Australia 2009-10 December 30, 2009

Ten lessons from the MCG

The Pakistan team has much to be proud from the performance at the MCG but surely it is are capable of more
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The Pakistan selectors' view that Younis Khan has to prove himself in a domestic match is laughable © AFP
 


Pakistan's defeat in Melbourne was fascinating viewing. Test cricket is tough for Pakistan because of how few matches the team has played since 2006. Pakistan's domestic structure is also poor preparation for away tours. Nonetheless, it would be complacent to excuse the defeat on this basis.

The Pakistan team has much to be proud from the performance at the MCG but surely it is capable of more? Here are the lessons I believe Pakistan cricket should learn from the MCG. Feel free to add yours:

1 Australia remain a formidable team. They may not have the batting strength of old but their pace attack is developing powerfully. Since Pakistan will spend much of the next year playing Ricky Ponting's men, they must develop a strategy to combat Australia's pace attack, especially the left armers against whom Pakistan were particularly poor.

2 In turn, Australia are troubled by pace, something Mohammad Aamer and the West Indies demonstrated. Mohammad Asif has sufficient guile to compensate for his lack of raw pace, but Abdur Rauf doesn't. He generally eased the pressure on the Aussie batsmen. Australia's pace attack is relentless, Pakistan's needs to be the same. That must mean a return for Umar Gul or Mohammad Sami. Waqar Younis should be the best to judge which of the two is in the best form.

3 The pace and bounce of Australian wickets is a considerable help to leg break bowlers. Shane Warne's record speaks for itself, but Mushtaq Ahmed has also enjoyed success in Australia. Saeed Ajmal bowled well at the MCG, however, Pakistan's number one spin bowling option has to be Danish Kaneria. Fourth on the all-time list of Pakistani wicket takers, Danish now has to play a decisive role against the better teams.

4 Aamer is a great find for Pakistan. From the moment he set out in international cricket the young man has shown rare skill and temperament. Knowing that he can dismiss Australia's top order should fill him with confidence but there is only so much one man or boy can do. The other bowlers must share his burden.

5 Despite ridiculous claims by one of Pakistan's selectors, the batsmen failed at the MCG. An Australian tour isn't the place for batsmen seeking to establish themselves, unless they happen to be audacious talents like Umar Akmal. Pakistan's batting order requires players with a track record. When we have a batsman with a Test average of over 50, who can fill the crucial No.3 spot, and who scored a Test triple century earlier this year, why would you hesitate to rush him back? The Pakistan selectors' view that Younis Khan has to prove himself in a domestic match is laughable. The team management have called for him. Why then do Pakistan's selectors act against the best interests of the national team?

6 Imran Farhat scored a fortunate century in New Zealand. The unfortunate consequence is that a stroke of luck has kept him in the team. Pakistan require an opening batsman to partner Salman Butt who has greater experience. The current squad lacks options that Younis Khan's return could have created. The genuine alternatives to Farhat are sitting in Pakistan. But Pakistan must act to improve their prospects by calling upon Kamran Akmal or Shoaib Malik to open the innings.

7 Sydney might require two spinners but Pakistan's tail is too long. Shahid Afridi has become an international class bowler, and why can't he apply his more considered approach to batting in the Test arena? He is in Australia. Surely he would answer the call?

8 Days three and four were good for Pakistan, inspired by the spirit of the teenagers. Can their more senior colleagues learn something from Umar and Aamer? Can Pakistan apply that spirit for five days?

9 Mohammad Yousuf's defensive, risk-averse captaincy has been perplexing. Pakistan have traditionally played their best cricket when they have been combative and attacking. That isn't Yousuf's natural style but he needs to adapt his leadership approach for the sake of his team. To beat Australia you need to slug it out toe to toe. For two and a half days at the MCG Pakistan played with an inferiority complex.

10 Australian can be beaten and Pakistan might have the capability to do it. But they currently have too many weak areas to inspire confidence. Equally, there is no shame in losing to Australia and Pakistan's record in the last decade is dismal. However, this is not the great Australian team of the past two decades. That's why even Mohammad Yousuf's undercooked and muddled Pakistan team will remain a threat. They have to come back hard at the SCG, no holds barred.

Follow me on Twitter while Pakistan are in Australia: http://twitter.com/KamranAbbasi

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

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • ak on January 2, 2010, 11:12 GMT

    2 make our pakistans good team the selectors should give the player chances 2 play like imran nazir he played one game then he got chucked out they should give the openers mor chane 2 play look at india they got good openers and we should try 2 be better then them by giving our openers more chances to play if i pick the team i should pick: test team: 1.khuram manzoor 2.salman butt 3.yunus khan 4.muhammad yusuf 5.umar akmal 6.kamran akmal 7.abdul razzk 8.mohmmad amir 9.mohammad sami 10.saeed ajmal 11.mohd asif

    4 the odi: 1.imran farhat 2.imran nazir 3.yunis khan 4.mohd yusuf 5.shoib malik 6.umar akmal 7.kamran akmal 8.shaid afridi 9.abdul razzk 10. saeed ajmal 11.mohd asif 20/20: 1.imran nazir 2.imran farhat 3.shaid afridi 4.shoib malik 5.umar akmal 6.kamran akmal 7.abdul razzak 8.rana naveed 9.mohd ammer 10.saeed ajmal 11.umar gul they shuld try this team if they want2 win if u want 2 comment abt my decion plss email me at faisal.52hotmail.com

  • muhukumar on January 2, 2010, 11:10 GMT

    First of all Yousuf should not be a captain, he lacks leadership qualities. Younis Khan should immediately be called into the side, which will strengthen their batting also. Imran Farhat and Salman Butt must be discarded. Shahid Afridi and Shoaib Malik should Open, Umar Akmal should come in no.4. Younis Khan is 3, and Yousuf should be 5. Bringing Shahid Afridi, and Malik into the opening slot will Improve the lots of Allround capabilities of the team Moreove one can have additional specialist Batsmen

    My team looks like this:

    Afridi Shoaib Malik Younis Khan Umar Akmal Yousuf Faisal Iqbal/Fawad Alam Kamran Akmal Umar Gul Sami (since Aamer is Injured) Kaneria/Ajmal Asif

  • Adnan on January 2, 2010, 8:14 GMT

    According to mine Yunis should be brought back in Austrailia,Yunis is a world class batsman and he is capable of making a big score in both ODI and Test.He should be brought back in Austrailia as captain cum batsman,in place of Faisal Iqbal and Shoib Malik in place of Imran Farhat

  • Irfan on January 2, 2010, 5:25 GMT

    Enough talk about Pakistan having enormous amounts of raw talent. So what? Big deal! The uncooked material which Pak cricket factory produces is mostly garbage. sifting talent out of this garbage is like finding a needle in a hay stack on a moonless night. Investment in cricket has increased significantly over past ten years; there is more money too, yet we can not put up two batsman who could not lose wickets playing first ten to thirteen overs of an innings! How long do we have to wait for another Saeed Anwar, Aamir Sohail or Rameez? How much longer will it be when fielders like Miandad or Asif will show themselves. We are a nation who lives on the deeds of her heroes and glories of the past. Present soon becomes past and past was all we had and even tomorrow past is all we will have. I am truly ashamed that we haven't found another administrator like air marshal Noor Khan. Don't we have capable, disciplined professionals left in our midst??????? even this piece is about past.

  • A. Shaikh on January 2, 2010, 1:28 GMT

    Ideally, we should have Younis Khan (better batsman) in for Faisal Iqbal, Shahid Afridi (better spinner plus can bat too) for Saeed Ajmal, Gul in for Rauf, and Shoaib Malik/Fawad Alam (can't be worse than him) in for Imran Farhat.

  • Masood Muqtadir on January 2, 2010, 0:18 GMT

    In response to your point # 1, I have the following suggestion: Right handed Pakistani batsmen (including Yousuf) need to adjust their technique playing Johnson and Bollinger. They should stand slightly square on (facing mid on, like Javed Miandad) when facing these two bowlers. Up-right stance (feet parallel to the crease) subject the right handed batsmen to a very awkward angle facing out swinging balls from Johnson and Bollinger. It is like playing across the line, increasing the possibility of edges to keeper and slips. Umar and Misbah’s dismissal in the second innings is a good example. This slight adjustment will be very helpful, I know that for sure, please convey it to Pakistan team if you can.

  • Rahman on January 1, 2010, 22:53 GMT

    It is just a favouritism for some players. Misbah didn;t perform all one year but he is still in team while Fawad Alam score debut century but he now sent home . He just player 2 test matches after that and there are people who scored fifty after number of test matches and say this is due to captain give them confidence wow- scoring fifty is an honour to them . Misbah, imran farhat, Shoib Malik, Salman butt and one i was forget- Faisal Iqbal all these should not be in this team. Instead they should re-call younis, Shahid afridi, Yasir Hameed, Taufeeq umar and asim kamal.

  • Sohail-UK on January 1, 2010, 22:37 GMT

    Hi, Everything said as above I totally agree with. My heart always goes for Pak due to such a talent! i really beleived Pak will pull off the victory as i got up at 11.30pm at night and had plan to watch cricket all night. by 11.50 I was in bed sleeping as the first over decided Pak faith! Start with Batting, Pak performed well when we had all rounders in the team, Wasim Akram, Afridi and razzaq. they can all bowl and bat. surely pak should have included afridi or razzaq! I seriosuly beleive every spinner has to be an all rounder! look at shane warne, kumble, harbajan, abdul qadir. they're all capable batsmen. saqlain got batter with batting but gone. ajmal and kaneria need to pick up their batting. rauf, what was he doing in the team!! fielding? dropping catches in test cricket should be made a crime! and let PCB deduct wages for every drop catches, (watch how Pak catching will improve!) pak needs 5 bowlers i would go for aamir, sami, kaneria, afridi and asif. (u will see the diff)

  • Rash on January 1, 2010, 22:16 GMT

    Butt, Farhat and Iqbal have all played around 30 matches and still their averages are around 30. This is unaccaptable for the top order, it means they have had plenty of oppertunities they are simply not good eonough, debates on techniques, skill and temrament are all academic these guys are simply not upto it! give some once else an oppertunity at least we may stumble across another umar akmal by chance ...

