Australia 2009-10 December 29, 2009

Attitude goes a long way

The first two days were flat from Pakistan, but since that third morning they have competed strongly with Australia, and ultimately that is all their supporters seek
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Pakistan were under the cosh as the likes of Umar Akmal fought to resuscitate a dying innings © Getty Images
 

Test cricket has once again proved why it mesmerises like no other. As Shane Watson edged towards his maiden Test century and Australia's first of the summer, Pakistan tried to squeeze the life out his innings.

Adopting a bowling line wide of off stump and an 8-1 offside field, Pakistan's bowlers reduced Watson to scrambling the ten runs to his hundred, when it should have been a relentless march to seal a formidable innings. In the land of Bodyline, MoYoline was born, the greatest scheme that Mohammad Yousuf has brought to the Test arena.

Indeed, had Abdur Rauf held on at point, Watson would have fallen for 99, Mohammad Aamer would have had his sixth wicket, and MoYoline would have become unforgettable. Nonetheless, the moment that Watson clinched his century was one of those precious moments that only Test cricket can bring.

It would have been harsh for Watson to fall short again and Rauf's act of generosity was perhaps appropriate. Unfortunately, Pakistan's aspiring stock bowler is unlikely ever to be remembered for his bowling, but that drop will be replayed a million times.

Another classic Test match moment had transformed Pakistan's attitude to this match. Umar Akmal, reeling from a blow to the head from a bouncer that didn't really get up, was attempting to wrestle the advantage from Australia's bowlers. Pakistan were under the cosh as their teenagers fought to resuscitate a dying innings.

Up to then Pakistan fans had little to cheer, but in one over Akmal launched an all-out assualt on Peter Siddle, Australia's most aggressive bowler. Three fours and a six showed Pakistan's players what attitude could do, and Pakistan have never looked back.

The first two days were flat from Pakistan, but since that third morning they have competed strongly with Australia, and ultimately that is all their supporters seek. Two days later, Yousuf's team find themselves back in the match with an outside chance of victory. It is definitely an outside chance, and Australia are capable of finishing the match in the first session of the final day.

Pakistan have shown that with the right attitude they can go to Sydney with a couple of team changes and growing confidence. They must maintain this positive approach on the final day and plan for victory. That is their best hope of escaping defeat. Playing for a draw will only lead to failure. To assist them, the MCG wicket is now doing a fair impression of the Gadaffi Stadium. Pakistan have hope and an outside chance.

Can Pakistan's old hand and young buck combine to produce a famous victory?

Follow me on Twitter during the final day: http://twitter.com/KamranAbbasi

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

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • kiramatalishah on January 14, 2010, 9:56 GMT

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  • Thakur Baldev Singh Chauhan on December 31, 2009, 5:32 GMT

    @ Long Live: Any team that has no real openers and M Amir @ 7 and M. Asif @ 8 is doomed to fail with bat at any pitch against any opposition...

  • Qasem on December 31, 2009, 2:23 GMT

    Kamran: Something you'd notice about the commentators and even Oz players is they get nastier when you start competing with them. There have been so many occasions, one that sticks out in my memory is 99 world cup when pakistan veteran bowlers started reverse swinging and Tony Greg started whining in his ususal tone: "Wait a minute why is it swinging for pakistanis when it didnt swing for aussies. Umpires must do something about it". He and co. couldn't stop praising aussie bowlers for their skills with the revere swing during first innings.

  • Syed Jaffery on December 31, 2009, 0:21 GMT

    In my opinion this is the most less talented Australlian side after the second string Australlian side during the Kerry Packer Circus or maybe the Kim Hughes side of early Eighties. Even with the inclusion of out of form Younis Khan and unprdictable Afridi cannot guarantee anyyhing better. Yousuf has passed his prime and Umer Akmal is no Tendulkar or Lara, rest are no hoppers. Australlia's first inning declaration shows how much Ricky Ponting admire Pakistan's batting lineup. Still I believe if somehow they include Afridi, Younis , Gul and Kaneria and they perform better fielding than their is a chance to avoid white wash. Otherwise writing is on the wall for these no hoppers.

  • Imran on December 30, 2009, 22:19 GMT

    Guys parchi baaz players are in our team like Imran Farhat and faisal iqbal this two guys had been given so many chances and we all knw why both has flawed technique esp imran its so killing him to see to open our selection is the biggest enemy no one else..Can any one tell me why razzaq is not in this team he balls around same speed as of abdul rauf and no one doubt is batting ability far better then these batsman playing in this team all crazy politics and parchi thats it...

  • Kamran on December 30, 2009, 21:44 GMT

    Is Abdul Rauf part of the purchii group, how did this guy manage to come in the playing 11 is beyond me. Kamran Sahib, you should write something about the biased commentary done by the commentator in the test match. I know Tony Craig is biased a-hole and he seems to change his tune away from australia. Bill Lawry is another one. But to hear one dimensional views from Ritche benaud is not only surprising but shameful. I know you need to praise Australia great effort but to hear him things like Pakistan would buckle even when they were putting up a fight does not dignify his stature. I tried to look up email address for nine network to send my warmest regard to Tony Greg but did not find it anywhere. If anyone knows please send it to me.

  • mislam on December 30, 2009, 20:58 GMT

    Too much enthuasism when one new bowler bowls few good overs and get few wickets(amir) and one young batsman gets few runs in few matches. It was funny to see how many Pak supporters expected the match may go for Pak team, when the match was lost by the second day. A lead of 198 runs by australia, the most seasoned team against a bunch of very inconsistent players who has hard time to survive the first 2-3 overs when batting. This is the reality.

    I have said 3-0 white wash in my earlier comments, I stand by that, may be the margin will be small. At best you can expect a draw if a pitch is dead and Kaneria can get some turn. But who is going to hold on to the catches? One drop catch at crucial time can be the cause of a lost match. It has happened time and again and I do not see any end to that.

    Good luck in next two games with few new players I hope.

  • nasir raza dar on December 30, 2009, 20:31 GMT

    It is pathetic display of bating on a placid MCG pitch.In my opinion until there is no check & balance you will see same kind of results & until the incompetent people siting at the helm of cricket affairs it is not possible.That should have happened after the fiasco at Dubai when on return captain resigned saying he lost control of his players & it was evident from the strokes our so called senior batsmen played over there just to ditch their captain for their own interest, but nobody bothers to ask players.That same trend continue right till MCG humiliation, can anybody ask Misbah & kamran about their strokes in second innings, in my opinion no as nobody dam care about country everybody see its own interest whether it is chairman of board, managers, coach or players.We need people who know challenges of modern cricket,get rid of these old horses & bring people like Aamir Sohail, 2Ws, Imran khan,Mohsin,Muddsaar the days of Butt,Inti,Qasim gone & 4 GOD sake send Younis & Afridi.

  • Long Live PakiLand! on December 30, 2009, 19:36 GMT

    My team for sydney would be: Afridi Malik Younus Yousuf U Akmal K Akmal M Amir M Asif U Gull D Kaneria S Ajmal

    This is the perfect squad and this would take out australia nicelyThis sqaud shows us that they have 7 bowlers. 4 Spinners and 3 Fast bowlers and potentially 6-7 batsmen. i think this should be the sqaud for next matches and the odi. Please tell me if u agree with me or not. i would like ur opinion.

  • kiramatalishah on January 14, 2010, 9:56 GMT

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  • kiramatalishah on January 14, 2010, 9:54 GMT

    How To Make money with affiliate programs Today. Affiliate marketing is the easier and probably the most effective method to make money from the internet. It is basically, a kind of selling technique where potential buyers from your website are directed to the websites of sellers. For every click, the website owner gets a small commission. www.onlineuniversalwork.com

  • Thakur Baldev Singh Chauhan on December 31, 2009, 5:32 GMT

    @ Long Live: Any team that has no real openers and M Amir @ 7 and M. Asif @ 8 is doomed to fail with bat at any pitch against any opposition...

  • Qasem on December 31, 2009, 2:23 GMT

    Kamran: Something you'd notice about the commentators and even Oz players is they get nastier when you start competing with them. There have been so many occasions, one that sticks out in my memory is 99 world cup when pakistan veteran bowlers started reverse swinging and Tony Greg started whining in his ususal tone: "Wait a minute why is it swinging for pakistanis when it didnt swing for aussies. Umpires must do something about it". He and co. couldn't stop praising aussie bowlers for their skills with the revere swing during first innings.

  • Syed Jaffery on December 31, 2009, 0:21 GMT

    In my opinion this is the most less talented Australlian side after the second string Australlian side during the Kerry Packer Circus or maybe the Kim Hughes side of early Eighties. Even with the inclusion of out of form Younis Khan and unprdictable Afridi cannot guarantee anyyhing better. Yousuf has passed his prime and Umer Akmal is no Tendulkar or Lara, rest are no hoppers. Australlia's first inning declaration shows how much Ricky Ponting admire Pakistan's batting lineup. Still I believe if somehow they include Afridi, Younis , Gul and Kaneria and they perform better fielding than their is a chance to avoid white wash. Otherwise writing is on the wall for these no hoppers.

  • Imran on December 30, 2009, 22:19 GMT

    Guys parchi baaz players are in our team like Imran Farhat and faisal iqbal this two guys had been given so many chances and we all knw why both has flawed technique esp imran its so killing him to see to open our selection is the biggest enemy no one else..Can any one tell me why razzaq is not in this team he balls around same speed as of abdul rauf and no one doubt is batting ability far better then these batsman playing in this team all crazy politics and parchi thats it...

  • Kamran on December 30, 2009, 21:44 GMT

    Is Abdul Rauf part of the purchii group, how did this guy manage to come in the playing 11 is beyond me. Kamran Sahib, you should write something about the biased commentary done by the commentator in the test match. I know Tony Craig is biased a-hole and he seems to change his tune away from australia. Bill Lawry is another one. But to hear one dimensional views from Ritche benaud is not only surprising but shameful. I know you need to praise Australia great effort but to hear him things like Pakistan would buckle even when they were putting up a fight does not dignify his stature. I tried to look up email address for nine network to send my warmest regard to Tony Greg but did not find it anywhere. If anyone knows please send it to me.

  • mislam on December 30, 2009, 20:58 GMT

    Too much enthuasism when one new bowler bowls few good overs and get few wickets(amir) and one young batsman gets few runs in few matches. It was funny to see how many Pak supporters expected the match may go for Pak team, when the match was lost by the second day. A lead of 198 runs by australia, the most seasoned team against a bunch of very inconsistent players who has hard time to survive the first 2-3 overs when batting. This is the reality.

    I have said 3-0 white wash in my earlier comments, I stand by that, may be the margin will be small. At best you can expect a draw if a pitch is dead and Kaneria can get some turn. But who is going to hold on to the catches? One drop catch at crucial time can be the cause of a lost match. It has happened time and again and I do not see any end to that.

    Good luck in next two games with few new players I hope.

  • nasir raza dar on December 30, 2009, 20:31 GMT

    It is pathetic display of bating on a placid MCG pitch.In my opinion until there is no check & balance you will see same kind of results & until the incompetent people siting at the helm of cricket affairs it is not possible.That should have happened after the fiasco at Dubai when on return captain resigned saying he lost control of his players & it was evident from the strokes our so called senior batsmen played over there just to ditch their captain for their own interest, but nobody bothers to ask players.That same trend continue right till MCG humiliation, can anybody ask Misbah & kamran about their strokes in second innings, in my opinion no as nobody dam care about country everybody see its own interest whether it is chairman of board, managers, coach or players.We need people who know challenges of modern cricket,get rid of these old horses & bring people like Aamir Sohail, 2Ws, Imran khan,Mohsin,Muddsaar the days of Butt,Inti,Qasim gone & 4 GOD sake send Younis & Afridi.

  • Long Live PakiLand! on December 30, 2009, 19:36 GMT

    My team for sydney would be: Afridi Malik Younus Yousuf U Akmal K Akmal M Amir M Asif U Gull D Kaneria S Ajmal

    This is the perfect squad and this would take out australia nicelyThis sqaud shows us that they have 7 bowlers. 4 Spinners and 3 Fast bowlers and potentially 6-7 batsmen. i think this should be the sqaud for next matches and the odi. Please tell me if u agree with me or not. i would like ur opinion.

  • khurram on December 30, 2009, 19:23 GMT

    salman butt: cant play incoming delivery even bowled by a cab driver imran farhat: in a habit of giving too many chances even playing in his backyard Faisal Iqbal: need atleast a decade more to prove his hidden talent Yousuf: To young to handle captaincy, to old to use brain Misbah: Most skilled of the lot but consistantly inconsistant. Younis: Can resign from captaincy even while appealing for a catch. Shoib Malick: can play well besides being a cruel politician Umer Akmal: Should be playing in all available batsmen slots cuz of his energy.

  • danish ahmed on December 30, 2009, 18:41 GMT

    i think the captains approch towards the game matters alot i was 90% sure pakistan will be able to pull it off easily there no doubt pakistan has got all the talent they required to be in the top two teams. the only problem they are facing right now is to sort them out in perfect order they are yet make a perfect combination of the best talented bench players one can have. its time for agressive approch we might loose few more matches but we can build a very strong team for upcoming

    a captain should always be agressive yousuf with all due respect is a can batsman but will never have a good captancy approch he is more like inzamam defensive all the time.

    you have all the ingredients to make the best 11 possible you just need to make things in order. find a perfect combination i will again force on fawad inclusion or shoaib malik inclusion in the side as makeshift opener permenently. you have to allow them to set their mind on a specific playing spot fawad is a good prospect

  • Nadeem Mirza on December 30, 2009, 17:07 GMT

    Crying ourt loud, Afridi is one of the best wrist spinners in the world. Even warne rate him dangerous, especially on bouncy pitch of Australia. His yesterdays haul of 4-19 with the ball lifted South Australia to a 29-run win.

