it comes at the cost of flair and SA is a prime example of what happens when you become too consistent... yes the NZ bowling wasn't that threatening but like i said, pakistani batsmen lose/win matches in their own heads... they'll take mcGrath and murali apart when in the right frame of mind and succumb to scott styris when distracted...

    i love following this team... but i'm also aware that the problems it faces are age-old problems... and whenever we win, its despite the system... not because of the system... all i'm saying is that it doesn't surprise me when pakistanis are world-beaters one day and worse-than-associates the next day... like younis khan said, its in the psyche of our nation

  • Hassan Abbas on November 10, 2009, 21:47 GMT

    to be honest, the flair and the mercurial nature also comes from this undisciplined psyche... either we revamp the whole system... or just take what we get... at least, these world-beaters/worse-than-associates swings are better than the mediocre consistency that we had achieved during shoaib malik's captaincy: we now at least have a chance to win important games (thus the world T20 win and the champions trophy semi-final)

    nasser hussain's comment during the world T20 semi-final hit home (he is by far the most astute commentator i have listened to)... he said, "let's see which pakistan has turned up today"... our team is bi-polar... people might disagree but i'd say its better than being consistently mediocre... given the state of the system, its a miracle that we are not as bad as zimbabwe or kenya

  • Tony Bennett on November 10, 2009, 23:19 GMT

    "Tinkers in chief" - exactly! As a big admirer of Pakistan cricketers over the years, I've frequently been astounded by selectorial decisions. The number of (often young) batsmen who come in, make big runs, and then are swiftly jettisoned, is remarkable.

  • Javed Zarif Canada on November 10, 2009, 23:42 GMT

    Kamran I fully agree with you on your take on YK. He need to understand that in order to excercise power like Imran Khan, he need to lead from the front.He should be holding the middle oerder together rather than loosing his wicket after a good start and adding more presure. May be age is telling upon his nerves and reflaxes so why not try Afridi as ODI captain and let a younster have a chance in the middle order. What i don't agree is the thought of changing the openers now. They have done well in two out of three matches and it seems that finally we might have the openers we were looking for. Shoaib Malik does not possess the class of an international player and he should be let to go. Overall Pakistan should really work on their chase. During Miandad days pak won a lot of games while chasing so he must be more closely involved with the game and not the administartion.

  • km on November 11, 2009, 1:26 GMT

    What is wrong with Pakistan? The guy won the 20-20 world cup for you, give him a break. Already he does not believe in the system and is ready to resign at the drop of a hat, on top of that a pakistani blogger posts such comments which add to the pressure. Its very easy to criticize him for dropping an x,y,z , but look at the toughness of the guy who was brave enough to take the decision to drop yousuf or umar akmal. He is willing to take chances and his approach should be appreciated. Talent and hard work wins matches, but after a point, you need to take your chances and sometimes the decision may not work. Why doesnt Pakistan take this in its stride and move on . Look at the next game, the next tournament, he will do well. One bad game and everybody starts questioning his captaincy and his ability to lead. Shame on you Pakistan

  • Hamid on November 11, 2009, 1:30 GMT

    I don't think Yunus is the right choice for captaincy anymore. His on field leadership in the CT and T20WC were worthy of the trust but his recurrent demand for total authority is baffling.A captain is just the captain, leader of the team given to him.His job is to rally the team and bring out the best in everyone, making sure everyone understands his role. His focus on authority seems to be alienating him from the rest of the team. Instead of taking everyone along he seems to be more interested in keeping everyone away( e.g. Afridi axed from tour selection commitee). Bottomline: he has not delivered as a captain and should either be removed or made captain on series by series basis, depending on the result. No one can demand a guaranteed position unless they can guarantee positive result. I wish Yunus would read this blog.

  • Mehreen on November 11, 2009, 2:22 GMT

    Well put Mr.Abbasi. Younis Khan should straighten up his thinking pattern and leadership approach. The weakness of the middle order is a matter of concern. Our team has a history of relying heavily on tailenders. All I can say is, history repeated itself!

  • kamran qureshi on November 11, 2009, 3:59 GMT

    What a disappointment.What went ing,Batting,Batting,Batting.Mike Bearley was the only captain in recent times,who could get selected on the captaincy alone.Younus Khan is no Mike Bearley.With so many mistakes during champions league,Younus got lucky with dasti,s fiasco and nobody really analysed his performance both as a captain and batsman.There was no sense in resting Yousuf in 50/50 when you have nobody in the middle order to play anchor role.younus,shoab,afridi must step up and take the responsibility and its criminal to have all these batsmen fail in the same match.Kudos to Aamir for the world record,the only positive for Pakistan.

  • Mudassar Siddiq on November 11, 2009, 4:09 GMT

    I absolutely do not agree that Younas Khan can be a good captain. I always wonder, has anyone noticed his attitudes and the required mental soberness. His insane laughters and ridiculous body language in interviews even after ugliest of performances, outrightly disqulaifies him from the post. Winning or loosing is one thing and the ability to understand the situations at hand and capabilty to foster the strengths is another. Younas clearlry does not have them both.