  • Syed Jaffery on January 1, 2010, 21:35 GMT

    We have to accept the fact that Pakistan is not really talented enough at this time to challenge Australlia or other tough sides. It was quite obvious when Ricky Ponting declared in the first inning and after that it was all Australlia. Mind you this Australlian side is even less talented than Kim Hughes side of early eighties. Our batsman just cannot play Test cricket anymore as pointed out by Yousuf. They are too aggressive and crumble easily when the pressure is applied.

  • ak on January 2, 2010, 11:12 GMT

    2 make our pakistans good team the selectors should give the player chances 2 play like imran nazir he played one game then he got chucked out they should give the openers mor chane 2 play look at india they got good openers and we should try 2 be better then them by giving our openers more chances to play if i pick the team i should pick: test team: 1.khuram manzoor 2.salman butt 3.yunus khan 4.muhammad yusuf 5.umar akmal 6.kamran akmal 7.abdul razzk 8.mohmmad amir 9.mohammad sami 10.saeed ajmal 11.mohd asif

    4 the odi: 1.imran farhat 2.imran nazir 3.yunis khan 4.mohd yusuf 5.shoib malik 6.umar akmal 7.kamran akmal 8.shaid afridi 9.abdul razzk 10. saeed ajmal 11.mohd asif 20/20: 1.imran nazir 2.imran farhat 3.shaid afridi 4.shoib malik 5.umar akmal 6.kamran akmal 7.abdul razzak 8.rana naveed 9.mohd ammer 10.saeed ajmal 11.umar gul they shuld try this team if they want2 win if u want 2 comment abt my decion plss email me at faisal.52hotmail.com

  • muhukumar on January 2, 2010, 11:10 GMT

    First of all Yousuf should not be a captain, he lacks leadership qualities. Younis Khan should immediately be called into the side, which will strengthen their batting also. Imran Farhat and Salman Butt must be discarded. Shahid Afridi and Shoaib Malik should Open, Umar Akmal should come in no.4. Younis Khan is 3, and Yousuf should be 5. Bringing Shahid Afridi, and Malik into the opening slot will Improve the lots of Allround capabilities of the team Moreove one can have additional specialist Batsmen

    My team looks like this:

    Afridi Shoaib Malik Younis Khan Umar Akmal Yousuf Faisal Iqbal/Fawad Alam Kamran Akmal Umar Gul Sami (since Aamer is Injured) Kaneria/Ajmal Asif

  • Adnan on January 2, 2010, 8:14 GMT

    According to mine Yunis should be brought back in Austrailia,Yunis is a world class batsman and he is capable of making a big score in both ODI and Test.He should be brought back in Austrailia as captain cum batsman,in place of Faisal Iqbal and Shoib Malik in place of Imran Farhat

  • Irfan on January 2, 2010, 5:25 GMT

    Enough talk about Pakistan having enormous amounts of raw talent. So what? Big deal! The uncooked material which Pak cricket factory produces is mostly garbage. sifting talent out of this garbage is like finding a needle in a hay stack on a moonless night. Investment in cricket has increased significantly over past ten years; there is more money too, yet we can not put up two batsman who could not lose wickets playing first ten to thirteen overs of an innings! How long do we have to wait for another Saeed Anwar, Aamir Sohail or Rameez? How much longer will it be when fielders like Miandad or Asif will show themselves. We are a nation who lives on the deeds of her heroes and glories of the past. Present soon becomes past and past was all we had and even tomorrow past is all we will have. I am truly ashamed that we haven't found another administrator like air marshal Noor Khan. Don't we have capable, disciplined professionals left in our midst??????? even this piece is about past.

  • A. Shaikh on January 2, 2010, 1:28 GMT

    Ideally, we should have Younis Khan (better batsman) in for Faisal Iqbal, Shahid Afridi (better spinner plus can bat too) for Saeed Ajmal, Gul in for Rauf, and Shoaib Malik/Fawad Alam (can't be worse than him) in for Imran Farhat.

  • Masood Muqtadir on January 2, 2010, 0:18 GMT

    In response to your point # 1, I have the following suggestion: Right handed Pakistani batsmen (including Yousuf) need to adjust their technique playing Johnson and Bollinger. They should stand slightly square on (facing mid on, like Javed Miandad) when facing these two bowlers. Up-right stance (feet parallel to the crease) subject the right handed batsmen to a very awkward angle facing out swinging balls from Johnson and Bollinger. It is like playing across the line, increasing the possibility of edges to keeper and slips. Umar and Misbah’s dismissal in the second innings is a good example. This slight adjustment will be very helpful, I know that for sure, please convey it to Pakistan team if you can.

  • Rahman on January 1, 2010, 22:53 GMT

    It is just a favouritism for some players. Misbah didn;t perform all one year but he is still in team while Fawad Alam score debut century but he now sent home . He just player 2 test matches after that and there are people who scored fifty after number of test matches and say this is due to captain give them confidence wow- scoring fifty is an honour to them . Misbah, imran farhat, Shoib Malik, Salman butt and one i was forget- Faisal Iqbal all these should not be in this team. Instead they should re-call younis, Shahid afridi, Yasir Hameed, Taufeeq umar and asim kamal.

  • Sohail-UK on January 1, 2010, 22:37 GMT

    Hi, Everything said as above I totally agree with. My heart always goes for Pak due to such a talent! i really beleived Pak will pull off the victory as i got up at 11.30pm at night and had plan to watch cricket all night. by 11.50 I was in bed sleeping as the first over decided Pak faith! Start with Batting, Pak performed well when we had all rounders in the team, Wasim Akram, Afridi and razzaq. they can all bowl and bat. surely pak should have included afridi or razzaq! I seriosuly beleive every spinner has to be an all rounder! look at shane warne, kumble, harbajan, abdul qadir. they're all capable batsmen. saqlain got batter with batting but gone. ajmal and kaneria need to pick up their batting. rauf, what was he doing in the team!! fielding? dropping catches in test cricket should be made a crime! and let PCB deduct wages for every drop catches, (watch how Pak catching will improve!) pak needs 5 bowlers i would go for aamir, sami, kaneria, afridi and asif. (u will see the diff)

  • Rash on January 1, 2010, 22:16 GMT

    Butt, Farhat and Iqbal have all played around 30 matches and still their averages are around 30. This is unaccaptable for the top order, it means they have had plenty of oppertunities they are simply not good eonough, debates on techniques, skill and temrament are all academic these guys are simply not upto it! give some once else an oppertunity at least we may stumble across another umar akmal by chance ...

  • Syed Jaffery on January 1, 2010, 21:35 GMT

    We have to accept the fact that Pakistan is not really talented enough at this time to challenge Australlia or other tough sides. It was quite obvious when Ricky Ponting declared in the first inning and after that it was all Australlia. Mind you this Australlian side is even less talented than Kim Hughes side of early eighties. Our batsman just cannot play Test cricket anymore as pointed out by Yousuf. They are too aggressive and crumble easily when the pressure is applied.

  • TR on January 1, 2010, 21:26 GMT

    IMHO Yousuf should be aggressive. He's too soft in field placing. Putting Rauf in the point region made no sense, so didn't having no slips, no short leg and cover for the spinners. Ponting had it figured out, having men at these positions creates pressure even with an average spinner like Hauritz. Yousuf completely missed the opportunity when Hauritz was batting in the first innings. Waqar or Intikhab should speak up if they see Yousuf is making these mistakes.

  • noor on January 1, 2010, 20:33 GMT

    Saaed Ajmal is it worth playing him, I rather have extra batsman than play Ajmal. Hauritz took 5 wickets in the same pitch that Ajmal was playing, and not to mention Hauritz scored 75. Ajmal should have sent home instead of Fawad. Fawad at least he can bowl and I'm sure he can do worse than Ajmal. Paki selectors got it wrong again.

  • Muzzamil on January 1, 2010, 18:17 GMT

    I just want to say ... if this team win the SGC Test match you all ppl who comments above .. appreciate the batting balling and fielding. and if they loose the match the team suffers from criticism. Secondly ...Pakistani team are not in practice of test match.. quantity of test series they play in a season is countless. PCB have to fix their test series more as compare to 20/20. third ... I dnt understand Why PCB are killing young talent they have ( Asim Kamal, yasir hameed, Abdul Razzaq, Afridi) in a lineup but they are still introducing inexperienced player in the test cricket.What make Paki team better is to play more test cricket.

  • imran on January 1, 2010, 18:14 GMT

    I to increase the pressure on the board we fans need to agree on core issues instead of having too many contradictory/divergent views.We disagree on who plays/shouldn't play and don't even do our research. Plz guys Abdul Razzaq is a slogger and gets bowled/caught behind timidly when playing outside Pak,his bowling in tests is just awful,no pace,no aggression check his stats,he's neither a decent batsman or bowler just another bits and pieces player. Why the extreme hate towards Younis,look at the farce of the PCB team selection and their stupid politics.They never backed him as captain when players were throwing matches deliberately and revolting,would anyone sane carry on if they were passionate about their job and their co-workers did that and then the supposed management blamed you. What a joke.The current lot deliberately lost against Sri Lanka so that he would be ousted,so blame the right culprit. Lets think deeply,discuss and learn from each other and then bombard the PCB.