    It won't hurt to play him in place of Kaneria, or even a back-up of Kaneria. Plus his presense in the team and body language always helps. The guy solely brought us 20-20 World cup. Now he said he is available to play any form of cricket, if country needs him. So selectors wake up and send him along with Younis to Sydney. Bring back Rauf, and Malik (especially if Malik doesn't wanna ball and open).

  • Naeem moinuddin on December 30, 2009, 16:16 GMT

    Ricky Ponting showed Pakistan not once but twice in this match that they were not good enough to score more than 300-350. In first innings he declared at 454. Would he dare to do same against teams like India,SA or even England?? Again in 2nd innings he chose to give Pakistan target of 422 when Shane Watson was still batting and could have easily stretched the lead. He was damn confident of not only in his bowling attack but also fickle mind set of Pakistani batsmen. Except Yusuf they do not have any quality test batsman who can stand rigours of test cricket. Umar Akmal will be sorted out by all international sides very soon. Pakistan test side can't win matches against quality opponents with one dimensional side(read bowling).consoling ourselves that got this talent and that talent is good for feeling good factor but fact is fact and other teams treat us with not so respect

  • Danish Ahmed on December 30, 2009, 14:52 GMT

    i was shocked and surprise over exclusion of umar gul form first test they really played with a very very nonsense 11. i was wondering why we even have to go with specialist opener when you have a talented bench player you can choose him as a makeshift opener and transform them into a proper one. australia did the same with watson. and in many teams there are makeshift openers.

    i would like to take chances on fawad alam rather than imran farhat. fawad alam provides you extra bit of bowling option plus he is a safe fielder unlike farhat or salman.

    my second test eleven would be fawad,salman,faisal/younis,yousif,misbah,umar,kamran,aamer,gul,asif and kaneria

  • Irfan on December 30, 2009, 14:52 GMT

    Whether they play Ajmal or not but Gul and Kaneria should be in the next side. It's my observation that as Aamir and Asif built up pressure, batsmen got reprieved when the next set of bowlers namely Ajmal and Rauf came into bowl. Although Ajmal impressed but he couldn't keep the pressure up on the batsmen to the point where they are looking to get out. Also, Aamir's is a young and delicate body, management should be frugal in the ways they use him and when ever possible give him rest to catch up. Don't make him a work horse at least not now. Defying expectations, Butt played decent according to current Pakistani openers standards but he should look to improve. Again it's the attitude not the aptitude. They should look to tear them (aussie) up limb to limb (metaphorically speaking) unfortunatley Yusuf doesn't have it in him to be that way. Its not a dig at him but the guy is a gentleman where as here you need to show a bully's mentality.

  • Navi on December 30, 2009, 14:22 GMT

    How can defeat be glorified can be seen from this article? What a shame from 1st day it was known the way Pakistani were playing that they are gonna lose this match. They were looking like feared bunch of lambs thrown in front of Lions. How can one glorify such a shame victory. The Moyoline which u suggested has already been used in Test earlier and nothing new. It shows you either don't rememeber or deliberately don't want to mention. Last time I remember being used by Dhoni as rightly suggested by one gentleman in one of the post.

  • Faisal Wahab on December 30, 2009, 14:11 GMT

    I totally agree with syed Talha naeem that the top 4 batsman are playing for their permanent place in the team, one failure and they are out of the team, this is what happening with this team since 2001. look at katich & watson, these two players are not regular openers of the team, but they have been given lot of confidence to play at this position. watson played as an allrounder in the oneday team, after the exit of symonds he was inducted into the test squad this year. Katich was having lot of problems with his batting technique, he took advise from bobby simpson the former coach & captain, and now look at his performance. Players are nurtured to perform, not given ultimatum that if you fail you will be kicked out of the team. Domestic structure overhauling is required otherwise these results will not change. As for memorabilia Pakistan has lost every test match against aus it has played since 1999-00 series in aus. This is their tenth test defeat in a row which is a record.

  • Pakistanifan on December 30, 2009, 13:36 GMT

    Pakistan team misses one more thing the lack of commitment.They have broken so many hearts due to their no fear attitude.I still think Pakistani team is talented enough to beat this weakened Australian team.These bunch of shameful guys had in the mind IPL3 contract rather than to win for much needed nation.I can bet if they play for IPL3 teams they will play more agressively and attentively than playing for Pakistan.Look at Afridi how he played for South Australia,look at MOYO how he was playing for ICL. Shameless PCB shameless players and sleepy nation which never roar after every loss.

  • R Malik on December 30, 2009, 13:03 GMT

    re Ali: Don't mistake 'reality' for 'positivity'. Ever since Inzi has retired this Pakistan team's chances of chasing anything over 250 have HALVED. Misbah, Farhat, Butt, and Iqbal should all be SHOT. 2-0 test defeat coming up. Bill from Melbourne: We can tell by the way that the Aussie commentators talk about our cricketers and youngsters that they are amazed at how we pick these kids up from the back alleys and throw them into intl cricket. And its nothing compared to the talent that DOESN'T get through or is unfairly stuck in domestic due to nepotism denying it a chance. We like the Aussie team too, although we're not big fans of the whole sledging business... But then who is?... And at least your commentators aren't biased like the Kiwis... Allan Pinchen: Waqar is probably the most loved Pakistani cricketer for non-Pakistanis... The Zimbabwean brothers here in the UK remember him with great fondness. RE Waqas: LMAO!! Killed it! 'UR DAD'.. HAHAHA..

  • MARLO on December 30, 2009, 12:44 GMT

    WE HAVE ONLY BITS AND PIECES PLAYERS, NO ONE ABLE TO PLAY A LONG INNINGS. THIRD CLASS PLAYERS ARE KEPT IN THE TEAM FOR YEARS, THEY GO OUT AND COME IN BUT THE NEW PLAYERS ARE NOT GIVEN CHANCES. FOR THE SECOND TEST, YOUNIS SHOULD BE SENT IN TIME AS THERE IS NO THIRD FAST BOWLER IN PLAYING 11 IF THEY GO IN WITH TWO SPINNERS. FAISAL, MALIK, FARHAT, MISBAH, BUTT, THERE ARE SO MANY OF THESE NON EXISTENT PLAYERS IN THE SQUAD. PERFORMANCE OF RAUF IS A SLAP ON IQBAL QASIMS FACE FOR SELECTING HIM INSTEAD OF THOSE WHO PERFORM IN DOMESTICS. PAKISTAN NEEDS TO SEND SOME 5 OF THEIR BEST YOUNG TALENT TO AUSTRALIAN ACADEMY FOR A 6 MONTHS STAY, SO THAT THEY LEARN THE REAL CRICKET IN YOUNG AGE.

  • nadeem on December 30, 2009, 12:43 GMT

    The Pak team's batting and fielding are pathetic.This is because of the poor system at domestic level which produces technically flawed batsmen and incompetent fielders that are just not good enough to win at the top level against good or in-form teams. Mitchell Johnson has the same batting avg as Salman Butt and Imran farhat isn't a much better batsmen than Hauritz.Changing one or two personnel or any amount of attitude isn't going to fundamentally change anything when one doesn't have talent or skill.If you really care about your team and want it to do well then focus at more deeper issues and challenge the system.but knowing pakistan and it's culture which loves scape-goats in order to deal with it's own failures and incompetence...i expect the people and administration not to fundamentally alter anything.pakistan needed rain and luck to escape with a drawn series against a mediocre new zealand side that was already weakned by injuries.don't expect any such luck in aus.

  • Wajid shah from UAE on December 30, 2009, 11:24 GMT

    what a shameful performance ..

  • H.Malik on December 30, 2009, 11:09 GMT

    Wish Full Thinking on your part and for all those so called Fans who Were hoping against the hope. What hopeless YOYOs can do more than what they did exactly on the last morning ...... Wake up Mr

  • syed talha naeem on December 30, 2009, 9:19 GMT

    How can the pakistan play positively when 4 of their top 6 batsmen(Salman,Imran,Misbah and Faisal) are playing for their permanent place in the team. So whenever they go out to bat they are defensive. Only God knows when will Pak drop these names permanently and have some new players. Going back to the same unsucessful players again n again will make Pak suffer inthe years to come. Unfortunately this has happened in the last 7 or 8 years.

  • vineet on December 30, 2009, 8:31 GMT

    Sir...its a polite and desperate request from this diehaard fan of pakistan cricket that younis khan be send to australia today itself...middle order is looking fragile...if he bats at number 3 it would do world of good to this team....also it is a general perception that has built from failure of imran farhat at opening slot so kamran akmal be sent as opener with salman butt....these two followed by younis khan ,mohd,yousuf,umar akmal,faisal iqbal/misbah then followed by afridi(shahid afridi should be immediately called to join team for sydney test as his bowling would do alot of good to team and as such also team neds a genuine bowling allrounder for test...so afridi at 7,,then aamer,asif,gul/sami and kaneria should make the 11 for sydney test....following should be team for sydney 1.Salman Butt 2.Kamran Akmal 3.Younis Khan 4.Mohd Yousuf 5.Umar Akmal 6.Faisal Iqbal 7.Shahid Afridi 8.Mohd.Aamer 9.Mohd.Sami 10.Danish Kaneria 11.Mohd.Asif hsqbal

  • kangroo00 on December 30, 2009, 8:24 GMT

    thanks to all the pakistan team to spoil our summer of cricket, i mean these pakistani players cant play cricket...they look like some school cricket team.let them play new south wales or victoria team...am sure those guys can defeat them easily...now whole summer we will have top see these guys spoiling our time by playing against us..and we will hv to see them on our tv all summer...CA should start taking some wise decisions. i mean how they think that pak team can be so gud to be invited for summer?? and smbody just told me we will hv to play them again in england in away tour as well??? oh nooo....im going to switch over for ma blu-ray for nxt 2 mnths. bye-bye 9...

  • Burhan Khan on December 30, 2009, 7:50 GMT

    There is no team in pakistan cricket, they are bunch of individuals thats why they are unpredictable as on his day, one can make the exception. Absolutely no planning, I don't know who gave Yousaf's name as captain, I don't think he has a slightest of clue of captainship in the modern age of cricket where technology opens you up entirely. The way he wasted both his review chances in the 2nd inning, that was such a disappointment. In this modern, where all the successful teams are relying fully on technology, we rely on individual talent, which can never beat the accuracy and calculation. Thats why are so behind in pretty much all the games cricket, hockey, sqash etc world has changed those who have changed with it, they got the success, we, well still old formula, same tectics, same results and same lame excuses. We have a coach who used to play 40 years ago and today again, we drop countless catches. Why not play with 8 batsman and 2 bowlers if the others are just fill in the blanks.

  • waseem on December 30, 2009, 6:24 GMT

    Why were all people optimistic of Pakistan win when they saw how they lost newzealand with a target of less than 300,lost to Srilanka with target of 120 odd.I wonder how Younas will help Pakistani team I guess things will go worse so better select some youngster like Fawad or Faisal .Misbah should be replaced by Shoaib Malik as he can be a choice as an offspinner for Sydney wicket Also Abdur Rauf should be replaced by Sami.Pakistan should play attacking cricket in Sydney hopefuly Pakistan can do lot better.

  • Bill from Melbourne on December 30, 2009, 6:03 GMT

    Greetings to all you enthusiastic Pakistan supporters from Oz. Probably poor timing on my part, seeing the test fizzled a bit at the end, but congrats to Pakistan anyway. Most Australians have a bit more affection for Pakistan teams than most visiting teams. We love the way you manage to pluck impressive youngsters from apparently nowhere - Aamir being the latest. Yousef is an impressive human being as well as captain. I was in the crowd years ago and remember how strongly Australians supported Pakistan when they beat our 'old enemy' England at the MCG in the World Cup final. I hope Kaneria is ready for the next test. Then you'll have a classy double spin attack for Sydney. Drop Rauf and stick with the rest. It's too late and too disruptive to team morale to make massive changes. Congrats too to Ponting for his assertive first innings declaration which opened up the match. He certainly had me worried that it gave Pakistan an opportunity -- but I guess that was the very point.

  • rp1106 on December 30, 2009, 5:40 GMT

    Pakistan needs to fix their opening slot. I don't know how many people will agree with the idea of opening with Kamran Akmal because he has the right attitude. He can play an attacking game. All the major teams have one attacking opener like Australia (Watson), India (Sehwag), South Africa (Smith), Sri Lanka (Dilshan).

  • nassid on December 30, 2009, 5:39 GMT

    This Pakistani team will do well to avoid a 3-0 thrashing. We were lucky to leave New Zealand with a drawn series, New Zealand being a poor Test side. Australia are much stronger in all departments than new Zealand, so I would really expect a royal thrashing.

    Pakistan can do nothing if they can't catch a cricket ball. Our fielding has been a problem for decades and we have yet to resolve this. Our opening has now been a problem for nearly 10 years, we have yet to resolve that.

    I am afraid nothing will change in Pakistani cricket. A new captain, new coach, head of PCB will do little since the entire system in the country is flawed.

  • rp1106 on December 30, 2009, 5:36 GMT

    Pakistan needs a lot effort to beat Aussie. Salman Butt said prior to the test match that Ajmal is better bowler then Hauritz (who is better I don't need to say anymore).