  • Karrar on January 1, 2010, 17:50 GMT

    For sydney I would play the following team: (1)Salman Butt (scored in warm up match and got starts in 1st test, looks in good touch) (2)Shoaib Malik (Malik will do a better job than Farhat, even if he plays straight and technically correct Farhat does not have the patience for a long test innings) (3)Faisal Iqbal (I don't think Younis will be back for 2nd test however I rate Faisal Iqbal as he plays postively and has a sound technique, he only got out in the 1st test when he got too adventurous with the spinner) (4)Mohommad Yousuf (5)Umar Akmal (6)Misbah Ul-Haq (Has decent technique and can grind an innings as shown in his 60 odd at MCG, unlucky to have got a really good ball from Johnson) (7) Kamran Akmal (Definitely should not open as he is a free-flowing batsman with a loose technique, is a great player when ball doesnt move around) (8)Mohommad Aamer (9)Umar Gul (Instead of Sami as he has been a consistent performer) (10)Danish Kaneria (11)Mohommad Asif

  • mason on January 1, 2010, 17:06 GMT

    Whenever a player is dropped from the team, he usually becomes a Great in the eyes of some Pak fans a week later, as you see with some who want Malik recalled. He is simply not Test quality-period. kamran Akmal is a good crickter, but he is not an opener, as some people have suggested. His keeping skills still let him down. He cannot be expected to keep for 100+ overs and then face the new ball music from Johnson et al Its sure way of cutting short his test career. As for their fielding i am just speechless. I hope that the coaches are working on this, but players themsleves have to take responsibility too. I just hope that this improves, otherwise they will get thrashed no matter how good bowling is.Frankly i feel sorry for the bowelers who have to get most batsmen out twice.

  • Rashid on January 1, 2010, 17:04 GMT

    Salman ,Yours comments was very funny============== New terminology in cricket:

    1. He did a "Pakistani" thats a fileding error 2. He did a "Inzi" thats a Run Out! 3. He did a "MOYO" thats Run Out but not the comical Inzi one. 4.He did a "Imran Farat" thats hat-trick of dropped catches in the slips. 5.He did a "Shoaib" or "Mibah" thats saving your butt by playing one good innings. 6.He did a "Younis Khan" thats "I RESIGNS" 7. He did a "Faisel Iqbal" thats "Nepotism" for being a nephew of Javed Me&dad. 8. He did an "Intikhab Alam" thats a fit and agile coach 9. He did a "Abdul Rauf" thats mean age does'nt matter you can play for Pakistan at 50. 10. He did an "Ijaz Butt" thats "Resonsiblity without accountability"

    Thats my tens for Pakistan's cricket ================

  • mason on January 1, 2010, 16:55 GMT

    Alot of posters talk about Afridi. He may be a good player in 20-20, but his overall record in test cricket is dismal. He has no application and patience which are essential for test cricket. Besides i thought he has resigned from test cricket so there is not much PCB can do about it. Younis is one of Paks better test cricketers when he puts his mind to it. I would say he has huge attitude problem, and frequently throws his toys out of the pram. He needs to address this. No one is bigger than the game. I believe he asked to be excluded from the NZ/Aus tours due to poor form, yet he could not be bothered to play in the local competition in order to find some sort of form. This shows complete disregard for his own game and for his team, and distinct lack of professionalism. I know Yousuf wants him back in team, but for crying out loud, why blabber on to media when he full well knows that it may not happen straightaway. Why dont these guys think? yousuf has undermined his own position.

  • rahul on January 1, 2010, 16:27 GMT

    the recipe for success in australia is a)good opening pair b)a no nonsense captain c)incisive and penetrative bowling unit and finally d)safe fielders unfortunately only condition c is satisfied by the current pak team (only on paper).

  • M Mahboob Hossain on January 1, 2010, 16:25 GMT

    Agreed with all points, just to add 1 more & that too @ top; PAK must improve massively the % of success for 'Regulation Catch'. In top 7 of test team, hardly u expect to win when u need to get 9/10 batsmen out of top 7 every innings. & I m talking of ctches which could taken 9 out of 10. Why do they laugh after dropping shamelessly? MoYo was slammed to put kwies batting, Gul looked ordinary - after spell 1; but just for that 2 sitter drops, NZ could have gone to lunch @ 62/5. And frustratingly, most of the drops at the start of a session or innings, worse enough to demoralize the bowlers for rest. Had Watto been taken of a dusra straightaway, believe me he would have different figures. Ausi boys have self respect, they value their wicket. If dropped, atmost always that man stays long knowing that his presence is good enough to demoralize.

  • PakiFan on January 1, 2010, 15:47 GMT

    As we write Fawad Alam has been sent back to Pakistan. He, unlike Faisal Iqbal, has a decent average of 42, with every indication of it ratcheting up over the next few games. Don't understand the way Players like Fawad a treated by the Pakistan management. They seem to habe no plan at all for players that are promising but have a rough patch, however brief, after initial signs of promise. There is a real danger that like Asim Kamal we would never see Fawad Play for Pakistan again, when clearly his format is Test Cricket. He is not a power hitter rather a nudger, worker of the ball - and with the kind of mediocrity that stuffs the ranks of Pakistan batting, I wonder how the team management justifies his expulsion, when in the first of the tree test he's played he had scored a hundred. Surely he could coming in for the tried, tested and failed Iqbal, or the lose and lousy Farhat? How on Earth could such a glaring amount of promise be ignored?How could careers be snubbed like that? Shame.

  • Shahzad on January 1, 2010, 15:29 GMT

    The one common and most consistent suggestion in all hundreds of posts, otherwise with different opinions, is inclusion of Shahid Afridi. Most of these people are not just cricket-fans but understand cricket deeply. This is really unfortunate that in our culture or in any 3rd world culture, opinion and feedback of common people has absolutely no value.

  • fizul on January 1, 2010, 15:18 GMT

    'Younis Khan has to prove himself' so says the Pakistan selectors. It's the most ridiculous statement I have heard. Pakistan cricket will never prosper because the same dirty tricks they have in their politics, they are bringing it in their cricket. Younis is amongst the best test batsmen in the world, averaging over 50, made a triple earlier in the year and you want him to go prove himself in domestic cricket. Oh what a shame. One question did Sami prove himself domestically^

  • Usman on January 1, 2010, 13:45 GMT

    I agree with Asif's comment regarding Afridi's strike rate. I would also guarantee that no one in the Australian team would look forward to facing his bowling in any format, Tests included. I can also guarantee he'd take twice as many wickets as Ajmal in Australia. Shame he hasn't played a test since the middle of 2006.

  • shahzad on January 1, 2010, 13:37 GMT

    good sir.i am not good writer as pakistani team are not good speaker, but iam great fan of pak cricket.coming back to point without groming dom level we will seen mcg performance in future.why board dont make fast and grassy pitches because pakistan will play his all cricket forign,as countrey's unfortunate satution.

  • Bentley on January 1, 2010, 13:33 GMT

    Hi,Im an Indian but a hard-core and ardent fan of Pakistan's for over 2 decades. Yes, I know nobody would believe me here.I have been rooting for Pakistan all these years through thick and thin. The sides over the last half decade are a fan's heartbreak. What baffles me is the lack of the will to win,desire to fight it out and come out on top with this Pakistan side. Why are they dropping catches? This Pakistan side makes even ordinary bowlers look like monsters.How else can one explain Pakistan's inability to drub NewZealand 3-0?Im sure India's batters would've won the MCG test quite comfortably.Pakistan dont need any exceptional talent like Sachin or Laxman or Dhoni.Just application of the right technique at the right places would've taken this side places.Someone needs to drive this ONE point into the batsmen's heads.Plus had they one more bowler like Aamer in the side.....the rest can only be imagined cant it?Why are Pak fielders so scared to hold on to a fast-moving cricket ball?

  • ahmad on January 1, 2010, 11:59 GMT

    i think the main problem with pakistan playrs is temperament. They could have made a match out of the first test if: 1. They had someone better to partner Salman Butt..Imran Farhat definitely has no tchnique to even play on Desi wickets..forget Overseas. 2. Gul or Sami played instead of a club bowler RAUF 3. Kamran Akmal had not wasted his wicket in the second innings..he is an amazing talent n can contrubute more than wt he's doing finally, let's all be positive n hope selectors throw the trash off ( Rauf / FARHAT)their team n really work towards the future of pakistan cricket and bring back Yunus khan (he should beahve now liKE a responsible person..not like an emotional kid with no sense of responsibility towards the country)

  • Neutral on January 1, 2010, 10:33 GMT

    Ajmal bowled well? Which batsman did he look like getting out? Was he even able to keep a batsman at one end so that pressure could be applied at the other? The answers are no, no-one and no; Ajmal's a good one day bowler but until he varies his pace better and stops bowling that ridiculously straight line a good one day bowler is all he'll ever be. I don't rate Kaneria that high but he doesn't deserve to have a test back up as poor as Ajmal.

  • Sats PK on January 1, 2010, 9:46 GMT

    If the bowling is strong then why not making it stronger by picking 5 of them. That way the chances of getting Australia for cheaper are better. Anyway having either 6 or 7 batsmen doesn't seem to matter and maybe the batsmen can be put under the spotlight by putting more responsibility. Easier said than done, of course.

  • Niraj on January 1, 2010, 9:26 GMT

    Pakistan is facing a lot of problems during these seasons. They lost Test collapses through the year in Sri Lanka, New Zealand and now Australia. But they are very close to victory in many cases. All these are due to the collapse of batting. So, team management has to take strong decision regarding this. Bowler has done excellent job in every match. Specially Asif, Aamer and Kaneria. But they have struggled with their openers and their No.3 batsmen. Why team management is not going for Kaneria, I could not understand this. He is the good spinner who can spin the ball in the flat track too. He is the best than the Ajmal. Why team management always go through the Ajmal not Kaneria. Kaneria has proved many times that he is the match winning bowler and has done many times for Pakistan. Senior Players especially captain Mohamad Yousuf, Misbah have to play a vital role in the batting.

  • Niraj on January 1, 2010, 9:09 GMT

    Pakistan is facing a lot of problems during these seasons. They lost Test collapses through the year in Sri Lanka, New Zealand and now Australia. But they are very close to victory in many cases. All these are due to the collapse of batting. So, team management has to take strong decision regarding this. Bowler has done excellent job in every match. Specially Asif, Aamer and Kaneria. But they have struggled with their openers and their No.3 batsmen. Why team management is not going for Kaneria, I could not understand this. He is the good spinner who can spin the ball in the flat track too. He is the best than the Ajmal. Why team management always go through the Ajmal not Kaneria. Kaneria has proved many times that he is the match winning bowler and has done many times for Pakistan. Senior Players especially captain Mohamad Yousuf, Misbah have to play a vital role in the batting.

  • sali on January 1, 2010, 8:05 GMT

    Very good point about Imran Farhat and Afridi. I don't know why PCB is not proactive and waits until we completely fail before making the required changes. We need to field the best possible team in the second test. We need YK, Afridi, Kaneria and Sami back in the team. We need Sami's raw pace to support Ameer and fifth bowler like Afridi to take advantage of the second inning spinning track. Let Kamran open the inning with Mr. Butt. I am sure Kamran will do better than Imran. Shoib is not a good choice agsint quality pace attack.

  • Shahil on January 1, 2010, 7:10 GMT

    Its really strange that why yest PCB is not approaching Afridi for second test. yes he has't much experiance in test arena but overall if you look way of his Bowling form then there is no doubt about that he is the greatest spinner after Vettori , Harbhajan ....PCB Should approach him bcoz he is right now in Australia. He played 1st 20-20 in Australia with 4/19 . If Pak wants to fight back then without Afridi its impossible. Afridi has ability to collapse any team in just one session as per his current form. Consider him as Bowler His batting is just Plus point that we cant say anything bcoz it can be destroyed any team at anytime . According to Me Team should be following ... Salman Butt Shoaib Malik Mohammad Yousuf Umar Akmal Misbah Shahid Afridi Kamran Akmal Mohammad Sami (As per current Domestic form) Danish Kaneria Aamir Asif

  • Omar on January 1, 2010, 6:53 GMT

    I think that ajmal is a deffensive option for pakistan. I think we desperately need danish kaneria in the spin department. Other then that yousuf should learn to take responsibility and play long innings. Getting out on 40's and 50's wont do any good to pakistan. I think younis khan should be brought back immediately and imran farhat should be dropped. Faisal Iqbal should be promoted to the top opening with salman butt. My Team For Sydney Test 1.Salman Butt 2.Faisal Iqbal 3.Younis Khan 4.M.Yousuf 5.Umar Akmal 6.MIsbah ul HAq 7.Kamran Akmal 8.Sami 9.Aamir 10.Asif 11.kaneria InshAllah we will comprehensively defeat Australia in the next two test matches.

  • Asif on January 1, 2010, 6:47 GMT

    I totally agree with u that pak should immediately recall younus & afridi for the tests. Below under are some interesting facts which will be hard for the pcb to digest as numbers do not lie. Afridi's bowling strike rate of 64 {gets a wicket every 64 balls} which is better than kaneria 67,ajmal 88,mushtaq ahmed 67,saqlain mushtaq 67,abdul qadir 72,iqbal qasim 75 is more than enough to qualify him for tests as a bowler leave alone his batting & fielding which is a bonus.It is true that he was not given enough bowling by the previous captains but whenever he was given the ball he took wickets at a faster rate than others.

  • Sameer Sohail on January 1, 2010, 6:29 GMT

    "The Pakistan selectors' view that Younis Khan has to prove himself in a domestic match is laughable © AFP"

    I don't think it's laughable because a character like Younis do not even deserve a place in Pakistan's team. Younas ditched our team on several occasions by backing off. Our team is good without him. We should consider bringing Abdul Razzaq back and give Asim Kamal a chance too.

  • Raja Naveed on January 1, 2010, 5:26 GMT

    The worst problem Pakistan is facing is of fielding. When you drop players like Katich and Shane Watson, you should be ready for what happened.If I were a coach, I would give one tennis ball to each palyer and make him stand in front of a wall and keep throwing and catching for atleast one hour. Secondly batting,Imran Farhat has test average of 34, Salman Butt 29 and Faisal Iqbal 27 and are in the team. On the contrary, Toufeeq Umar has an average of 39.5 and Yasir Hameed 37 but they are out of favour as they don,t have their father in law or other close ralative to push them in. Younis having an average of over 50 was mishandled by the management to an extent that he decided to quit.Shoaib Malik is neither a bowler nor a batsman, he is just burden on the team. Bowlers are doing well but they need support from fielders. Sami has been sent to Australia which is mind boggling as he has 80 wickets from 33 tests.Bowlers like Wahab Riaz and Talha should be sent to get exposure and practic

  • Ruchit on January 1, 2010, 5:04 GMT

    It is funny that a lot of fans from Pakistan are calling for reinstating of Afridi in the test squad.He can be if you are playing of flat pitches in sub continent but in Australia he is pretty much useless with the bat. Check his record out there.His bowling is okay but batting is rubbish in those conditions. What Pakistan needs is infusion of Younis Khan and Kamal. Both are good test players. They may not get big hundreds but would hold the fort better than current lot. Also putting up too many expectations on Akmal and Aamir is unfair. They yet have to prove themselves fully on international scene and are still too young. Also don't think that Aaamir can be a genuis like Wasim Akram or Akmal the next Tendulkar!. Both are good and impressive but a far cry from being labelled genuises.Tone down expectations and you would be happier.Putting uneccessary pressure and hopes on these kids is unfair. The seniors have to really put their best put forward if Pakistan has to do better.

  • Dr. Hasan on January 1, 2010, 5:04 GMT

    Despite all these changes I dont see Pak beating Aus, sorry, just doesnt look like happeneing. Reasons: Too pathetic a fielding side, too frail and irresponsible batting and add to that the moronic selectors and Pak sadly is looking at a 2-1 loss in the series ... AT BEST. I hope I am wrong but with the performance in the first test, this looks likely.

  • TR on January 1, 2010, 4:33 GMT

    Let's see how the batsmen faired statistically and who could replace them:

    Imran F./ Match Avg-10.50, Career Avg-34.10 Salman B. / Match Avg-39.00, Career Avg-29.26 Faisal I. / Match Avg-31.50, Career Avg-27.25 Mohammad Y. / Match Avg-41.50, Career Avg-53.94 Umar A. / Match Avg-39.00, Career Avg-57.12 Misbah-ul H. / Match Avg-32.50, Career Avg-35.60 Kamran A. / Match Avg-21.00, Career Avg-34.12

    IN Fawad A. (career avg 41.66) OUT Imran F. Fawad is inexperienced but has patience and techniques to become a good opening batsman.

    IN Younis K. (career avg 50.09) OUT Faisal I. Younis is a solid one-down batsman.

    IN Afridi (career avg 37.40) OUT Misbah. Afridi has developed patience in batting and can swap order with Kamran. We trust his leg-spin bowling. The Afridi factor in the field and in the minds of the opposition.

    Among bowlers at hand, Sami should top the list to replace Abdul Rauf.

    Lastly, Mohammad Y. must leave his down-to-earth personality outside and be an aggressive captain

  • Ash_76 on January 1, 2010, 4:32 GMT

    When Bob Woolmer was alive he use to read nearly all his fans e mails. I was privileged when he responded to one of my e-mails about A Sohail remark about foreign coaches when he was on holiday in Kenya. I was one of many. This showed how much he cared about the Pakistan Fan base and the input that they gave. It also showed that he was not scared of listening and always prepared to accept any weaknesses he may have had. He also highlighted the fans concerns to the board who were made to listen. This is what made him one of the best coaches that ever coached cricket. And for a moment cricket in Pakistan improved. I can honestly put my hand on my heart and say without doubt the current board couldn't care less of what the Pakistan fans thought. I wonder whether they even bother reading some of the articles published on cricinfo let alone the posts that go along. Im not sure how influential you are kamarn but it would be great if you can draw their attention to these posts. Thanks and GL.

  • laeeq ahmad on January 1, 2010, 4:23 GMT

    Sami should give chance quickly play in Second test he won Quaide Azam trophy as a captain in last 3 or 4 days in pakistan, kaneria ,one person not perform in one inniings should delete quickly and take who score in every match look to win pakistan whoever the person play.the last message i read of mnaan so i say now that if it is possible play Gul and sami both, and afridi dont want play tests he concentrate on one day and 20 20.

  • Ash_76 on January 1, 2010, 4:17 GMT

    Kamaran, i agree with what you wrote a few months ago about Ijaz Butt and Co. I think its time that you wrote another article exposing how incompetent the selection committee is and how stuck they are in their tribal ways when it comes to selection.

    What else is required is a new cricket structure that will bring back audiences in numbers that will raise much required revenue. What the board need to do is exploit peoples passion and association with the states in Pakistan. So what you do is keep the existing structure of company cricket but from that pick the best 11 players to represent the state that they play in i.e. Punjab or Sind. We all know how the locals boost about their states so why not get them to compete each other at state level. At the same time you get the old ex players involved, these ex players should be put in charge for selecting the best 11. This way you bring to surface the very best players whom the committee can select from. Half the job done. Its that easy

  • adil on January 1, 2010, 4:10 GMT

    I don't agree with the point 6. having a makeshift opener increases pakistan's problem. imran farhat and salman butt should be given a fair run atleast 1 year. so that they develop into better players and remove their flaws. this would be more beneficial in the future.

  • Ateeq Bajwa on January 1, 2010, 4:06 GMT

    Younis Khan is one of the pakistan great batsmen but how commited is he to just play for pakistan. In past he had refused to lead team couple of time and then left the team he was supposed to take to new heights due to some internal issue in dressing room. I will question his leadership why cant he was able to sort it out. Yes pakistan need him in team right now but why dont we give others to prove what they can do.

    Malik dont have sound technique but he had proved lot of time his worth yes he dropped few catches but his track record shows he is one of Pakistan good fielder and he can also bowl few overs.

    Rauf is decent bowler but he dont have cutting edge or class, Asif with pace can only troble batsmen with new bowl in last test he bowled few yorker and Aussies played them with ease.

    Drop Farhat and Rauf replace them with Malik and Sami. Sami have that extra pace and he always tried to pitch ball up .