  • Mansoor Sadiq on December 30, 2009, 5:13 GMT

    Pakistan lost the test match, I do not know why our selection committee and cricket board is not willing to include Shahid Afridi and Abdul Razaq in test squad. No one can win matched with this kind of bowling attack and specially batting. I wonder about the decision made by cricket board by employing a bowling coach, our batting needs immediate attention and we are hiring a bowling coach.

  • Allan Pinchen on December 30, 2009, 5:02 GMT

    A s an Aussie cricket tragic,I have to admit I have always admired Pakistan`s cricket team,although result went Aus way,you guys have a lot to look forward to with your younger players.I sincerely wish you great fortune in the years to come,because world cricket will always need Pakistan at its best.My deepest sympathy for the troubles in your homeland and I wish Waqar Younis good fortune as a bowling coach [he was the GREATEST].What a bowler,him and Lillee are my 2 all time favorite quicks..just loved that late inswinging yorker of Waqar`s

  • Steve on December 30, 2009, 5:00 GMT

    Many posts in here saying how beatable Australia has become and yet they continue to win. It's no fluke that they can lose many wonderful players and still manage to dish out thrashings. Yes other teams will always compete for a limited time but the structure around Aussie cricket is such that by the time a players makes Test Status he is generally a battle hardenned veteren of our first class system. How many other teams could lose tha likes of Warne, McGrath, Gilchrist, Hayden, Langer, Stuart Clark, Damien Martyn, Symonds and still remain extremely competitive?

    Don't shoot the current Pakistani team they are a wonderful group of tallented young men, shoot the system that promotes young tallented cricketers and throws them into the couldren called Test Cricket and expect them to pull out victories against veterens. Now and again they will be successful but it will take years and plenty of patience before they will be hard enough to play the game to their own tune.

  • Mike on December 30, 2009, 4:49 GMT

    talk about an anti climax - all over in the first over of the morning. so danish in for sydney then and perhaps umar gul ? can't be worse the abdur rauf (well as a catcher at least)..

  • sarfraz durrani on December 30, 2009, 4:47 GMT

    We Pakistanis alwsys rely on our bowling but it just doesn't work all the time. It certainly is good but I think our bowling is still not at its peak yet, i give it a B grade. But our batting and fielding is certainly terrible. I give our batting a C/D grade and our fielding certainly deserves an F grade. By dropping so many catches and missing so many run outs, its like we are playing against 15-16 players vs 11 players. We need to really train our players very hard for fielding and make every player, even the bowlers learn the art of batting. Also, I think we need players like razzaq, rana, and afridi in the test side. Even playing one of these good quality all rounders we can have that edge. These players can certainly make as many runs as some of our good speciality batsmen and take a wicket or two. Anyways whats the point of a speciality batsmen when they are not even making much runs. Just drop the likes of imran farhat and bring on an allrounder, and we will be good.

  • Vinod on December 30, 2009, 4:26 GMT

    Although the Paki team lost it, there were some good performances from the youngsters in the team. They showed some aggression even while going down. Yes, I was talking about Umar Akmal, Mohd. Aamer etc. Hope they will continue to consider their careers seriously. Was disappointed as I wished to see better batting from Kamran.

  • Aamir Jadoon on December 30, 2009, 4:22 GMT

    Well Kamran its a good article but I Don't think that Pakistan can from here on even any team can win the match by bating fourth and chasing a target of 422, I am Pakistani and I am a great supporter of Pakistan cricket, I love Pakistan to win the test matches but I think we should give them a chance, we a have a very busy year coming up where we have to play again Eng, Australia, Srilanka, so we should be patient, but I am also very happy to see Pakistan in a very positive attitude in the second Inngs both with the ball and bat, but I think that Pakistan need some changes, in the Sydney I hope that Younis khan will we able to join the Pakistan team and also Pakistan Management will not do the mistake to select the Sami over the Umar Gul I think Umar gul is the best option in the team with aamir and Aasif and also Kanaria should be fit in the next test for Pakistan, Then it will be a competitive test match win or loos is the part of the game but important is to compete.

  • a on December 30, 2009, 4:21 GMT

    Advice to Pakistan

    They are playing test match in one style batting. Play with straight bat. dnt face the bat at third man at every ball.

    malik and javed used to do during end of career becuase of injury. please dnt copy them.

    please this message to PCD

  • P Subramani on December 30, 2009, 4:16 GMT

    I saw most of the comments and felt sad for all the writers because Australia just beat Pakistan. I had expected a miracle myself in the manner Laxman and Dravid brought about in Calcutta in 2001. Unfortunately, before quarter an hour of play, Umar and Misbah on whom I had placed my expectations were out. That the last seven batsmen added only 81 runs today on a fairly good wicket tells its own story. That Pakistan will have to bring back Younis and Kaneria for Sydney. In place of Rauf and Farhat. They must play 2 spinners there as the ball turns after the third day. Pakistan have done fairly well in terms of the margin of defeat considering that they have hardly got acclimatised and if one forgets that the Australians declared twice in the match. I wish Pakistan better luck for the coming matches.

  • Ray on December 30, 2009, 4:04 GMT

    Told you folks, the first hour was important. Overall Pakistan showed some fight, so that's good. Hopefully they will try and improve from here and not give up in the matches. Was Umar caught? I couldn't tell from the replays coz of the shadows...

  • Ali on December 30, 2009, 4:00 GMT

    Chalo..I would hesitate twice before giving any kudos to MOYO for doing anything original. I can bet it was Waqar teaching the late reverse to young aamir that grabbed five, by the way still averaging 41.50 with lots to prove before posing the ball to the crowd with the ball and UA appealing after the batsman was given out. Attitude needs to be positive to produce winning results. Misbah again failing, I guess he justified his spot for being the EXPERIENCED batsman that he is. I can see this team going back to the individual performances and lack of vision. What can you expect from a bunch of revolters

  • TJ on December 30, 2009, 3:52 GMT

    The "beatable" Aussies (as commented by lot of my pakistani brothers) have COMFORTABLE beaten the Pakistan team by a "small" margin of 170 runs. Yes, indeed Aussie team is not mighty, they failed to win with an Innings as they usually do.

  • blake on December 30, 2009, 3:40 GMT

    Pakistan team selection is mystifying to us Australians.

    Afridi, your best allrounder and really valuable player for last few years is in the country but not in the test squad?

    Umar Gul is not in the team? Form is temporary, class is permanent, tell that to Gul and get him back on the park. I tell you now that an attack with Umar Gul and Mohammad Aamer striking and Mohammad Asif as really good, tight stock bowler who can also get wickets is capable of bowling oz out, one with Rauf to let all pressure off is not.

    If Gul cannot play then get Sami in. Pace has unsettled Australia lately (Broad, Flintoff, Steyn, Roach, Aamer), along with Aamer.

    And please ask Younis to come back.

  • Hariharan on December 30, 2009, 3:38 GMT

    Well there is nothing much to write. Everything is in the open. The result did not surprise anyone. Ponting is not a fool to have declared the first innings at 454/5. He was aware of the Pakistan batting callibre and knew very well that under no circumstances they will score 300. That will give him a hefty lead of 150 plus and a score of 250 would push the victory target for Pakistan over 400 which again is a non reachable score considering their batting. It is somewhat surprising that they managed at least 250+ in the two innings. Yes, Umar Akmal has started well and is continuing the form he showed in Kiwiland. Mohd. Yousuf is as dependable as ever. But what about others. It is a pathetic display overall and for heaven's sake don't start cheering Mohd. Aamer for his performance. Now they will start comparing him with Wasim Akram. Don't let the success go to his head that he will lose everything soon. ALSO PLEASE POST THE LAST COMMENTS FIRST RATHER THAN THE FIRST FIRST.

  • Muhammedh on December 30, 2009, 2:53 GMT

    I had 4 sleepless nights and 1 night am going to sleep today but with bad dreams. Someone need to find out why they are not giving their 100% if not all days atleast 5th day. Yousuf finally left stranded whether to save the test or didn't know with 2 wkts left. I lost all my cool though I am not a Pakistani but very well wishers of the Pak team and a crazy fan still I can't digest the loss where there were many chances to atleast draw, giving a record win, 1-0 in the series against aussies, etc. All my final hopes lost. Are our comments here wasted or Kamran bhai takes them to PCB/Players...nothing much to say other than best of luck for the Sydney test but I have a final words...no matter bring Younis, Afridi and Razack a least favor selectors can do for the country.

  • wizman on December 30, 2009, 2:52 GMT

    It wasn't MoYo or even Dhoni. Michael Vaughan used it in the 2005 Ashes to ensure Aus couldn't make runs and placed 4 fielders on the off-side boundary. It has been a horrible and negative tactic ever since.

  • Merit on December 30, 2009, 2:52 GMT

    This is a time for Misba to take retirement. Asim Kamal should be given proper chance instaed of Misba. Butt, Malik are the burdon on the team. They should out from the team. Best batsman and bowler from Quaid-e-Azam trophy should be given chance in next test.Merit, Merit, Merit

  • M. Khan on December 30, 2009, 2:51 GMT

    Lets just accept the fact that Pakistan's batting, apart from Moyo and Umar, are not up to test standards. They are all bits and pieces players and you cant realistically hope to win against a quality side on their home ground. take Pakistan openers - who'd think that Farhat is an opener? There is a reason that Faisal Iqbal and Misbah remained at the fringes for so long - they are not test material! Also didnt understand the logic of including Rauf in the side, he doesnt look the part - doesnt even seem that he gives his 100% - You would think that a player like him wud be thankful for the chance and put in 150%. Chance should have been given to another promising bowler. Also, why wasnt Kaneria's finger protected during training when it was already injured?

  • Moin on December 30, 2009, 2:43 GMT

    Its no disgrace in losing to Australia. But the pakistani team should learn from mistakes...they have a good bowling attack and need to build on batting. Rather than giving chances to oldies, they can blood more youngsters. And once for all they can stop pestering YK.A team is not about individuals, thats what professional in any field say.

    Fans shud not have great expectations during this rebuilding process...already Pakistan have won T20 WC and its a step in right direction...Pakistani fans shud support them to build a great team.

    As usual PCB tries to spoil things by selecting certain wrong players...

  • ruchit on December 30, 2009, 2:42 GMT

    best chance squandered..And just think Australia declared twice. Some body earlier said Ponting underestimated the capabilities of Pakistani. Guess we was spot on or probably overestimated the batting strength. Even a target of 350 would have proved too tough!

  • well wisher on December 30, 2009, 2:38 GMT

    The only way Pakistan can win is batting first in the test match.That way Australia will end up batting the 4th inning and Pakistani bowlers can attack...

    Otherwise forget it

  • Kool Kat on December 30, 2009, 2:36 GMT

    Shambolic performance. What the hell was Kamran Akmal doing? Did he think it was a T20? Chasing 422 would require one super human performance like the one Brian Lara, VVS Laxman or JP Duminy provided. The only one capable of it in this team is sadly in Pakistan.

  • Shekhar on December 30, 2009, 1:18 GMT

    Pakistan cricket needs a big time overhaul. The way they are playing, it will be a 3-0 result in favor of Australia. Also, pakistan fans need to stop bashing the players for their failures everytime they loose. I hope PCB learns from the NZ and Aus series and improve in future.

  • ruchit on December 30, 2009, 1:07 GMT

    True batting class of Pakistan revealed. Overhyped bunch ! And imagine some Pakistani fans thinking that Umar Akmal could win it for them with Moyo!!

  • Danish Mahmood Qureshi on December 30, 2009, 1:06 GMT

    All those people those who thought that pak players can win this match must be living in fool's paradise not that I am an Australian I am a very patriotic Pakistan who loves his country, but sadly money greedy PCB officials and money greedy players part of present setup don't care about the country and it's pride as we common people do that's why they never bother to worry about do something which would make us proudly prais our players in front of non-pakistanis but rather they are always a reason and source of embarrassement for us pakistani. Misbah has no shame whatsoever after so many failures he has never thought to use some common sence and to apply basic batting and footwork pricipals or poor guy isn't just test cricket material but our stubborn selectors are out to make a test cricketer out him anyhow. As I write this post match is in progress and 5 down and most sadly it is just matter of time that they will be bundeld out for less than 300 hunderd runs. Shame to PCB/players.

  • haroon on December 30, 2009, 1:06 GMT

    Just watched Akmal got out. There was no need for that. Why on earth Akmal was playing attacking shots when it was required of him to defend and try to save the game for Pakistan. Akmal certainly did not use his "Akal" Thats the BIG difference between Pakistan and rest of the cricketing nations. In Pakistan, patients in an unknown quantity. Yousuf at the other end should have had a word with Akmal to refrain from playing flashy shots. What a bunch of nincompoops? out there representing Pakistan?

  • nasir raza dar on December 30, 2009, 0:51 GMT

    May be the tactics applied by Yousaf worked in second innings however the beginning of last day`s play once again expose the bating woes of the team, two wickets in two balls. What we need at the moment is that Afridi & Younis shoulb be brought back not only to strengthen the bating but to add variety in the bowling with Afridi, because chief selector says we have already 16 players in Australia thus we have to think about sending Younis but he forgot to add the 17th non playing person Mr Butt on board expenses, Shame for him. Imran ? Butt ? Younis Yousaf Umer Afridi Kamran Aamir Asif Gul/Sami Kaneria/Sami forget about any other playing eleven

  • Noor on December 29, 2009, 23:49 GMT

    Pakistan! What a joke team? 2 wickets in the first over of the day. Whenever Pakistan are playing one wonders whether there are 11 clowns on the field. Sack Intikhab Alam and Ijaz butt then boot out Misbah,Imran Fart,Abdul Rauf and Saeed Ajmal and bring new fresh faces.