  • Usman on January 1, 2010, 4:06 GMT

    "Travelling from Karachi to Sydney is a 20-hour journey. Etihad has a flight leaving Karachi at 5.25am tomorrow, arriving in Sydney at 7.20am on Sunday. Too easy. Younis would even have time for a coffee before the toss."

    http://www.smh.com.au/sport/cricket/dithering-paks-leave-younis-in-the-lurch-20091231-lkx1.html

  • MARLO on January 1, 2010, 4:01 GMT

    HOW COMPETENT ARE OUR SELECTORS AND MR. IJAZ BUTT? The team you chose in first place is laughable. No allrounder, most of the non performing players, and full of nephews and son in laws. Then you send Misbah because Yousef asks for him, Yousef asks for Sami you send him, Yousef asks for Younis you will send him though only when its late. What the hell you do then let Yousef choose the team as he wants. You chose Fawad for Australia and then you call him back, on what reasons. Did he perform badly in Australia? Is it not a shamefull act of yours?

  • Jamies XI (Perfect team) on January 1, 2010, 3:47 GMT

    By Jamie Alter in cricinfo specials : Test XI Matthew Hayden, Virender Sehwag, Ricky Ponting, Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Jacques Kallis, Adam Gilchrist (wk), Shaun Pollock, Shane Warne, Muttiah Muralitharan, Glenn McGrath and for ODI ODI XI Sanath Jayasuriya, Sachin Tendulkar, Ricky Ponting, Jacques Kallis, Andrew Symonds, Adam Gilchrist, Andrew Flintoff, Shaun Pollock, Brett Lee, Glenn McGrath, Muttiah Muralitharan

    Jamie Alter is a senior sub-editor at Cricinfo

  • Jack Comp on January 1, 2010, 3:43 GMT

    Pakistan should play Umar Gul as the third spinner, along with Kaneria and Ajmal. But, the Pakistani team is so bad that there is no hope. It should perform some terrorist act at home and that should give them excuse to abandon the series and head back home and save some embarassments. What a shameful display from a so called test team. Its worse than Bangledesh and Zimbabwy.

  • A. Ali on January 1, 2010, 3:36 GMT

    Pakistan can not play with 2 spinners (Keneria & Ajmal) and 3 fast bowlers (Aamir, Asif, Sami/Gul) because all of them don't bat well. Pakistan needs Afridi in place of Ajmal and a fast bowling allrounder in place of Sami/Gul. Pakistan needs to bat deep down the order with 5 bowling options (3 fast & 2 spin).

  • kulwant singh waraich on January 1, 2010, 3:31 GMT

    my team for sydney test 1 salman butt 2 yasir hameed 3 asim kamal 4 mohd yousuf 5 umar akmal 6 kamran akmal 7 shahid afridi 8 mohd aamer 9 umar gul 10 danish 11 mohd asif

  • param on January 1, 2010, 3:31 GMT

    i think pakistani bowling lineup would have won the test had the catches been held ....1st session, 2 drop catches, end of story

  • M.tahir from springfield illinois. on January 1, 2010, 3:04 GMT

    Please bring back Razzaq,afridi and younus.Razzaq in particular,for he has always performed well with both the bat and the ball...remember him being Man Of The Series in Australia.Pakistan's batting needs to be stronger,wiyhout compromising the bowling dept.Sami definately needs to play, since Akhter is not playing ...I still say pace is one thing that the Aussies are not that great against,..nevertheless our batting needs to go down to amir batting at no.9. Good luck Pakistan and open ur eyes selecters and listen to so many voices of reason instead of Parchee Players.

  • Himayun on January 1, 2010, 2:54 GMT

    The selection is simple. Abdul Rauof is already gone and can be replaced by Gul, only if he is fit.

    The inclusion of Afridi as a spinner would take care of that department. His fielding is far better than Kaneria and can bat great once in a while too! Ajmal should be kept in the team to give variety to the attack. He is young and can only improve. Kamran Akmal should be moved to open the innings with Butt. Faisal Iqbal can be given one or two more chances only on the condition that he improve his footwork. If he remain lead-footed, then fire him for good. This is his last chance in test cricket. With his poor form and mood swings, Younus has no future with Pakistan cricket. How many time we have to put up with his failures and temper tantrums?

  • Mnaan on January 1, 2010, 2:13 GMT

    I think that the Pakistani batting line up doesn't have enough depth so I think that Afridi should be played instead of Ajmal and put in Kaneria as well. I say this because I went to watch the MCG Test match and Ajmal's bowling had no variety except for his doosra. Afridi is an attacking bowler and has so much variation. Afridi also lifts the team with his commitment, and his batting can come in handy. I also think that Kamran should open with Butt and Afridi comes in at number 7. Iqbal should be replaced with either Fawad or Younus if he is available. Gul or Sami should come in for Rauf, whoever is in better form. I also think that Pakistan need to think positively and Afridi can help with that immensly. If you agree with my point please email me at mnaan@hotmail.com

    PAKISTAN ZINDABAD !

  • dboy0189 on January 1, 2010, 2:01 GMT

    we should select right team to play and win and my team 1 Salman Butt 2 Imran Nazir 3 Yasir Hameed 4 Yousaf 5 Umar Akmal 6 Shahid Afridi 7 Abdul Razzaq 8 Kamran Akmal 9 Aamir 10 Rana naveed / Sami 11 Asif to win against australia let players play their natural game and offence is the best defence should be the chief strategy

  • Salman on January 1, 2010, 1:51 GMT

    New terminology in cricket:

    1. He did a "Pakistani" thats a fileding error 2. He did a "Inzi" thats a Run Out! 3. He did a "MOYO" thats Run Out but not the comical Inzi one. 4.He did a "Imran Farat" thats hat-trick of dropped catches in the slips. 5.He did a "Shoaib" or "Mibah" thats saving your butt by playing one good innings. 6.He did a "Younis Khan" thats "I RESIGNS" 7. He did a "Faisel Iqbal" thats "Nepotism" for being a nephew of Javed Me&dad. 8. He did an "Intikhab Alam" thats a fit and agile coach 9. He did a "Abdul Rauf" thats mean age does'nt matter you can play for Pakistan at 50. 10. He did an "Ijaz Butt" thats "Resonsiblity without accountability"

    Thats my tens for Pakistan's cricket

  • mohammed jafar akram on January 1, 2010, 1:39 GMT

    The best test team pakistan can produce at the moment is as follows...

    Salman Butt Kamran Akmal Younis Khan Mohammed Yousaf Umar Akmal Misbah Ul Haq Afridi/Razzaq(depending on the wicket) MOhammed Aamer Mohammed Sami/Umar Gul Danish Kaneria

  • sayed jee on January 1, 2010, 1:16 GMT

    Funny comments Salman Riaz :):):)

    Kamran yar, use your influence as a physician and as a writer to convey to Mohd Yousuf not to literally break the back of the young camel (Mohd Aamir). He was WAAAAAY overused in the 1st test. Why waste such a good talent for what seems like a losing cause (3-0 series defeat) given the useless batting line up.

  • Ayzaz on January 1, 2010, 1:07 GMT

    Taufiq has a test average of 40 opening! Kamran akmal is prob best equipped of the current crop to open but for that he needs to give up keeping in tests. It's not possible to keep for 150 overs then go out to bat else gilchrist sangakara mccullum would all do it.

    With taufiq,Malik, younis,alam,kaneria, kamal, afridi ,gul ,tanvir,akhter, razzaq we can field a better reserve team than the actual team!

    But they would all still drop catches!

  • Suleiman on January 1, 2010, 0:53 GMT

    Forget about Younis or afridi ....how come Abdul Razzak is not in the test squad. He may not be the best test player in pak team but he's far better than faisal, farhat, misbah, fawad, malik butt. we also need a good 5th bowling option...playing against aussie with only 4 front line bowlers was a big mistake....just hope they learn from their mistakes

  • Ehtisham on January 1, 2010, 0:41 GMT

    I totally agree with your points Kamran. I just want to add for those who want Younus and Afridi in the team, It is still not confirmed by the board that he is going to Australia and Afridi himself decided to opt out from the tests as mentioned by him in many interviews before he only wants to focus at Odi’s and T20’s otherwise it will be the best balanced team having both Younus & Afridi. Now coming back to the team combination, I think the following combination should be used in the 2nd test match against Austrailia:- 1-Salman Butt 2-Imran(Fawad should be preferred on better technique but just the news came on Geo both Fawad & Rouf have been sent back to Pakistan, so I always go with genuine openers rather make shift openers in test cricket) 3-Mohammad Yousuf 4-Misbah / Shoaib Malik 5-Umar Akmal 6-Faisal Iqbal (The best slot for him is at no. 5 or 6) 7-Kamran Akmal 8-Mohammad Amir 9-Umar Gul/Saeed Ajmal(Depending on the Pitch conditions) 10- Mohammad Asif 11-Kneria

  • anwar saeed butt on January 1, 2010, 0:15 GMT

    I would like to chose a team that will win the sydney test and they shuld play like a team. my selected team is; salman butt shahid afridi faisal iqbal mohammad yousuf umar akmal misbah ul haq kamran akmal mohammad aamer mohammad sami danish kanira mohammad asif

  • khangeeh on December 31, 2009, 23:42 GMT

    my recommendations for pakistan team 1. get mentally tough. Learn from Australia, they not only target best players from opposite team but indirectly influence umpires and match refrees through their ex-players via media. 2. Drop players with victomised mentation. Cricket is a mental game. We need hot heads with restraints like aamer, umar akmal, shahid afridi, kamran akmal and cool heads with professinal explosiveness like yosuf, yonus, asif, abdul razzaq. My team for sydney salman shoaib shahid afridi yousuf umar akmal kamran akmal aamer danish asif sami umar/ajmal

    5 batsmen, 5 bowlers i keeper and tecnically 2 allrounders

  • Emad on December 31, 2009, 23:41 GMT

    Pakistan selectors need to give statements with their announcements of squads. They always seem to amaze me with names of some players to be able to play against internationals teams, and that too against AUSTRALIA. From the NZ series i was shocked that we didn't have any proper all-rounder in the squad besides the out-of-form Shoaib Malik. Playing with 4 bowlers is un-thinkable in this day and age. You NEED to have a fifth bowling option (i would like to see Abdul Razzaq). THe selectors should've seen the faults in the squad right after the NZ series and sent some more experience like Razzaq instead of Sami, and taken out khurram and a few others. with the Afridi problem, it's not the selectors, its Afridi himself that has said he's not going to be playing test cricket temporarily to focus for the 2011 world Cup. Also, Salman Butt is a much better batsman than Farhat, Farhat only does well in Pakistan. Butt on the other hand scored a centry and 50 last time he came to Australia. Go PK