  • Nadeem Mirza on December 29, 2009, 23:46 GMT

    What a great prospect in the form of Akmal and Aamir. Hope they are not wasted. Not sure why can't Fawad Alam be thrown into the mix also. He even as an opener be better than both Butt and Farhat. Both Butt and Farhat has obvious technical flaws, which are being exploited.

    We need fresh blood mixed with the few seniors like Yousuf, Akmal, Afridi, Younis, Kaneria and Asif to show them the ropes.

    On the other note, what a sight to see Bolinger giving a mouthful to Yousuf and he laughed it off twice. What a mature response. What a cool guy Mohd. Yousuf is. This is the kind of the body language we want. Even Inzi would have looked else where. Others would have lost their head and lost wicket.

  • imran khan on December 29, 2009, 23:44 GMT

    Lot has been sadi about UK. No doubt he's a great find but sometimes it feels like he's going after everything not thinking much about consequences. He needs to play with more responsibility and maturity. 99% chances are that Australia will win the test match but in my opinion Pakistan can pull it off but all depends on Misbah, Kamran and Yousuf. Don't forget Misbah's innings that saved our faces. Fielding has been pathetic and it cost us Dunedin test and highly likely that this one too Best of luck Pakistan.

  • Yousuf Zaman on December 29, 2009, 23:42 GMT

    Look what Aamer and Umer are doing. Bring Shahzeb Hasan to open. He helped Karachi Blues to win trophy. He was a success in T20 wc or go back to Taufiq.....

  • Mubashir on December 29, 2009, 23:05 GMT

    Good luck to my pakistan may allah be with you . Inshallah w can thrash australia if yousaf and umer stay till lunch. Dil Dil Pakistan Good luck make as proud boys and thrash them .

  • Ravi on December 29, 2009, 22:56 GMT

    Oflate australia struggled to bowl out the teams in fourth innings. In recently concluded WI test also they struggled with this same bowling attack. So all it makes for a fantastic finish...

  • Abid on December 29, 2009, 22:34 GMT

    @ Rational Indian - your response would make more sense if you had'nt swallowed a dictionary for lunch and a thesauraus for dinner you pompous pretentious indian.

  • SensePakVictory on December 29, 2009, 22:33 GMT

    It's going to be a very interesting last day's play. With the likes of Akmals in line-up, chasing the remaining target will be an easy task given they maintain their cool under pressure. Aussies are going to be all over pak batsmen for first session. If pak batsmen can survive this crucial period, I bet Aussies will be under huge pressure to save the test match which they dominated till now. Let's wait and watch, in whose favor the day and match goes. Good luck to both teams.

  • AZ on December 29, 2009, 22:32 GMT

    I worry about who is protecting Amer from not becoming another Asif or Shoaib? He has gathered so much attention so quickly, unfortunately this attracts the negative influence creators as well (drugs, sex, money, etc - does matter right or wrong, fame & money brings these to you) - I hope someone is looking after him closely.

    Is he from a remote village? Too fast too quick and you can take a fall....

  • Imran on December 29, 2009, 21:50 GMT

    Umar Akmal a new talent can become a famous cricket of Pakistan Future. He can stay at the wicket with his captain till lunch i 100% sure then Pakistan can win the Match easily

  • samhouse on December 29, 2009, 21:43 GMT

    If these two can bat till after lunch and bring the runs required to around 100... we may be in for something special. This is a valiant effort so far...world record chase at the MCG...huge for pakistani cricket.

    Very good to see faisal iqbal play a solid knock. Hopefully he continues this play. He was beaten by a great delivery in the end.

  • AZ on December 29, 2009, 21:31 GMT

    OF his own volition Afridi does not want to play Test. He would rather play the shorter format and make money elsewhere...

  • Nadeem Mirza on December 29, 2009, 21:15 GMT

    Very positive test cricket (from future) by the Aussies! Not like the subcontinental teams. Test teams from that part of the world would have batted two and half days with batsmen shattering all sort of records, boring fans to death. This is only how you could save and enjoy five-days cricket. Aussie's have little advantage going into last day of this test. However, if Yousuf and Umar Akmal could see over the first session without any misadventure, then we will have a game in balance and it could be very entertaining test.

    Farhat needs to be shown door. Technical problems with him and Butt well exposed to the opponents. Butt's dismissal was the action replay of his 1st inning dismissal. Faisal Iqbal batted sensibly, little unlucky to get-out on the ball that came in sharply from the rough. Rest of the batsmen need to concentrate and hang-in there. Only way Pakistan could win this is if they bat out the whole day. But as Mr. Abbasi said play to WIN not to save behind.

  • Kashan Saeed on December 29, 2009, 21:00 GMT

    Finally the Pak team woke up on 3rd day and fought back. Unfortunately they wont win this one, but this should give them lot of confidence. Pakistan should play at least 5 full time bolwers if they want to win down under. Pak batting is weak and adding an extra batsman will not help. A 5th bowler would definitely help, because theaim is to get 20 wickets. In Sydney with 2 spinners (danish and ajmal) and three paces (Aamer, Gul and Asif) they stand a better chance. Someting needs to be done about the opening pair. Neither Farhat or Butt are cut out for opening. In batting opening is the weakest link for Pakistan.

  • Waqas on December 29, 2009, 20:59 GMT

    @ Imran...i undastand wer ur cumin frm, but if none of them players play in test, who else is gona play...UR DAD?? daft twat...ur mum could be opener

  • Dawar on December 29, 2009, 20:52 GMT

    Pakistan will win, inshallah. Good positive approach by team or captain, they are not playing for draw like they did inn last test match against New Zeland. Rain saved us from the clear defeat. We learned from mistake and are trying to win. Keep it up

  • Ahmad Uzair on December 29, 2009, 20:49 GMT

    A coach like shane warne although brilliant he may be will never work in the present pakistani setup unless given all the authority.there r already huge egos in the pakistani team(afridi,younis,malik,yousuf)..if they dont like shane warne they ll just paly poorly in two three series and shane warne will b shown the door..rajhastan royal is a business ,huge money involved so its ruthless ,anyone who dosent play is out,Pakistan cricket is egos,politics,leg pulling ,sifarshis etc etc.Shane warne will never work here.

  • Dawar on December 29, 2009, 20:47 GMT

    Umar Akmal is a best find for this year. I think we need a young blood like Umar Akmal and Mohammad Amir. How many chances we gave to Butt, Misba, Malik, Faisal Iqbal to score one half century. We should have team on performance. From the following names we should select seperate team for Test, One day & T20. Shahzeb Hasan, Khaild Latif, Khurrum Manzoor, Umar Akmal, Asad Shafiq, Shahid Afridi, Naveed Yasin, Yasir Hameed,Yousuf, Younis Khan, Asim Kamal, Fawad Alam, Sarfraz Ahmed, Mohammad Amir, Anwar Ali, Mohammad Asif, Danish Kanerai, Saeed Ajmal, Mohammad Tallah, Tanweer Ahmed. Best bowler and Best batsman of Quaid-e-Azam trophy should be in the team.

  • Rehan on December 29, 2009, 20:44 GMT

    Surely, you don't think the field setting was Yousuf's invention. Give credit where it is due, Dhoni first employed that field against Australia; more MSDline than MoYoline.

  • Imran on December 29, 2009, 20:38 GMT

    Very encouraging,but why didn't they show the belief earlier on. Question,would Australia tolerate players flopping and dropping dollies,no they would be kicked out for a long time.Damian Martyn took ages to establish himself,yet he was a magnificent player,better than the current Aussie lot,bar Ponting(at his peak). Farhat,Butt,Malik out out out. Misbah on trial,Iqbal plays spin ok, but looks like a scared kitten against pace,bounce and left his off stump exposed. Gul needs rest to get his body fit again,Rauf is a joke,Ajaml is odi player only,Asif looked flat,& slow,no one should be certain of their place apart from the young lions.If you keep failing or have poor technique we don't care for a flukey half century(or double ton) get out and plough the fields somewhere.With Gul unfit,Rauf rubbish,why can't we try young Anwar Ali,we saw his class in U19 world cup.What about Mansoor Amjad,why was he not blooded,his domestic team are messing him about too.

  • Salman Fan on December 29, 2009, 20:37 GMT

    Salman shouldnot be drop as I felt his form is coming back Bring Afridi back to test squad instead of Younis and Bring Malik back in place of Faisal.Imran Farhat is good for nothing keep Salman and Afridi under Saeed A coaching how to play new ball.God knows about the future of Pak cricket.Frankly not at good management hand now.

  • Badar on December 29, 2009, 20:31 GMT

    The Pakistanis are to blame themselves for making things hard for themselves. They let the Aussies off the hook in the 1st innings with some listless bowling and shoddy fielding. What a great difference a positive attitude brings can be evident on the field. So long you stay timid and shy away from your opposition, you can't compete at equal terms. Take the fire to the other side; that's the best way of handling a strong team. Like if Imran Farhat could have just atleast played in his T20 style, Pakistan would have notched up another 50 odd runs on the 4th evening, leaving a gettable 200 on the last day providing they just occupy the crease. They must first negate the tough 1st hour and then take things from there. For Sydney, I'd like to see YK, Afridi, Gul and Kaneria all back in the team. Afridi can't be any worse than Farhat as an opener and his bowling and fielding will be a huge factor on that pitch not to mention the energy he'll bring in the team. Please PCB bring Afridi back.

  • ratee on December 29, 2009, 20:18 GMT

    Pakistan has the chance to prove all the critics wrong and put up a fight to win. We should also not forget the two very excellent declarations by Ponting. Maybe he underestimated the capacity of Pakistani batsmen? But nobody can question the sporting declaration that only Austrians can contemplated and actualized here in Melbourne!!

    So this target will just bring the self-respect to Pakistani cricket and give something for us to smile as the hopes were very little from the very beginning of any victory on this tour anyway. I hope the Pakistani batsmen do not miss this challenge as this is a golden opportunity that may never be offered to them on such a good batting wicket against Australia. One of the best teams in the world. Wow this we may never forget ever!!

  • FAISAL on December 29, 2009, 19:58 GMT

    I feel Pak team is almost there but just short of one more quality bowler and May be if we had 2 or 3 more Umar Akmals who could score anywhere between 50-100. I mean 252 with 7 wickets is not a big deal if all batsman bat with the attitude shown by this youngster. Also remember Aamir and Ajmal had over 100 runs last wicket stand recently. Although Australia has the edge but who knows we might see crazy headlines tomorrow :o)

  • AlFromOslo on December 29, 2009, 19:56 GMT

    Hi, nice article. just wanna say one thing about pak bowling.

    I was watching 1st class cricket at pakistani homepage, and there are bowlers with potential than Rauf,for example Moh. Rameez is a gem. So if Umar was struggling, then why put another struggling bowler in side the team like Rauf? Aamir is doing well, and I hope to see new young bowlers in the team. They will of course be a better fielder also.

    cheers, Al

  • ali on December 29, 2009, 19:52 GMT

    re R malik, learn how to think positive...

  • malik on December 29, 2009, 19:33 GMT

    come on pakistan .... losing and winning doesnot matter to us we just want u to fight like tigers inshallah pakistan will conquer downunder,..,,

  • Born2win on December 29, 2009, 19:08 GMT

    Guys-A similar fielding was set by D Lille during his tenure It's not copying someone rather tactics applied at the right time.One shoul praise MoYo rather giving negatIve comments.I admire UA batting approach if he can tear apart Aussie bowling think what would he do against Indian bowling lineup ,which is weakest at present time. God will definitely help Paki and they will win surely.

  • ys on December 29, 2009, 18:50 GMT

    Come on kamran you are better than that. At least acknowledge that - Madho line than MoYoline. Dint be a typical....be objective in your analysis

  • Shane on December 29, 2009, 18:49 GMT

    I am agreed with you gentle man with the thought that MR. WARNE should be our next coach. He is the most aggressive and genius cricket I have ever seen. BRING ON SHANE WARNE AND SEE THE DIFFERENCE

    Good luck Pakistan for the 5th day:) atleast we are fighting. Farhat, Ajmal, Misbah and Rauf should be replaced by Younas, Danish, Afridi/Malik/Razzaq & Gul/Sami

  • Adnan on December 29, 2009, 18:38 GMT

    The ball is close to 50 overs old and it is best time for yusuf and akmal to bat and bat aggressively. I think problem will come with the new ball especially for akmal brothers and misbah. I hope yusuf stays there when the new ball comes along. I have a funny feeling about this chase. I predict a 2 wicket win for Pakistan, and end to australian domination over Pakistan. Pakistan Zindabad

  • dr moiz ali motiwala on December 29, 2009, 18:32 GMT

    in my opinion its hoping against the hope that pak has any chance of winning this contest.New day and u have to start from zero as if u have recently arrived at the crease.But miracle does happen and fortunately pak have akmal brothers and yusuf that can do it for them.It will be a miracle in its own if pak can even save this match because i know very well that aussies will come very hard on pakis tomorrow morning and if everything goes in pakistan's way then umpire billy doctrove is there who has a traditional rivalry with pakistan that i can bet for sure.Nonetheless any positive result,a draw or a win,can only be achieved by playing attacking game and not thinking in terms of playing out the whole day for a tame draw.

  • Saeed Dadabhoy on December 29, 2009, 18:27 GMT

    MoYoline aside, what in the world was Abdur Rauf doing fielding at point??? Even Imran "Sieve" Farhat would have been a better choice. MoYo's field placing may be superb but his personnel deployment leaves much to be desired.

  • Moody on December 29, 2009, 18:25 GMT

    its just like associating dilscoop attribution to dilshan(although that "dilscoop" was invented by another player way long in county cricket". so sorry for mr.dhoni that M.yousuf has snatched that 8-1 fielding attribution with "MoYo line". one message that i want to give to MoYo IX is that Be Positive and NEVER GIVE UP!