  • khangeeh on December 31, 2009, 23:37 GMT

    my recommendations for pakistan team 1. get mentally tough. Learn from Australia, they not only target best players from opposite team but indirectly influence umpires and match refrees through their ex-players via media. 2. Drop players with victomised mentation. Cricket is a mental game. We need hot heads with restraints like aamer, umar akmal, shahid afridi, kamran akmal and cool heads with professinal explosiveness like yosuf, yonus, asif, abdul razzaq. My team for sydney salman shoaib shahid afridi yousuf umar akmal kamran akmal aamer danish asif sami umar/ajmal

    5 batsmen, 5 bowlers i keeper and tecnically 2 allrounders

  • amir cheema on December 31, 2009, 23:29 GMT

    All we are trying to patch a pot hole,Pakistan need proficnal body and selectrs with a system from grass rout.that is the only way cricket will improve.Kamran should be ban from cricket,as a vice capton extreemly irresponsible short he played.who ever pick Rauf i have to say God bless him.MoYo did not make sence about 20/20 we all knew he was angry about his ommision from T20 and he went on for ICL.Why PCB do not try new players we are loosing any way so what may we find new kid like aamir and umer.brig back shoiab for only test we need him belive or not.Farhet Misbah Faisal they should play domistic only.Like i said need a solid pro body above players power and a good grass rout level system,other wise forget it and stick with 20/20 champion.

  • NaderAbbas on December 31, 2009, 23:19 GMT

    I want to make sum points here! 1. Opening problem is annoying, shows no policy of PCB 2 overcome it.I agree with writer abt Malik(specially) or Kamran Akmal can be tried at no 1 position. These so called specialist openers have destroyes us badly, take a look at Shane watson! Is he a specialist opener??Whoever performs is specialist. 2. Pakistan board has killed(the most appropriate word i find) the careers of many youngstars, and 1 that is proving costly now a days is that of Asim Kamal. 3. Shahid Afridi is always dangerous in any form of cricket.He iz nw the most capable bowler n also can be helpful with his batting. 4. Main n most important issue!! PCB,should ask 4 icc to specially allow them replace their fielders with Austalian club cricketers, so that they could aviod chances of drop catches.

  • Nadeem Bhutta on December 31, 2009, 22:50 GMT

    I have a strong feeling that this Pakistan team can make it come sydney and Hobart but agression would be required in Bowling, Danish Kaneria is a vital cog. I really do not think Saeed Ajmal is as good a bowler as he initially was. Pakistan can not sort out Opening problems by making changes within a test series and this has to be sorted from the grass root. Younis has not been in a good form for over 6 months and rushing him into a test series is not the best idea. Let us keep some faith with Faisal at 3 and Yousuf at 4. What should be hoped for is Pakistan winning the toss at the SCG and getting a score of close to 400 then we should have a game on espcially if GUL and KANERIA are back. I wish you Osman a very prosperous coming year and keep it up with your great work.You have a brilliant inside on PAKISTAN cricket.I am based in Nigeria but i follow Paki cricket better than the national selectors aswell. Cheers

  • Bilal Saeed on December 31, 2009, 22:46 GMT

    I agree with most of the points made in your post. I do feel that M.Yousuf's approach was timid and lacked the sting needed to compete at such a level. I also believe that great batsmen do not make great captains, an outstanding example is sachin tendulkar but then again if you look at other people on the pakistani roster then suddenly M.Yousuf looks far more appealing. I agree we need our "usual suspects" back. Younis, Afridi, Gul should be back in the team. If only we can sort out our top 3 and by that i mean not needing your number 3 to literally open the batting since the openers can't handle the initial burst and tighten our fielding, Aussies won't know what hit them. Our pace is world class, i would rate them as one of the best in the world right now. But we need assistance from our batting and fielding. Come on guys!!

  • Javed Zarif Canada on December 31, 2009, 22:16 GMT

    when YK decided to rest after ODI loss in Middle east I thought what an idiot he was. Infact he was very smart. Everyone even the cricket intelligensia is clamouring for his return despite that he has been catching fish and not playing cricket. What a peevish outlook we have as a nation and that transpires to our cricket team as well. A player who took time off to restore his form must not be allowed in the team without playing enough domestic cricket, no matter how big the name is. Problem is that corruption permeates in every department of pakistan ,cricket being no exception. Cricket is on a fail like any other institution. I hope i am not being pessimistic but we should not expect much in the years to come. we may get a win here and there based on individual briliance but a sustained level of performnce seems alusive. so lets not worry too much and enjoy what this battered nation has to offer.

  • shabut on December 31, 2009, 22:06 GMT

    Pakistan's batting was so miserable that they made a mediocre bowler like Nathan Hauritz looked great. No matter who plays the whole mind set needs an overhaul in the Pak team. There is probably another aspect which needs attention. There are three coaches in the team e.g. Intekhab, Waqar, and Aqib which are all bowlers. No wonder the batting is so pathetic. It's about time that Intekhab is shown the doors.

  • Humayun Khan Afridi on December 31, 2009, 21:35 GMT

    Everyone is running their 11 best players, and everyone has included Afridi in it, but for everyone's info, Afridi is playing the KFC big bash and was the man of the match in the very first match. Why should he just leave everything there and come? He is under a contract with them and by the way he is retired from Test cricket.. We need his aggression, i see imran's personality in him. He is a person who can discipline them. At least he can finish this grouping, simple solution will be you are in my group which is the only group in the team, or you are out... Have you heard of anti Imran group in Imran Khan's time, because no one could dare.. Also yousaf's lack of agression and inferiority complex is a big problem. I think yousaf is a world class player but is tooooooooo humble for my liking. Be arrogant like imran, just to show your opponent that extra bit of confidence.Keep Allah out of cricket, because i dont think He watches cricket and or is bothered about the results ...

  • Rashid on December 31, 2009, 21:35 GMT

    You......selectors please leave politic, we are very close to be the subject of charity match.If we play with our ability people will watch us. Kick out Malik, he is basically a bowler but after his action was banned he is nothing but a nuisance.Bring back Afridi and Younus.Have a strong grip, follow by rule or get out no matter who is the player even if we had a player like Imran.Players should not rule.Farhat causes more runs from dropping catches then he scores.

  • Ray on December 31, 2009, 21:33 GMT

    Good team Sunil. I'd only change Malik for Faisal or Yunus (if available). Malik as talented and hardworking as he is, has lost confidence due to various factors. Captaincy got him under pressure and then into politics. Afridi is a good hoice, at 7 or 1. Finally Mr Abbasi recognizes Kaneria as a bowler of some quality - maybe when he heard so many commentators saying it, he was left with no other choice. Between Gul and Sami, I'd try Sami again, he's more aggressive, better batsman and by far a better fielder.

  • Pintu on December 31, 2009, 21:28 GMT

    I agree more than 100% with Kamran: Younus, Shahid Afridi and Danish should be brought back and Yousuf should be more agressive in his captaincy (should learn from Dhoni)

  • Syed Naqi on December 31, 2009, 21:24 GMT

    we dont need to call any openers we have fawad alam who already open the inning in srilanka and he scored hunderd and his average much better than faisal iqbal,butt and farhat all of them played more than 20 test each and produce only 6 hunderd for pakistan salman but!!! scored 2 hunderds in 25 test useless iqbal 1 in 25 test match and parchi farhat 31 test 3 hunderds wonderful top order for pakistan

  • AZ on December 31, 2009, 21:20 GMT

    Since when Yousuf became a comedian - for him to say T20 is finishing the test cricket in Pakistan is quite hilarious. First he balmes it on bad bowling on 1st day, then he takes on T20. Can someone remind him there is also a small factor called " Batting " which his buddy Misbah is also unfamiliar with? It is clear that Yousuf and MIsbah are buddy buddy - so unfortunately we will continue to see Misbah as long as Yousuf is on the helm....yep, Fawab alam got to go back home...

  • Syed Naqi on December 31, 2009, 21:03 GMT

    My team for Sydney Salman Butt Fawad Alam Younis khan Yousuf Umer Akmal Afridi Kamran Akmal Aamer Asif Sami/Gul Kaneria Tell butt last chance for you farhat dont bring him back faisal iqbal tell him if u score 1000 runs in domestic you never gona come back useless batsman his average below than johnson i think misbha only good for ipl go and play in india and make some money neways he dont have enough cricket left rauf send him him back ASAP i was in board i stopped to playing domestic cricket few of domestic players bc they scored well in domestic i dont knw how may be they pay or what selector give them a chance and again fail to perform 1.Imran Farhat 2.faisal Iqbal 3. Abdur Rauf 4.Salman Butt 5.Mohammad hafeez 6.Khurram Manzoor bc of them new telant not getting a chance in team bring younis khan back he will score better than useless faisal iqbal give fawad alam a chance he deserved it his average better than our top order so why he is not in a team ????

  • kevin ross on December 31, 2009, 20:48 GMT

    I agree 100% with the post posted by Usman. Mr Ijaz Butt and Co. has brought the Pakistan cricket to its knees. Pakistan cant win in Australia with the batting depth they have. We need good in form 2 to 3 all rounders in team to challenge the Ausralians.