  • AM on December 29, 2009, 18:24 GMT

    Here is wishing Pakistan luck in this test and the rest of the series. It is really time for a change in Pakistan's fortunes against Australia. What is it about Australia that Pakistani players have feared so much over the years, especially in Australia? Pakistan's best chance of winning a series in Australia was in the 1978-79 two-test series against a virtual Australian Third Eleven. Pakistan played all its top players in that series including those that had signed up with Kerry Packer, while Australia shunned theirs. The Australian team had been soundly beaten 5-1 by England that summer in the Ashes.

    However it was the depleted Australian team which almost won that series against Pakistan 2-0. Set to win 382 to win in the first test at the MCG, they were 305/3 when they suffered a massive collapse to lose by 71 runs. But they learnt their lesson and easily won the next test against Pakistan's best team at that time to draw that series 1-1.

  • Kashif on December 29, 2009, 18:21 GMT

    Kamran , a very good article written by u again,and i have read every one's comments and even in your article i hav'nt seen any appreciation to the captain of pakistan Muhammad Yousuf , i guess he has done a great job to take off some pressure from his team and enforce it to the aussies, and we can say we have found a better captain in the recent past then the likes of shoaib malik and younis khan in tests,shoaib malik used to be always defensive and younis khan always showed aggressiveness which did'nt worked in every situation, but yousuf is different as he applies the strategy according to the situation. i hope and would like to see the new captain taking pakistan to a new world of success.And people dont read indian's comments,if u read the articles of indian writers it would make every person angry at them as they just support their team,in other sence they think cricket as india's 2nd name and they think cricket is just made for indians ! And good luck pakistan for the 5th day :)

  • freshasis on December 29, 2009, 18:12 GMT

    rational indian...hit the dictionary hard there did we? lolz, he's making a ponint for this match...we know dhoni did it, but he don't play here do he?

  • waseem on December 29, 2009, 18:07 GMT

    I don't think there is any chance for Pakistani team as there is no match winner like Inzi(remember famous chase of 315 against Aussies in Karachi and against Bangladesh also so many ODI's) in the team.Yousaf is world class but he is not a match winner, don't remember any match where he stayed till end and win for Pakistan.

    But At least Pakistan did better job than WI team in first test which ended in 3 days and hopefully Pakistan team will improve in future matches with more positive approach.

    In next match We should play with 2 spinners, idealy it could be Afridi and Ajmal but as Afridi is not there so it should be Ajmal and Kaneria.People are against Ajmal but i still backs hime as Aussies don't have good track record against offspinners and Sydney wicket will favor spinners more than Fast bowlers.So My final 11 for sydney test will be Imran-Salman-Faisal(no Younas plz)-Yousaf-Akmal-Misbah-Kamran-Amir-Asif-Kaneria-Ajmal.

    If kaneria remains unfit then try Sami instead of Gul.

  • Ray on December 29, 2009, 18:07 GMT

    Yes, Dhoni implemented this against Aus last year. And I recall Gooch doing this against Salim Malik (Saleem was a very strong off-side player and Gooch choked his run flow). Faisal has done decently in the two matches he has played (63 vs NZ and 48), is much better than Shoaib Malik (at least he tries and is not into the politics that Malik is - and don't forget the way Malik was catching against NZ). If anything, I'd open with Malik instead of Farhat. Bring in Sami or Gul for Rauf, and Danish for Ajmal. Faisal can stay or make way for Yunus. Good luck to Pakistan - the tough part will be early morning, and then when the new ball is taken. If Pak can survive these two hrs, they can go on.

  • Shane warne for Pak coach ... on December 29, 2009, 18:07 GMT

    Totally irrelevant, out of place and may never ever happen, but lets do this. Lets have Shane Warne as Pak cricket team coach. We arent playing in home any ways, next series in England (test) so lets have him. Look wat he did with Rajashtan Royals and three of our players were in that team. The guy is a cricketing genius ... The best commentator on channel nine, by some hundred country miles Shane Warne ...

  • Wasim on December 29, 2009, 18:03 GMT

    8-1 field is an age old tactic neither Dhoni nor Yousaf invented it many teams have used it in the past. Kamran was only trying to say that Yousaf employed the tactic to curb the flow of runs at the right time and implemented it with perfection.

    The only thing which goes in Pakistan's favor is the nature of pitch, it is still quite easy to bat except for that bowling rough there are no demons in the pitch. Yousaf will have to bat till end only then Pakistan can save or win this match.

  • Rauf on December 29, 2009, 17:57 GMT

    Pakistan has an outside chance of winning this match but I like their positive play in the second innings. Not too many teams can claim to chase 400+ in Australia and live to talk about it. They should play to win this match no matter the outcome. I am sure Pak fans will be happy to see that positive attitude from Pak team for a change.

    To Indian drive-by posters here. Please give it a rest for once. No one is claiming that MoYo "invented" 8-1 off field and neither did Dhoni. It has been used before by others. Credit goes to the captain and the bowlers for using it in their own situation. Did Aamer suddenly "invent" that bowling bouncers to Ponting will result in his wicket? He took note of Gayle's comment and executed it to perfection so he gets 100% credit for learning and executing a plan at age 17.... which BTW not too many 17 year olds can do against Ponting.

  • Mansoor Khandwala on December 29, 2009, 17:49 GMT

    Pakistan do stand a outside chance to score a famous win. Yousuf & Umar has to play out the session & if they do get 90-100 runs it will be really interesting battle from thereon. With little bit of common sense , right attitude and luck Team Pakistan can go up 1-0 .

  • Pintu on December 29, 2009, 17:47 GMT

    Imran Farhat should be dropped from the team (with batting failures and dropped catches!) and so Abdul Rauf (useless body) for Pakistan to have any chance in the remaining tests (Faisla Iqbal's position should be evaluated as well).

  • waqar Aziz on December 29, 2009, 17:34 GMT

    Can pakistan post a historic victory.First session will be precious for both the teams.If pakistan survived First session and make 100 odd runs and pressure will be shifted towards Australian side.umer Akmal's knock is more important.His stay mean runs. Because he gets runs quickly , gets boundries more freely.In fact It's game of patience and luck.i hope and pray to Almighty Allah .may our Country succeed in every depatment of life. AMIN......

  • Farooq Butt on December 29, 2009, 17:30 GMT

    Ladies and Gentleman, it was exactly 10 years ago when Australia needed 210 runs on the last day and they had 5 wickets in hand. Langer and Gilchrist were batting. Now 10 years on Pakistan is in some what similar position with 252 needed and 7 Wickets in hands. If you compare the batsmen same situation one attacking batsman and one sold bat. If aussies can do it Pakistan can do it do. Pakistan had better bowling attack then Australia in hobart. Anyways Good Luck to Pakistan and Inshallah we will win

  • Adnan Khan on December 29, 2009, 17:29 GMT

    Very well written Kamran! Keep it up.. Well, our eastern unkind neighbors are on duty to poke their noses in our affairs. Pakistan gave Reverse Sweep (Mushtaq Mohammed) , Reverse Swing (Sarfraz & Imran) & last but not least Doosra (Saqlian) to cricket. What our eastern neighbors gave is betting & match fixing.

  • NaderAbbas on December 29, 2009, 17:24 GMT

    Most important thing is dat,at last v can see some planning by pak camp.In the ist innings it seemed that their batsmen had no strategy,as if they were playing 4 a draw....Even though it is test cricket,its fact that runs matter at the end,dznt matter how they come by. Today they played well,at least had intions to get runs and that's what which has earned them a chance of keeping the game alive.The only way they can survive is they should play to win this 1,though not ezy.They should go in with the positive frame of mind and play their shots where ever an opportunity arises.Best ov luck Pakistan,go boys!u can do it!make history!!!!

  • Khan on December 29, 2009, 17:22 GMT

    Pakistan does have an outside chance and anything can happen in the game of cricket, thats why we play the game dont we????

    For you "dhoni invented this scheme" readers of this blog, 8-1, or 7-2 are not something that got invented yesterday, it has been implemented by several others in test cricket dating back to the late 80s but again if all you have seen is dhoni's attemp then I dont blame you. He is awsome isnt he??? lol

  • Ehtisham on December 29, 2009, 17:22 GMT

    Game on by God Game on guys. I strongly agree with those who said if Pak bats up to lunch time without losing a wicket then we have more than outside chance of winning. As a Muslim and a true Pakistani, one should not be so negative in one's thoughts. To Danish sb. - 99% of us who commented on Karman’s blog are positive and thinking positively at least about Pakistan chances in the ongoing test match. Sorry to say but you should talk about the present, think about the present and don't talk or think about the past. Also if anyone of us going to comment should not forget the basics of Cricket and the understanding of the game i.e. cricket. I wish like a True Pakistani A historic Win tomorrow, Inshallah. BEST OF LUCK TEAM PAKSITAN 

  • Saf on December 29, 2009, 17:17 GMT

    The only way pakistan can win this game is by playing aggressive cricket and attacking the bowlers and the game can be changed in the first session tomorrow. Score 120 runs or more and Australia will struggle. Come on Umar n Yousuf its about time to get the record straight to Australia n Test cricket. Pakistan can win this n set the record.

  • Shahzad on December 29, 2009, 17:08 GMT

    Best of luck Pakistan, you can make history by chasing this total. Pakistan is playing with 8 players and 3 "safarshis" Farhat, F.Iqal and A.Rauf. So called coach is not a coach but a like of manager whose biggest role is just to keep Shoaib Akhtar away from the team.

  • Muhammad Usama on December 29, 2009, 17:06 GMT

    if this pair(Yousaf n Akmal)Survived 1st hour day Pakistan w'dlikely to in the game n i hope so they gonna win this(INSHALAH) Best of luck for them........................

  • Dr. Hasan on December 29, 2009, 17:01 GMT

    Pakistan do stand a very outside chance, as indicated by many, but its either win or lose, really dont see it drag out to be a draw, 7 wickets or 2.77 runs/over, a draw aint happeining. First session will be crucial and also if it drags out that long the second new ball might also play a role, intersting prospects, Pak could also take a page out of England's book as to how they have almost sealed the second test match after nearly losing the first one. Funny also how some of the fans here want to flame about the MoYo field, do they actually think that Dhoni was the first captain ever to employ that tactic ?? Its probably an age old tact and its not the basic concept of the tact but the manner and way it was used by MoYo that brings him credit. Interestingly though they had nothing to say about the rest of the article, just flamed and left. Good Luck Pakistan team .... you'll sure as hell need it!

  • INDIAN_FAN on December 29, 2009, 17:00 GMT

    Kamran, I like reading your articles, but I am sorry to say that I disagree with your comment in the 2nd para which reads "MoYoline was born, the greatest scheme that Mohammad Yousuf has brought to the Test arena". Infact it was Dhoni who invented it during Ind-Aus series where India hammered Australia 2-0. That 8-1 offside field literally curbed the runs flow and put extra presurre on Aussie in that series. So stop giving it a name called MoYoline which does'nt exist.

  • Ahmad Uzair on December 29, 2009, 16:59 GMT

    First of all id like to say that this was a nice article,it remains a difficult task for pakistan and victory here would perhaps be one of their greatest.May Allah help us. Secondly as numerous posts have pointed out this indeed is dhoni line,u better correct this mistake,otherwise the indian readers here will tear you to pieces;) Thirdly im all for freedom of speech,but i dont like you using the name MOYO for mohammad yousuf for obvious reasons. :)i Hope pakistan cricket gives us another moment to celebrate tomorrow like the 20/20Wc

  • Javed on December 29, 2009, 16:58 GMT

    What a joke; someone wrote that let Umar Akmal wait for Indian bowler........ Come on man..... What indian bowling you are talking about... he can tear a part such Indian attack any time.... Guys... this is cricket so pls don't bring relegion in this.... some one say Pak will win for Islam and some are still calling Youhana instead of Yousaf........ One other comment about Malik..... for God sake he is not even playing for last 2 matches so leave him alone and he is still far better batsman and fielder than Faisal and Misbah..... There is a need of a brave opner though like Omar Akmal in Middle Order and we will surely find one if we keep giving chances to youngsters like Umar.. Saeed is great bowler but I am afraid not for Test Cricket.... we need to focus on him to keep playing him in ODI and T20 as Danish or even Afridi if Danish is not fit will be best suited for test. Someone claims that Yousaf copied Dhoni... what is the big deal in this... at least he is implementing some plans

  • Asim Zuberi on December 29, 2009, 16:56 GMT

    The team is certainly missing a fifth recognized bowler (wether an allrounder or a regular bowler). Six batsmen are good enough to score. I suggest to bring back Shoaib Malik in place of Imran Farhat, Umer Gul in place of Abdur Rauf and Kaneria in place of Faisal Iqbal at Sydney. Retain the rest.

    Our prayers are with the team to pull up an unforgettable victory here at MCG today.

  • sahil on December 29, 2009, 16:54 GMT

    inshah allah pakistan hope's pakistan will win tomorrow and create history....

  • Shafiq on December 29, 2009, 16:51 GMT

    The team might fold before lunch tomorrow but they have proven what spirit and commitment can achieve; why didn’t they play like this from the beginning? Politics and poor team selection have robbed us from really taking this game to the Aussies; what the hell is Rauf doing in this team a blind and one-handed Gul/Kaneria would have done better. Will we pull it off tomorrow; highly unlikely but all the same I wouldn’t back against it happening, that’s the glorious unpredictability of Pakistan cricket.

  • Gulab on December 29, 2009, 16:50 GMT

    There is no doubt in Yousuf experience and greatness as player and his thinking showed advantageous. We all will support this team until it is after name Pakistan although they are throwing Pashtun players like Gul and Younas. I feel our team can easily win from here if they keep on like mature player. Yousuf, Umar and Kamran can score these 252 runs if they play sensible on the last day. Our prayers are with Pakistani team.

  • Zeeshan Siddique on December 29, 2009, 16:43 GMT

    Only problem is that we only have 4 wickets in hand. The last 3 seriously can't bat and the aussies will pepper them with bouncers like the 1st innnings. Rauf looked worse than asif, which is saying something. Ajmal can stick a bit but we basically need the last 4 batsmen to take it past tea.

  • rabbani on December 29, 2009, 16:42 GMT

    Well, well, I am very optimistic for the result of this match in favour of pak team. I am heavily relying on Umar Akmal and super Yousuf....let them bring the smiles on the injured souls of Pakistani at home just recovering from the tragic event in Karachi....finger cross for you guys...Akmal brothers repeat the partnership of NZ series....then we would be there.

  • Hamid on December 29, 2009, 16:40 GMT

    Hats off to Ricky Ponting for breathing life into this Test. Had Aussies gone on to make 600 odd in the first innings, this Test would have been over by now. Great to see the attitude of the youth of Pakistan. Looking forward to the 5th day and the rest of this series will be outstanding cricket.

  • Danish Mahmood Qureshi on December 29, 2009, 16:36 GMT

    Looking at the previous pathetic track record of our batsmen of last two test seris against not so very storng teams i.e Sri lanka with due respect and New Zealand the only outcome of this test match is gonna be an Aussi victory. There is not fighting spirit in any of our batsmen excetp Umar Gul but you cannot expect from one batsman to score 3 to 4 hundred runs all by himself where none of other batsman is even of capable of even stay at the crease for longer than 20 to 30 minutes. Pakistan will be very lucky even if they can draw and spare themselves another humilating defeat and the pak cricket fans and their hardworking bowlers disappointment and agony to see thier hardwork go down the drain through the hands of their incapable,pathetic and dismal opening batsmen and middleorder. I think PCB would be best advised to select 11 bowlers in place of seven or eight batsmen we play and we would have more chanses of winning tests as poor bowlers first have take 20 wickets and score too.

  • Nightwatchman on December 29, 2009, 16:26 GMT

    Shane Warne predicted on day 3 that this Test will end with a cracker of a finish. The maestro was right on the money. The strategy should be to stay positive and score 100 runs a session til Tea.

  • desihungama on December 29, 2009, 16:24 GMT

    The comeback by Pakistan is EPIC.

    We have finally got the bull by its horn. There are flashes of controlled, positive agression. This is exactly what is required in a situation. Win or lose from here on. It's no biggie. They are playing to win and this is all we care as fans. Good job so far.

  • Rohail Khan on December 29, 2009, 16:21 GMT

    I think if Pakistan can play until lunch without loosing a wicket we will definitely have a chance. The first session tomorrow with determine the outcome of the match. I firmly believe that with Younis Khan back we should drop Ajmal for Kaneria,Rauf for Umar Gul(Sami is bloody awful)and Misbah for Fawad Alma(much better fielder and batsman). Imran Farhat needs to go and if he is constantly go and Afridi or Imran Nazir should open with Butt.

  • S M Azmat Shah on December 29, 2009, 16:19 GMT

    Thanks Kamran Sahib for writing this and other similar articles on cricinfo....I was expecting you to write something ..because InshALLAH green Paki flags will flatter across MCG tomorrow.I can see history rewritten tomorrow.Our batters need to be mentally tough in shattering aussies hopes of thrashing Pakistanis yet again.I have to request you something..i.e to write something against certain selections in Pakistan Squad...Who is Abdur Rauf?What special he has got in his armory to be part of Pakistan Side...i can see just one in him....i.e Dropping catches of those batsmen who are on 99 ..Pakistan is famous for producing quality fast bowlers but he has been a real shame.Why don't you write against such selections?There are loads of promising fast bowlers in the country so why are our selectors blind to get them in the side..I was personally impressed with Sohail Khan..Why is he not given proper chance to excel...He paired with Aamir can change Pakistan fortunes...

  • Nauman Rupani on December 29, 2009, 16:12 GMT

    Can someone please teach **BASIC** batting principle to Salman Butt. When the ball is straight(i.e. not moving at all), and will hit off and/or middle stump, you bring your front foot out of the crease, you keep the face of the bat absolutely straight and you drive the ball infront of your pads straight down the ground in the mid-off to mid-on region. If you try to play these balls stuck inside the crease and across to square, you are closing the face of the bat, hence limiting the time and amount of bat that sees the ball and increasing the chance of missing to hit the ball and getting out bowled, lbw or spooning an inside edge off the pad on the leg side. It doesn't matter if he scores 30+ and 40+ in this test, the fundamental flaws will render those 30s, 40s as useless. He is always a subject to get out to a technically wrong shot and he will be subject to it regardless he is playing on 10 or 110 runs (on his lucky day). Twice he got out like that in the same test, thats a shame!!!

  • Farhan on December 29, 2009, 16:12 GMT

    This is difficult as we all know.But records are to be created and broken.They will have to completely forget about the record.Just play as another day.250 runs are not impossible in any means.Just keeping wickets in tact is the point.Choosing right balls to attack is the most important.And when eventually a wicket will fell, the others will have to do the same.Young Umar should be left on his own fate.Who knows, he can be the man this time. All to pray that Yousuf remains till the end, no matter what the situation and score is.All the years of humiliation in performance and attitude should not overwhelm the Pakistan team. Just play everybody's own game. I can see some gladiators receiving applause from huge Colosseum spectators.

  • Gary botha on December 29, 2009, 16:11 GMT

    I'm a South African and follow Pakistani cricket with passion. I am immmesely dissappointed to see the downhill standards in catching. I mean if you are going to drop so many catches and have your openers constantly failing,might as well bring Imran Nazir back.All my mates have watched Nazir play and this man has talent but needs guidance on on his selection.His fielding is also probably the best i have seen in a decade. Also, in the bowling department i was amazed to see Sami being sent to Australia. He has a terrible record and besides pace(which he has lost from what i saw in 2007)he does not have the wicket taking ability. Unfortunately i cannot watch the domestic circuit on Tv in South Africa but surely they are better bowlers than Sami out there. I like Fawad Alam too and he needs to be given a chance instead of Malik and Misbah. Both these guys need to be shown the door permanently. seperatley Gul look sunfit to me.He was averaging over 140kmph in 08 and is now back to 135kmp.

  • maximus on December 29, 2009, 16:08 GMT

    i'd say the match ends early in the second session. wickets will fall, moyo will get lbw, umer will get out trying to smack it outta the mark, misbah will probably invent another way to get out to a bad ball, kami n ammer will hang around for a while but to no avail.

    and i really hope my predictions come wrong and we somehow manage to survive this one

  • Muhammad Zaheer Khan on December 29, 2009, 16:04 GMT

    Mr. Kamran I'm unable to understand your opinion about Pakistani team. Seems like you’re not sure that Pakistan can turn it around with and “outside chance”, or, in your mind, Australia is too big of a team for Pakistan to do the upset against? I know Pakistani team have not been in best of the forms lately specially in the batting department. However, if you're talking about the aggressive attitude by making young U. Akmal an example then let me remind you that Pakistani Electronic media also have to play an important role while Pakistan's troublesome team is touring Australia. Just like when Australia is playing on the field, its media plays an outside innings to not only give confidence to its team, but also help its team build-up an aggressive attitude which keep on bullying other teams until they're all hands up. But I’ve yet to see this aggressive attitude in Pakistan’s media. Can you do anything about it, or lead from the front?

  • Humayun Khan Afridi on December 29, 2009, 15:56 GMT

    Big questions for Pakistan Selection, Why Abudur Rauf? Why not Razzaq, he can ball at the same pace, has more variations in his bowling, and a very decent batter with sound technique, Again why danish kaneria or saeed ajmal at all, why not Afridi. A good spinner, and a good batter on his day , who can change a match all on his own. Put him in a situation like the 5th day of this boxing day test, and let him play 5 overs, you can imagine he can change the whole thing around. Then also notice the pattern of Afridi's performance,i.e. if he doesnt perform in batting , he always performs in bowling, if he doesnt perform in bowling he always performs in batting. For me the ideal pakistan team should be, Nasir jamshed and Misbah openers, Younis one down, Yousaf, Umar Akmal, Kamran Akmal, Razzaq, Afridi, Aamer, Asif and Umar Gul. Sorry no place for safarishi in my 11, no butt, no faisal iqbal, and no imran farhat. The standby players can only be Shoaib and Fawad Alam, who are both spinners.

  • mqi on December 29, 2009, 15:54 GMT

    Pak could not win decades ago on a 5th day by scoring 200 runs against aus with all the wickets in hand. That team was much better.

    If and if again, Yusuf, Mesbah and Akmal can play longer innings, they have some chance. Most important will be how Umar Akaml controls his too much attacking attitude. He can score 20 runs in an over and be out next over. My prediction, if he crosses 70, there is a chance. If pak looses two wickets in the 1st hour, they will loose by about 100 runs. Aus attack will be severe in the morning.

    The most unpredictable team in the world with the most unpredictable management with a poor attitude. No YK, now yes YK. No Afridi, next yes Afridi. Yes Farhat, next match, no farhat. What a circus. Any other team does this circus? No for sure. Let us hope for an exciting finish in this unpredictable game.

  • Faisal Jamali on December 29, 2009, 15:53 GMT

    What the hell are the players doing with their fielding? Misbah and \farhat can neither bat nor take catches. Are we setting a record with drop catches. Misbah and Malik are complete failures and they keep on getting picked!! Misbah was dropped on 22 in the first innings. Why isn't fawad alam been given a chance intstead of Misbah. Faisal Iqbal cannot play on bouncy pitches either .He averaIf somebody could send Imran Nazir to a psychologist to improve his shot selection,he is the most talented after Saaed Anwar. Like afridi though he always gets out trying to constatly pull and getting caught inside the circle.The decision to send Sami is shocking.He has probably the worst record in Test match cricket. Are the selectors asleep in the bowling department.What about the domestic performers,rameez and tanveer Ahmed.Sohail Khan has technical limitations but really rammeez or tanveerahmed should have been sent. Shazaib should be replace farhat if Imran Nazir psychologistlessons prove futile

  • Imran on December 29, 2009, 15:48 GMT

    I hope so man! need a real fight for glory.

  • maxentius on December 29, 2009, 15:47 GMT

    I think if Pakistan survive the first hour, they should be fine. Australia's attack lacks variety and ideas, and Ponting has never been a very imaginative captain. As for the MoYo line, you can find captains using it back in the age of Brearley and Co. Vaughn used it against India around 5 or 6 years ago, as I recall. Good tactic, though, in these circumstances.

  • Tauseef ahmed on December 29, 2009, 15:46 GMT

    yes pakistan can win and they have 40% chance if not 50.i m a true pakistani fan i cant se e them loosing.if they survive 1st session and 2nd new ball they can certainly win.Apart from this pakistan should use this tour for the training of khuramm manzoor and especially fawad aalim.if fawad can learn managing bouncy tracks he ll b a gr8 asset for pakistan.

  • Faisal Akhtar on December 29, 2009, 15:36 GMT

    First of all, what in the world was Abdul Rauf doing at Point?? Come on, we deserve an answer from Mohd. Yousuf there. On the positive side, it is refreshing to see Pakistan fight. I would highly recommend them to continue playing for a win, because playing for a draw will only cause another failure. If I were the coach, I would show my batsmen tapes of Virender Sehwag or any other inspirational innings to help boost confidence. Pakistan is a century or two away from winning this test. WE MUST BELIEVE..

  • Farrukh on December 29, 2009, 15:27 GMT

    Only if there were some good fielders

  • sohaib on December 29, 2009, 15:26 GMT

    Slaam a very entertaining article Kamran bhai you just seem to be improving day upon day. Anyway i was wondering whether pakistan should drop ajmal,rauf, farhat and bring in younis, sami, kaneria for the second test. And they should send up faisla iqbal to open he has very good stance and technique which definetly will help him survive the new ball. and about tomoro inshalla pakistan can win its our biggest oppurtunity in years what a time to do it. im guessing yousuf sees us through with 183 not out and kamran 34 not out. umar out for 80 and misbah 65. what a day we all have tomoro.

  • Jamil on December 29, 2009, 15:22 GMT

    All i would say is this When Australians turn the musaaak on 2maro We gonna have a Paaaaaaaaaaaty if Umar and Yousaf can keeping shakin their bats

  • Nauman Rupani on December 29, 2009, 15:19 GMT

    The 8-1 field was Good stuff.It has previously been done,but for a conservative like Yousuf to employ that was good sign.What it also did is kept Australia in for an extra 8-10 overs without conceeding too many,which helps Pak late on Day 5(for both draw or win). Day 5 needs a plan for every hour,small milestones and a backout strategy.There are no surprises (yet) on this pitch.250 runs in 90 overs is under 3 per over,we are already scoring above that.This pair needs to play out the first session,even if they score slow.The Akmals can explode later in the day if needed.Ideally,if Pakistan should try to find themselves needing 100 runs with 5 wickets after tea.My plan: Session 1,2: 60-80 runs each (thats like 2.5 per over) Hour 5-6 (Post Tea): 120-130 to score in roughly 30 overs.With 5 wkts in hand, we can have a GO!!!If we lose a wkt or 2,we try to draw.