    Pakistan Team to be chosen if they stand a chance to challenge the Australians... Salman Butt (opener) Kamran Akmal (opener) Mohmad Yousuf (one down) Umer Akmal Shahif Afridi (Captian on both test and ODI side) Asim Kamal Taufeeq Umer (great with bat and ball) Abdul Razzak Shoaib Akhter (Need him for pace in Australian Pitches) M.Amer Gul / Rao or Ajmal /Kaneria (Depending of pitch conditions)

  • Sarmad Saleem on December 31, 2009, 20:46 GMT

    I have been following your comments for quite some time and enjoy reading them. In my view Pakistan should be learning from these tests and planning for the future. Younis Khan should have been in the team no matter what. Secondly I am still unable to understand as to why Fawad Alam was dropped from the team after scoring a hundred. In my opinion he is a better player than Butt and Farhat. He is the one who should be opening with Salman Butt. Another point is that all good teams have an allrounder in their test teams, like Kallis for South Africa, Flintoff was for England. Pakistan have Shahid Afridi, he is good enough to bat at number 6 or 7 in test cricket. In my opinion the team which should be playing for Pakistan in future tests is: Fawad Alam Salman Butt Younis Khan Mohammed Yousuf Umar Akmal Kamran Akmal Shahid Afridi Mohammed Aamir Umar Gul Mohammed Asif Danish Kaneria Afridi gives Pakistan the fifth bowler which I think they have been lacking.

  • Kashif on December 31, 2009, 20:40 GMT

    I think we need to get Younis back at 3 followed by Yousuf and Umar. I would give the 6th spot to Afridi. For a team like Australia, you can't win with 4 bowlers, specially if they have such work-horse type bowlers like Rauf. I am glad he is back in Pakistan now. Misbah is OK but there is no prospect there. He is on and off all the time and he is in his mid-30s. Too late for him to give much to Pakistan.

  • sunil reddy on December 31, 2009, 20:17 GMT

    This team, if chosen, will win in sydney

    Butt Kamran Akmal Malik Youhana Umar akmal Misbah Afridi Aamer Gul Asif Kaneria

  • Shahzad on December 31, 2009, 20:14 GMT

    If Pakistan wants to win in Sydney, have to do a gamble by calling Afridi. Replace Farhat and F.Iqbal with Afridi and Malik given that Sydney wicket is not bouncy but spin. Malik may not be superior to Farhat in terms of technique but Malik is extremely strong mentally that is why Bob Woolmer transformed him from a bowler to Batsman by making him play at open or one-down position. Two spinners in eleven the form of Kaneria and Ajmal will be the beggest mistake

  • Jay Tee on December 31, 2009, 19:38 GMT

    Ideal team under given circumstances

    Salman Butt Kamran Akman Younis Khan M. Yousuf Umar Akmal Misbah ul Haq or Faisal Iqbal Shahid Afridi M. Aamer M. Asif Umar Gul Danish Kaneria

  • Shaaik ( IOK) on December 31, 2009, 19:30 GMT

    They say,"When going gets tough- tough gets going". Here we are talking about a team who has got the likes of Yousuf, Aasif, Kamran, ant the two stubborn young players in the form of Omar and Aamir who are the two future greats if they are not haunted by Injury Gods.Leave Kaneria aside who any his day can run through any batting line up. Who whats missing in our camp and the answer is as simple as that- AUDACITY is what is missing. Well, we have been loosing against Aussies from a decade now and why are we loosing is known to every one-its the fear in the minds of our players. lets throw that fear out of the window and lets play out of our skins and give them a tough time at least if we win and in any case no body expects them turn the tables over nite. Younis Khan's inclusion could have proved the balm the Yousuf and the is longing for some time now. lets put our hands up and the accept the reality that Younis Khan completes this feeble looking pak team..... Good luck PAKISTAN

  • Shahid on December 31, 2009, 19:29 GMT

    What is going on? Pak team need to go back to basics and relearn (or is it learn for first time) the art of fielding. Then put some aggression in thier play and not be afriad of the Aussies. also the need a allrounder - Afridi?

  • Asif Zardari on December 31, 2009, 19:22 GMT

    Main kehta hoon sari team sindh is select kar lo. Yeh jo Punjab se player select kiye jaatey hain yeh jhamooriaat kaey khilaaf sazish hae oar bibi shaheed kae mission kae Khilaaf hae. Main ne toa shoaib Akhtar se bi khaha hea 20 laakh maerey account mae daal doa toa koi tumhen team se nahin nikaaley ga. Yeh kesey jeet saktey hain jab yeh mujey 50% nahin detey

  • Adeel on December 31, 2009, 19:20 GMT

    There are good points in your Article Kamran, but i believe the first reason of pakistan's loss is a damn poor fielding & thats it. Catches win matches! Good batsmen need only one chance & once you miss a given opportunity to dismiss, they wont look back & will capitalise fully. secondly, i do agree on shahid afridi's return to test cricket because he is quite capable of producing some thing special with bat/ball & fielding. I think Imran Farhat must have strong relations with selectors as despite his poor technique/form,he's able to continue. I would rather prefer Imran nazir on his place, because he's got good technique & lacks only in temparament which he'll definitely learn if picked for tests. i also believe in not changing the combination so often but for God's sake, when one hasn't got a technique, then drop him. Thirdly, yes australia has been troubled by a quick bowler, so Sami or Gul should play alongwith Kaneria but playing two spinners isnt a good choice.

  • atif on December 31, 2009, 19:04 GMT

    The team needs Shoib Malik back immediately. A good batsmen, a handy bowler and a good fielder also. Drop Misbah because he is useless.

  • Salman Riaz on December 31, 2009, 19:00 GMT

    Good Morning Mr Abbasi. 1. Younis Khan is not in this team because of his own Childish and immature attitude. It is not because of the selectors. He chose not to play first class cricket till just recently. he needs to be assessed by a Child Psychiatrist as he is behaving like a 5 yr old who runs away from the ground if he is out cheaply. May be my 10 year old nephew has better mental state than that man.

    Pakistan Team needs to be given room to groom. They will be fine. We need a Foreign Batting Coach like Tom Moody, Andy Flower or Dave Whatmore.Pakistan needs to rebuilt on a Professional basis rather than on "Jan Pehchan" basis. Even Geoff Lawson is not a bad option. Let Inti rest. The rest of the ppl like Waqar and Aaqib should be kept in touch. We need to expand the concept of the National Cricket Academy and make one academy of each province and hold matches among them. Ppl like Mudassar Nazar should be the incharge of such work.

    Salman Riaz

  • all sucks on December 31, 2009, 18:57 GMT

    test team Afridi captain and things going to change sure Malik Misbah Gul dinesh aamer afridi akmals and try some new opner like Umer akmal and malik

  • Mohammad Usman on December 31, 2009, 18:55 GMT

    Pakistan can do the best with the following team 1. Salman Butt 2. Taufeeq Umar 3. Younus Khan 4. Mohammad Yousuf 5. Umar Akmal 6. Shahid Afridi 7. Kamran Akmal 8. Mohammed Aamer 9. Umar Gul 10. Danish Kaneria 11. Mohammad Asif

    Believe me, this is the best available talent although we need to replace the openers if we can find someone better. Atleast Taufeeq has a good tehnique and plays very straight. Salman has scored on Australia soil before. The rest pick themselves. Afridi is a must. Having Afridi and Younus in the team gives you bowling variety as well as sharp fielding. They are also great motivators. PLEASE IF PCB IS READING FOR GOD'S SAKE DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT !

  • Imran on December 31, 2009, 18:47 GMT

    Why was Malik included,he doesn't want to bowl anymore,because of his injuries and that he chucks so he's lost his previous little ability at spin bowling.He refuses to open or bat at one down,just like Misbah.He also started out as a bowler and bowlers never become top order batsman,look at his poor defence and lack of run scoring stroke play,he's a slogger.What jokers,if you want to play for your country as a batsman then put your money where your mouth is,anyone can come in and bat at 6/7 when the ball is old and you are under no pressure.Thats where allrounders bat. Don't tell me there aren't better batsman in Pak, every street corner there is prob a better player,no one gives them a club contract though,thats the root problem-nepotism. Akmal shouldn't open while he is still keeper,no team has ever done that in tests.Give him a run as opener and get a real keeper who doesn't drop 1/3 catches per innings,one dropped catch can lose you the game and we drop bucket loads.

  • Waqas on December 31, 2009, 18:23 GMT

    Excellent analysis Dr. Sahib! A few points:

    1) The selectors are either corrupt or foolish...look at the number of fringe players in the squad. Why the hell was Sami recalled out of the wildnerness (despite his awful record over 6-7 years of international cricket) while Younis Khan needs to 'prove himself'? These selectors should be sent to jail!

    2) Abdur Rauf, Shoaib Malik, and Sami should immediately be sent back. Afridi or Razzaq should be called in as 5th bowler/allrounder.

    3) Imran Farhat...what can be said about him? I know he's a BIG TIME Sifarishi...but I would keep him in the team for continuity's sake if nothing else. If he's dropped then, yes, Kamran Akmal should open with Salman Butt with a space freeing up in the middle order...but who'll fill up that spot? The selectors seem adamant not to send YK and Afridi isn't even in their thoughts!! :(

    4) Gul and Kaneria HAVE to come back for the remaining tests. Dropping Gul was a BIG mistake in the 1st test...

  • nasir raza dar on December 31, 2009, 18:20 GMT

    Calling back Fawad & Rauf,Rauf seems ok but why Fawad who can be handy in ODI`S & T20.One should have called back Malik what he is doing over there. I agree with Yousaf that T20 is killing our Test cricket & the best example is Misbah & Kamran`s shots in 2nd innings as they are playing a T20 not a test match.You need to learn how to stay at the wicket & by playing T20 one can`t learn that art.Anybody agree with me or not T20 is the brain child of INDIAN BOOKIES & there is lot of gambling going on in these games & BCCI with the help of ICC promoting it.Wakeup call for PCB don`t indulge in this nor allowed your players.Give preference to Test & ODIs in this way our young players will be able to learn the art of staying at the wicket & moreover we will find & groom Mohsin, Muddasar, Aamir,Saeed Anwar of the future otherwise we will see the openers like we have at the moment"plz hold my cigar I am coming in one or 2 minutes.SOCHO Mr Butt don`t run from pillar 2 post for IPL,BHOOL JA IPL.

  • asadakki on December 31, 2009, 18:13 GMT

    The main problem is PCB, Mr. Butt is unfit for chairman job and the selectors are bunch of ego people. I dont understand if Misbah can go to new zealand and australia without any form, why keeping YK away from touring. The only reason I can thin of they are waiting to see Yousuf fails as a captain and bring back YK as a captain. Faisal , misbah, farhat, butt and malik they all are average crickters,u cant compare these players to the class of YK. Even if YK is not in form his presence helps other players and motivate team .