  • Imran Sadiq on December 29, 2009, 15:18 GMT

    Yousef's antics were a disgrace today. Akmal is over-rated. How long before the kid is shrowed in controversy - just like the rest of them. Just wait till he comes across Indian bowlers - he'll be found out very soon.

    BTW - England are doing mighty fine don't you thibk. After a beautiful ashes victory (great scenes i'd like to add), they are giving the number 1 side in the world a beating in their own backyard! Super from the boys....

  • G.Heramba Kumar on December 29, 2009, 15:18 GMT

    Well pakistan has a outside chance of winning .they need either mohmad yousf or umar akmal,to post a century.misbah must see to it tht he plays till d end.

  • behroz on December 29, 2009, 15:12 GMT

    Well i think right now all our prayers should be only for a Pak victory.None of us thought that on the end of Fourth day of this test Pakistan will b equally eyeing on a Victory at MCG and that too a boxing Day Test. WE know we Our players have got enough expertise to do it in right passion but we also know the their inconsistency, their mental strength. Umar and Yousaf will have to stay for at least half of the first session because we know how vulnerable our batting can be if a well settled player gets out, and Aussies can really bring the infamous Panic into our dressing room we have observed over the years. So let us keep our fingers crossed pray, and yes a win will definately matters a lot but a loss with spirit and pride will also be appreciated. GO GO GO Pakistan go.

  • Qarseim Mohammed on December 29, 2009, 15:08 GMT

    Insh. Pakistan will win tomorrow...for Islam if not anything else.

    Aameen.

  • Saqib - Milton ON on December 29, 2009, 15:08 GMT

    I AM STILL IN A SHOCK!!!!!!! the way Rauf dropped Shane Watson on 99 !!! Yohana would have known that he is not a point fielder. Pakistan made a great great plan to trap Watson in 90’s but all of the effort was wasted by one mistake of Youhana to put Rauf on point position. What a waste.

    I guess Pakistan could give Australians a nightmare for declaring the innings too early in each innings. If Pakistan could win this one Pointing and Australia will never recover for the rest of the series. Lets hop for good i am putting my 100$ on Pakistan. I know its next to impossible but......Go Pakistan Go....

  • anser azim on December 29, 2009, 15:07 GMT

    The third umpire review system has gone against PAKISTAN in New Zealand and now in Australia. Ponting still has those two reviews intact and my fear is that it will help them than Pakistan. The first LBW decision was dubious and should have favored Pakistan.

  • Javed on December 29, 2009, 14:57 GMT

    It was really nice to see young guns of Pakistan are taking cricket in their hands. With all due respect to Abdul Rauf career; it is not justice with him to give him chances so late in his career. Selector should hunt for young people instead of looking at old horses to run for them again like I have read some where they are planning to bring Tanveer Ahmad as well who is leading wicket taker this season for domestic season but come on he is more than 32 year old have no future. Taking wickets at domestic circut is fine but building a team for future is what we expect now and this can be achieved only by young player. For heaven sake Captain stop putting your faster bowlers on such a critical point position; have seen all fast bowlers fielding on point during last 4 matches including Aamir, Asid, Umar and now Rauf and they keep droping catches. We can compete any team if we held our chances and just perform little bit in batting as Pakistan bowling at full strenght is more than capable.

  • asif naqvi on December 29, 2009, 14:56 GMT

    Answering abbasi`s last question,yes its quite possible.pre-lunch session on the final day would decide the fate of this match.observing the runs scored on each day,day-1=305,day-2=258,day-3=260,day-4=284 and pakistan needs 252 runs on the final day.if pakistan gets another 90 runs before lunch at the cost of one more wicket,her chances would get a boost of good 20%.lets see if umar akmal can hold his nerves for a while. Analysing pakistani performance from newzealand to the australian tour,i can only comment that the absense of big arrogant names like yunis,akhtar and afridi has combined this young camp under a senior and matured captain and thats what pakistan needed for a long time.

  • mislam on December 29, 2009, 14:55 GMT

    Dr. sb, why do you rite so many blogs that produce almost no result. There is no problem with attitude among pak players. Problem is inconsistency which comes from lack of hard work. How many yrs you have problems with drop catch and poor filed placing. It does not happen to aus,SA,Eng, and srilanka. You have problems with the management, not with the quality of players or their attitude. Why in the world a country which produce some best quality young cricketers fail to produce a pair of openers in 10 years? You do not need to be a rocket scientist to understand that. The simple answer, there is no vision in the management, they just maintain an office with signboard. Same is true with half dozen drop catches in the 1ist innings, the sole reason for this tough situation on the 5th day. The bowlers in the 2nd inngs look different from their actions in the 1st innings. Just see the aus team. Playing with confidence and consistency to win.

    Dull head management learn in a hard way.

  • A on December 29, 2009, 14:54 GMT

    The fact that Dhoni employed this strategy doesn't mean MoYo used the past to make his present move. I doubt he would even be aware of this being already used. That seemed to me a purely instinctive move and I appreciate good instincts. Especially since he has shown no sign of those previously.

  • Asim Khan on December 29, 2009, 14:54 GMT

    Strongly agree with you Kamran, we were far too timid during the first 2 days. Pakistan are at their best when we are aggressive and play with intent, i truly believe we can beat the Aussies we just need to show some intent and belief. I was watching Umar Akmal's assault on Siddle and was truly overwhelmed because it showed the team what is possible with the right attitude. Lets hope we carry this attitude into the remaining tests and really test how good the Aussies are, as for the final day - strange things happen in Cricket!!!

  • Usman Zia on December 29, 2009, 14:52 GMT

    Positive positive positive. Even if we lose this one, no one will mind since atlease they are playing positive. Younis Khan in the team with Umar Gul and Danish Kaneria and I can promise you, Pakistan will be on their way to atleast level this series. This is a golden opportunity even if we lose this one. May Allah help this team.

  • Bilal aftab on December 29, 2009, 14:51 GMT

    Young Akmal played an innings which not only showed teeth to Aussies but also showed the way to Misbah while he batted and also to the teenage sensation who bowled with a potent zip. The same aggression was also evident from the body language of pak team in the last four to five sessions.

  • Umair Haroon on December 29, 2009, 14:49 GMT

    Agreed!! It was perhaps one of the better come backs in test cricket and that's what make test cricket such a beauty to watch. Aamir is a star performer. He was full of confidence in the second innings right from the word go. That spell in the last session of the third day was a great example of what he is capable of. I definately see him going a long way. Not to forget Umar Akmal's inning. He is a treat to watch. As far as the match is concerned, we are in for a very intense last day. I am glad to see that Pakistanis have given Aussies a great fight. Can Pakistan do? Yes, they are capable of pulling the game, what's going to be a world record chase. Lets keep our fingers crossed. I'm going to sit infront of the TV today and watch the game until the last ball is bowled.

  • Aamir on December 29, 2009, 14:48 GMT

    I still expect Pakistan to lose tommorow. We don't have the discipline to bat a whole day on a 5th day wicket. Hopefully with Younis Khan + Gul back soon (not missing Malik) we can be more competitive in the next two. Still expect an Aussie series win.

  • Abid on December 29, 2009, 14:47 GMT

    at least, it seems Pakistan is going to fight and Yousaf has some energy.

  • Yousuf on December 29, 2009, 14:46 GMT

    Sorry, no chance! Sadly Pakistan has a poor history of chasing runs on the 4th innnings. The batting is just too weak and they don't have the character to achieve this very difficult task.

  • sher nawaz on December 29, 2009, 14:46 GMT

    Well ,no doubt that pakistan cricket team is most dangerous and unbelievable team,that can make a day its own against a powerful opponent and also can become flat against weaker opponent.MCG game will all depend on Akmal brothers and Muhammad Yusuf's inning,couple of century partnerships tomorrow will make this match a remarkable one.Misbah will prove in this test that he is capable of snatching victories in crucial times and he has to break this jinx of getting out in disastrous way in crucial moments.for tomorrow ,we all pakistanis wish the best of luck to Pakistan cricket team batting.

  • Nasir on December 29, 2009, 14:41 GMT

    Agree with you Kamran. It's been so refreshing to see the younger pakistanis showing absolutely no respect to the Aussies. Don't get me wrong, Australia have earned all the respect they get and we should try to emulate the way they approach the game but when you play them you have to be in their faces. I don't think I've smiled as much as I did watching Aamer bowl in the afternoon session. What an amazing spell of aggressive fast bowling. Let's hope Umar and Yousuf take it to the Aussies on the 5th day!

  • Kamran Abbasi on December 29, 2009, 14:38 GMT

    I'm not saying Mohammad Yousuf was original in coming up with the strategy of bowling outside off stump. I'm not even saying I agree with it. But it's the one strategy that you can clearly say he has used during his captaincy to make something happen or perhaps not happen, depending on your perspective.

  • Baasim Zaidi on December 29, 2009, 14:38 GMT

    Good points Kamran bhai! This is why I love Pakistan so much. The sheer class sheated in unpredictability. I hope Pakistan win tomorrow! And let's hope south africa do over England (I'm half african!)

  • pkfever on December 29, 2009, 14:34 GMT

    inshallah kamran bhye ..pk will win they have got a few chances but australia is infact in the safe side..but if they play positive can win the test.

  • Sohail on December 29, 2009, 14:34 GMT

    Well said. M Yousaf is probably too old to change his ways; he 'll remain defensive in his attitude. However, tomorrow if he can play the anchor and Akmal brothers can contribute, we might be make it. As Kamran said, it's a good fight that the supporters want. And about Rauf: a hair-band will do him and his team no harm.

  • Zed on December 29, 2009, 14:34 GMT

    Since this morning I have been searching for a write up where the writer feels as positive about a Pakistani victory as I am, but not surprisingly I have failed. Perhaps I am way too optimistic for everyone's liking but then again I am a Pakistani fan.

    I agree that Pakistan have done well compared to the bowling performance they put in on day 1 to bring the game to this situation at the end of day4. They would be wondering might not the game have turned out to be a different one altogether had they held on those catches.

    Although I wouldn't put any money on it I still think that if Pakistan can hold wickets and score at three runs an over in the first session tomorrow, that will surely put a cat amongst the pigeons.

  • Terry on December 29, 2009, 14:34 GMT

    Believe in Pak team they can do it

    GOOD LUCK PAKISTAN !!!!!!!!!

  • Hammad Fayyaz on December 29, 2009, 14:33 GMT

    I agree that going for blocking will lead to demise. We have to go for the kill. And I just dont understand what was rauf doing at point region. I was praying for Watson to get out at 99 (even I had a bet with my friend too :P), but Rauf spilled it all. Hopefully Sami will replace him who is better than him; atleast in fielding

  • Nabeel Ahmed on December 29, 2009, 14:32 GMT

    I think Pakistan can certainly do so if they don't throw their wickets away and play the patience game just like Watson and Johnson did. If they can capitalise at least till the lunch time, Pakistan's chances will certainly liven up. However, with Australian bowling attack and Johnson's and Bowlinger's form with the ball, there is no certainty. But Pakistan middle order has to play a big role! They need to show the kind of strength that was there in times of Younis, Inzi and Yousuf. IF that happens, then Pakistan does stand an outside chance, as you have mentioned. But the problem is that of a big IF! And if you still say that test cricket is boring, you are kidding yourself mate.

  • Asad on December 29, 2009, 14:32 GMT

    I do agree with you Kamran Bhai. Pak must play with winning attitude. If they play for time draw; definitely they will lose. 252 runs with 7 wickets in hand & plenty of time is achievable. Wicket is behaving not too bad, Guys !!! Play for victory..... You can make it ...Just play with positive attitude, confidence. Yeah, offensive is the best defensive...Good Luck!

    Mohammad Asad from USA.

  • Adil Chatha on December 29, 2009, 14:30 GMT

    Yes ofcourse. Yousaf is exceptional batsman and if they can survive first couple of hours then I guess Pakistan have fair chance, Aus on other hand is a great team. In my point of view Yousaf should guide Umer and they both should try to survive first couple of hours and then should make the strategy

  • Anes Azeez on December 29, 2009, 14:28 GMT

    yes i agree with you and i also hope pak will go for trying to win this match and this will give boost to them for other matches in the series.

    Best of Luck

  • Danish Khan on December 29, 2009, 14:28 GMT

    I am backing them! It is definately doable! they need to break 252 in to chunks per session, pace them well and be confident! They have got all day...I shall be praying!

  • Cricket lover on December 29, 2009, 14:27 GMT

    All we are asking that they fight hard and be on Australia's face. If they lose, that is absolutely ok, but fight hard boys!!!

  • Rational Indian on December 29, 2009, 14:27 GMT

    Lol !!! Typical Pakistani sanctimoniousness . Weren't you the one hauling Dhoni over the coals last year for employing an 8-1 field against the Aussies ?? But now if MoYo does it, it becomes replete with phantasmagorical nuances !!! Given your ostensibly apt standards of journalism, I fervently wish for your credibility that your veiled unreasonable vituperation of anything Indian screeches to a halt (am especially referring to earlier articles of yours)

  • Shahid on December 29, 2009, 14:26 GMT

    You are right Sir, Attitude makes a big difference and it really did in the last 1½ days of this match. The only problem I see in it is, that this positive attitude and controlled agression from Pakistan team came as they saw a little hope in this encounter and their approach might be, "we are already out of the game so why not just play your shots without taking any pressure". But now that they are 250 runs behind with 7 wickets in hand, pressure might come to them only to push them back in to their shells. And in a defensive mode it will need them to bat twice to get 250 on the last day. Positive approach can extract big scores from ordinary batters, one can just take Zimbabwean Coventrys making 194 and lot of other examples. Faisal's 48 would have been 17, if not for hitting out

  • Shaukat Ali on December 29, 2009, 14:24 GMT

    Kamran, I totally agree with ur nice article. Pak bowled very well, if they keep the same tempo batting then hope 4 the best and nation will hear a good news by tomorrow. Kamaran there is nothign in the pitch but i m worried about the batters. If they don't repeat the previous mistakes then they will reach at the task. As u said approach should be optimistic and go for runs. First session will b very important by tomorrow if they don't loose wicket then definitely pak will win. best of luck to guys

  • khalil on December 29, 2009, 14:22 GMT

    I don,t know why we people become so biased,when the chips are down.We have made it a political arena. Young blood must be inducted to resuscitate our cricket,for the simple reason that they don,t know politics & are not fearful of their places in the team. Rest it is a club level performance.Look at ENG,no body is sure of his place in the side & you notice their performance against one of the strongest teams in the game today.Sheer merit should be criteria for making to the national team.They should take pride in being part of the team rather than doing leg pulling.YK shouldn,t join the team now,in my opinion.

  • Azam on December 29, 2009, 14:22 GMT

    I think pakistan can win this test if they play well in the first session. As long as umar akmal is there they can win. But (its a big But)if they play out of their skin. They should remember just one over can change the course of the game either way. As for austrailia, they should keep their calm and beleive in them, the rest will follow.

  • mozzam on December 29, 2009, 14:19 GMT

    I predict the test will be decided in the first session. If Pakistan start positively and only lose 1 or 2 wickets, pressure will be right back on Oz. And this Oz team is not that mentally strong as it used to be a couple of seasons ago. But if Pak lose early wickets, there will be no contest for remaining of the day. For the sake of Test Cricket, I pray that this match goes down to the wire no matter who wins. But it is proven once again that this Oz team is not invincible anymore. I hope for an exciting days cricket and I would love to watch Umar to get a 100 as I really like his attitude which was not seen among Pakistani batsmen in the recent past. This guy is going to be the next Miandad in terms of attitude. PCB needs to back him through his early days and nurture him for the future. Aaamer is another find and I think Pakistan's search for the next Wasim is over. I wish both the teams well and let's have a cracking end to Test cricket for 2009.

  • CricketFan on December 29, 2009, 14:17 GMT

    MoYoLine is born?? are u kidding me? This was used by MS Dhoni in Aus tour of India in 2008 in third and fourth tests. He was lambasted that he was killing the tests with negative field settings

  • Javed Zarif Canada on December 29, 2009, 14:13 GMT

    Well written article. Pakistan has suffered a lot in the past due to the defensive approach. As they Say best defence is to attack which umar Akmal displayed with beauty. We also saw that in Misbah's Innings when he decided to attack and stopped worrying about getting out. Pakistan wins or losses not a abad performance by pakistan. Things might have been different if they have not dropped Katich and Watson early on the first innings. Pakistan should go to sydney with basics right. They need to practice fielding the way Australlians do. Sometimes i wounder what these acadamies do in Pakistan. I can digest when a 35 old misses a run out but i cannot understand why an academy trained yougster like Rauf would not look at the ball while taking a sitter in the Gully.

  • Nash Khan, Nottingham on December 29, 2009, 14:12 GMT

    Can Pakistan's old hand and young buck combine to produce a famous victory? In terms of ability, no doubt whatsoever.

    Agree with you in terms of changes. Couple of them. Bring Younus and Afridi in to replace Farhat and Faisal Iqbal. Gul to replace Abd Rauf as well.

    Don't play for win all the time, just give a good fight and win will come itself.

    Mr Abbasi, if you have any source/contacts etc in Pak Cricket, Please make Afridi play Tests with grooming Ahmad Shahzad as potential opener.

    Pewasta reh Shajar se --- Umeed-e-Bahaar rakh.

  • Bilal Saeed on December 29, 2009, 14:11 GMT

    I sincerely hope that they defy the odds and conjour up a nigh impossible victory Godwilling. Woeful fielding again by them, i just do not understand how can a team playing at such level be so precarious. I think this is a new standard set by the pakistanis in terms of "how not to field". Our top order failed yet again, im sorry but i do not think that imran farhat and faisal iqbal are test quality players and only plausible explanation for their selection seems to be, and dare i say it, backing from someone higher up the ranks. Abdur Rauf's shocking bowling somewhat curtailed the similarly odd call-up of M.sami. But given his recent performance in Q-trophy i think he would have or might have been a better choice.

  • aqeel on December 29, 2009, 14:03 GMT

    as said in the article, intent indeed can lift a team, also it can make the opposition do things they otherwise wouldnt. it`s about time we brought back the aggresive attitude of the 80`s and 90`s, thanks to imran and javed. we need to play hard and if the players like umar akmal do play a rash shot every now and then again. we shouldnt mind. i would rather he makes an aggresive 50 than just block for a whole session. also praise for aamer, brings back the momories of uncompromising two w`s .cant wait for more. bring it on pakistan!

  • Tahir on December 29, 2009, 14:01 GMT

    If they fought with their heart, Allah will help them.

  • R Malik on December 29, 2009, 14:00 GMT

    Yeah, this has a been a classic Jekyll and Hyde performance from the Paks. Real vintage stuff. First of all, not sure what the logic was behind playing Abdur Rauf when Gul wasn't exactly in poor form. Average yes, poor most definately not. Nevertheless, despite feeling sorry for Mr Rauf, who has long been a consistent performer on the domestic scene, only to get his chance at the twilight of his career, I think he should be dropped for Gul after this and then duly dropped altogether and lets see Mohammed Rameez/Sohail Khan/ or even Tanveer Ahmed given a chance in his place. I mean based on form, Rameez and Ahmed are shoo-ins are they not? AH PCB'o. Kabhi SAUCH keh kaam na karna! Mr Abbasi: Very disappointed at your level of delusion. There is no chance, I repeat NO CHANCE of Pakistan winning this test match. Even if it was Bangladesh bowling with 5 Syed Rasel's they'd bowl Pakistan out! And a draw is only 10% possible. Pakistan will be LUCKY to draw the series. Umar Akmal = MOSHIACH

  • Muzammil Saeed on December 29, 2009, 13:58 GMT

    Watson had not got his maiden ton if Yousaf had not commited the same mistake, he commited in the New Zealand tour. He placed Umar Gul on point and he did this here too by placing Rauf.Once again... we must look at the situation by dividing it into the parts. One of the part of this whole situation is dedicated to Australia only. GOD.....we have 3 white-washes here and those too, consecutive. This gotta be changed as soon as possible otherwise we are not true chapms.

  • Mohammad Imran Hyder on December 29, 2009, 13:48 GMT

    o yes, there is an outside chance, however, we have witnessed in past that pakistanis somehow managed to bring a miraculous victories out of no were. so hoping the same again. another quick 100 runs without lossing a wicket in first session of the fifth day and the match is on. i can write with authority that ponting will not sleep in peace tonight as he must be well aware of the cricketing habbits pakitanis have in their souls since they have started playing cricket...., four ugly days and then a win notched at fifth day in a session or two OR four brilliant days and still at lossing side at the fifth day. for me atleast, the match is still on and its not pakistan but australian should worry about the nature of pakistani cricket from always.

  • Moin on December 29, 2009, 13:40 GMT

    Kamran,

    The tactic of bowling wide of off stump was used successfully by Dhoni against Aussies in the test series in nagpur.

  • Mabsoos Ahmad on December 29, 2009, 13:38 GMT

    Yes, the old gun and new firecracker can do the job which much awaited. Not to say that they got luck with them. I am sure, they can write history here and win the MCG Test. MoYo is doing right job and playing positive cricket. I think whole dressing room has started thinking positive because Faisal, Salman all played with positive frame of mind. If these two can play positive cricket victory could be in their hand. They stick to the basics, respect the good ball, punish the bad or loose ball, rotate the strike as well. MoYo & UA need to understand that they are the only who can win the match and do not leave unfinish job for other. It should be their thinking that they need to complete the job. Victory from their shot ONLY. However, it indicates that they are playing for win and that is the key. Nothing wrong in the pitch and it is playing very well. Only determination is required with patience. MoYo has patience and UA has talent and sound technique, but they need to be stay POSITIVE

  • farrukh on December 29, 2009, 13:37 GMT

    Hope yusuf and omar curb their instincts to play rash shots.Why Abdur Rauf is in the team? Sifarish at age 31 years?Is Umar Gul a victim of nepotism?

  • Khurram on December 29, 2009, 13:34 GMT

    Indeed, Umar Akmal and Aamir give pakistan a renewed energy. only if they can learn from their mistakes and play the right team and hold on to their catches. The way they took the game to Aussies is just brilliant. Well done guys, continue and finish off strong.

  • Shahzad Arif on December 29, 2009, 13:32 GMT

    A great read Kamran. I completely agree with your comments about the way Pak played first 2 days. I think they had started playing against Aussies as if they were playing against the mighty Aussies of late 90s or early 20s. But now they've realised this Aussie side is beatable at home and they've got that aggression back in the squad. I just hope they play positive cricket tomorrow like they've on day 3 and 4. If Yousaf and Umar can put up another 100 run partnership and one of these two goes on and scores a big hundred, then who knows?

  • MUHAMMAD WAQAS on December 29, 2009, 13:31 GMT

    one can hope so......as long as the current pair remains on the crease......Pakistan will definitely a chance to reach that land mark..

  • Ameya on December 29, 2009, 13:16 GMT

    Come come, that wasn't MoYo's brainwave. Dhoni had employed it first last year against Australia. If I recall correctly, Australia scored less than 200 runs in the entire days play...and the momentum totally shifted. Credit to Yousuf for employing it at the right time...but MoYoline it is not!

  • papa india on December 29, 2009, 12:51 GMT

    best of luck to pakistani team. any thing can happen now. guys like faisal iqbal have done their fair share now any thing can happen.

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • papa india on December 29, 2009, 12:51 GMT

    best of luck to pakistani team. any thing can happen now. guys like faisal iqbal have done their fair share now any thing can happen.

  • Ameya on December 29, 2009, 13:16 GMT

    Come come, that wasn't MoYo's brainwave. Dhoni had employed it first last year against Australia. If I recall correctly, Australia scored less than 200 runs in the entire days play...and the momentum totally shifted. Credit to Yousuf for employing it at the right time...but MoYoline it is not!

  • MUHAMMAD WAQAS on December 29, 2009, 13:31 GMT

    one can hope so......as long as the current pair remains on the crease......Pakistan will definitely a chance to reach that land mark..

  • Shahzad Arif on December 29, 2009, 13:32 GMT

    A great read Kamran. I completely agree with your comments about the way Pak played first 2 days. I think they had started playing against Aussies as if they were playing against the mighty Aussies of late 90s or early 20s. But now they've realised this Aussie side is beatable at home and they've got that aggression back in the squad. I just hope they play positive cricket tomorrow like they've on day 3 and 4. If Yousaf and Umar can put up another 100 run partnership and one of these two goes on and scores a big hundred, then who knows?

  • Khurram on December 29, 2009, 13:34 GMT

    Indeed, Umar Akmal and Aamir give pakistan a renewed energy. only if they can learn from their mistakes and play the right team and hold on to their catches. The way they took the game to Aussies is just brilliant. Well done guys, continue and finish off strong.

  • farrukh on December 29, 2009, 13:37 GMT

    Hope yusuf and omar curb their instincts to play rash shots.Why Abdur Rauf is in the team? Sifarish at age 31 years?Is Umar Gul a victim of nepotism?

  • Mabsoos Ahmad on December 29, 2009, 13:38 GMT

    Yes, the old gun and new firecracker can do the job which much awaited. Not to say that they got luck with them. I am sure, they can write history here and win the MCG Test. MoYo is doing right job and playing positive cricket. I think whole dressing room has started thinking positive because Faisal, Salman all played with positive frame of mind. If these two can play positive cricket victory could be in their hand. They stick to the basics, respect the good ball, punish the bad or loose ball, rotate the strike as well. MoYo & UA need to understand that they are the only who can win the match and do not leave unfinish job for other. It should be their thinking that they need to complete the job. Victory from their shot ONLY. However, it indicates that they are playing for win and that is the key. Nothing wrong in the pitch and it is playing very well. Only determination is required with patience. MoYo has patience and UA has talent and sound technique, but they need to be stay POSITIVE

  • Moin on December 29, 2009, 13:40 GMT

    Kamran,

    The tactic of bowling wide of off stump was used successfully by Dhoni against Aussies in the test series in nagpur.

  • Mohammad Imran Hyder on December 29, 2009, 13:48 GMT

    o yes, there is an outside chance, however, we have witnessed in past that pakistanis somehow managed to bring a miraculous victories out of no were. so hoping the same again. another quick 100 runs without lossing a wicket in first session of the fifth day and the match is on. i can write with authority that ponting will not sleep in peace tonight as he must be well aware of the cricketing habbits pakitanis have in their souls since they have started playing cricket...., four ugly days and then a win notched at fifth day in a session or two OR four brilliant days and still at lossing side at the fifth day. for me atleast, the match is still on and its not pakistan but australian should worry about the nature of pakistani cricket from always.

  • Muzammil Saeed on December 29, 2009, 13:58 GMT

    Watson had not got his maiden ton if Yousaf had not commited the same mistake, he commited in the New Zealand tour. He placed Umar Gul on point and he did this here too by placing Rauf.Once again... we must look at the situation by dividing it into the parts. One of the part of this whole situation is dedicated to Australia only. GOD.....we have 3 white-washes here and those too, consecutive. This gotta be changed as soon as possible otherwise we are not true chapms.