  • shahmeer on December 31, 2009, 17:52 GMT

    The real problem with our openers' dilemma is that we are trying to find good openers, not create them... sure we found umar akmal, aamer etc. but we cannot rely on such lottery by trying different openers. in fact now we hav pretty much tried all and are recycling them and hoping they'd have gotten better now. What we really need to do is create the right setup and environment to nurture openers in domestic cricket. And this is a long process, definitely not achievable by the WC. So for now we should open with K.Akmal and Shoaib Malik. Even if we doubt they won't be perfect for opening, they couldn't be any worse than S. Butt, I. Farhat, I. Nazir, and the likes that we have tried out.

    And yeah I agree, Afridi should come back, especially since our other batsmen are not doing too well either, and he can bowl too. F. Alam has been initially somewhat disappointing, but deserves more chance. Misbah will have to go. And Gul should come back in place of Rauf.

  • Bilal Jabbar on December 31, 2009, 17:50 GMT

    I think the best Pakistan can do is call Younis back to his no.3 slot, Just him being there with his experience is worth it. Move Akmal up the order and make him open the batting, with Butt, so that he can play his shots and if all goes well he can seize Pak the early initiative. Finally Afridi should come in place of Farhat as a genuine allrounder. Bare in mind that though he may appear to be a bad test batsman, just look at his record, he has performed every other innnings and has a decent average of 37.

  • Jahanzeb on December 31, 2009, 17:49 GMT

    I think we need these two in the team.

    Asim Kamal for the simple reason that it has always been the Karachi school of batting - Miandad, Asif Mujtaba and now this guy who can nudge and stay at the wicket for long time. Again we do not send him in as No3. He is a perfect No.5. Here is what Cricinfo says about him.. "Asim Kamal is the sort of batsman who can bind the middle order together, allowing others to bat around him. He is typically minimalist, particularly well equipped with a fluid cover-drive, but his meat and drink are nudged singles and patient spells of batting"

    Secondly, we need Taufiq Umar to open the batting with either Salman or Kamran Akmal.

    Look at Taufeeq Umar's stats for the 2009 season so far. I think he would deserve a chance, given this form and his past experience. Taufeeq Umar Matches 9 Innings 16 Not Outs 2 Runs 617 HS 154* Avg 44.07 Centuries 3 We also need either Razzaq or Afridi in at No.6 to give us the fifth bowler.

  • sohail makda on December 31, 2009, 17:49 GMT

    i think ajmal doesnt bowl well at all he was firing the ball not flighting..he was bowling in nintees not in eightees he should toss the ball up not firing..and fawad alam need a chance because of his 150odd against srilanka.... i dont know the reason why he was dropped after playing that good innings he got only 1 chance against kiwis.abdulrauf was a rubbish choice with no pace no line.a big big need of younis khan he is a perfect choice at number 3.fielding has to be improve otherwise we cant win matches by dropping the simple chances.

  • the cricketer on December 31, 2009, 17:46 GMT

    No doubt that aus has defeated pak in the 1st test match with 170 runs. I think we stress more on replacements rather concentrating on weak areas. Right from the beginning of this tour that starts from NZ, our fielding and batting is letting the whole side down. But if u guys remember almost the same that batted the 1st test match against aus, has scored 455 runs in their 2nd innings against NZ. Although I agree that the conditions and the team are different here. But if u r talking about the incapability of this team scoring big numbers, the previous recent record is proving it wrong. All we need is a lot of improvement in batting and fielding with off course a very good plan. We have 2 coaches in bowling department and see that bowling is what has kept this team competitive even in aus (aus 225/8) in 2nd innings. The elimination of Ricky Ponting in the 2nd innings was the result of a bowling strategy. Wasn’t it??? Same is required in the department of batting and fielding.

  • Merit on December 31, 2009, 17:42 GMT

    Can selectors see this?

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/media-gallery/17-karachi+blue+lifts+quaid-e-azam+trophy-ek-01

    Not a single players from above link (team) is in the Pak team on permanent basis? Why? Why? Why?

  • hammad kalim on December 31, 2009, 17:35 GMT

    Mr Abbasi i agree with you on some of the points .First of all the we have to get rid of pirchee baz players like Fiasal Iqbal , Imran Farhat and Shoiab Malik and Kurram Manzoor.None of those players have skills or talent to play TEST CRICKET.Imran Farhat and shoaib Malik might be good for ONEDAY or TWENTY TWENTY but not for longer version.Umer Gul and Danish Kaneria should be in for Rauf and Ajmal.I really d' not know what selectors were thinking to put Abdul Rauf in test matches for Australia while they have peolpe like Shoail Khan , Wahab Riaz and Mohammad Talha in pakistan .They might be inexperience but have speed and swing.I really do not see any batsman who could be Australia who deserve more chance .The standards of first class cricket in pakistan is not blossoming any batsman. Pakistani batsmen simlpy do not have temperament or skill for 5 days cricket.Pcb is not doing any thing to rectify the flaws in fielding and batting .All WE could say good luck to Pakistan in Ausralia.

  • SayedJee on December 31, 2009, 17:22 GMT

    Just a comment on Sami, just because be took 8 wickets in QA final does not mean a DODO. That was on a helping track and against batsmen who play 4-day match like 20/20. Sami sprays all over the place he has no real control over line or length. Ozies will target him and blast him all over the park.

  • Mudassar Rana on December 31, 2009, 17:20 GMT

    Pakistan fought with probably 3 players on fire against a team where all 11 were on fire. A lot of people need to answer questions. the team selection is perplexing but is a symptom not the real problem. the real problem lies at the top and until u solve that everything else will remain. pakistan succeed despite the administrators at the pcb not because of them. There needs to be a massive cull and people introduced who are sincere and not there because of their connections.

    Now to the performance. Despite our much vaunted bowling attack it was the aussies whose bowlers performed with the honourable exception of aamir. Who defies all expectations and at such a young age is really carrying pakistan himself.

    Pakistan need to drop farhat.. who is there purely because of pa in law. Rauf was a major dissappointment also. Kamran akmal needs to open permanently with butt. no.3 should be yousuf if younis wont be brought back in. Razzaq, afridi, and kaneria need to be permanent fixtures.

  • Paki_mental_torture on December 31, 2009, 17:03 GMT

    Kamran bhai you're spot on this time. Pak needs strong mental, gutsy, agressive leader only. Yousuf and the likes can be part of the team but don't have the required skills to lead from the top.

  • Imran on December 31, 2009, 17:02 GMT

    Imran Farhat is the biggeest sifarshi in the team becoz of his father in law he is in this team this guy has been given so many chances and can any one tell me why fawad alam has been sent back whyyyy he scored a very good century against srilanka in srilanka on a very diff pitch and showed that he had the temprament and technique out formar players have to raise such issues and put some stong statements its like a joke.We need young players and believe me we are all tired with people like Imran farhat who just go to icl when they are not picked in team and then comes up again with the NOC from icl what a mess all i will say our selection are the biggest mafia that is hurting out team.People like abdul qadir and amir sohail were forced to left becoz they were not willing to accept parchis I would request media to put pressure and ask this selection team that on what basis they selected Imran farhat,fausal iqbal whyyy its soo killing to see our team making mazak of out nation

  • Faisal on December 31, 2009, 16:55 GMT

    Some changes are essential. Pakistan needs to have a batting all-rounder at number 6, The best option currently is Shahid Afridi. The bonus will be an automatic improvement in fielding as well as energy & aggressiveness on the field. Though Shahid is not in the team but he is playing league cricket in Australia & can be called at a very short notice. Secondly we need to look at an alternate for Imran Farhat. It may be a time to try out Shoaib Malik at the top of the order to do what Watson has done for Australia. Third change is to have a better first change bowler than Abdul Rauf. Current team means selection of Umar Gul. Similarly, Kaneria shoudl be preferred over Ajmal as he is definitely a more aggresive option. Ajmal can still find a place in the team if the track is spin friendly by preferring him over the third seamer. In case if Shahid Afridi is not available then Fawad Alam should be played instead of Misbah who is well past his prime.

  • Arbab on December 31, 2009, 16:38 GMT

    You can't expect to win a test match against Australia when both of your openers and one down batsman average in 20s in tests as was the case in Melbourne. You are right on money to call selector's call for Younis to prove himself laughable when Imran Farhat, Salman Butt, Faisal Iqbal, Shoaib Malik and Misbah Ul Haq are already in the test squad. Look at their numbers and One would wonder how the hell did they get in the test team with such dismal statistics.

  • Javed Butt on December 31, 2009, 16:32 GMT

    Poor fielding is one of the major weakness in pakistan team.Too many simple catches are dropped still pakistani bowlers have the courage to contineu. At 99 drop catch was of Johnson by abdul Rauf was typical example. They need very urgently fielding coach & fitness coach.

  • Waqaas on December 31, 2009, 16:26 GMT

    Brining back Younus Khan seems ideal given the lack of stability in Pakistan's batting line up. However the issue of weather he can be brought back without proving his form is a dilemma that the selectors will face. In my opinion despite the need for a player he should not just be recalled out of nowhere. This recall will simply unrest the current playing 11. It is quite obvious that faisal iqbal, butt and farhat all are struggling. However I believe they should be given a chance completely. There should be no change in the line up despite their poor performances. For teh entire series keep the top 3 stable. Give the players a chance. In pakistan if a player doesnt perform in 2 matches he automatically gets thrown out. This is the main reason for the inexperience. Give the players the entire series. The ones that don't perform in the enitre series should then be elimnated.

  • tahir on December 31, 2009, 16:20 GMT

    I agree with everything Usman wrote above. The only way we win a test in Australia is if someone like Afridi is in the side, who can inspire confidence in the palyers. In fact I always believed Afridi should be the captain of this team for all 3 formats.

  • Naeem on December 31, 2009, 16:18 GMT

    The team needs changes but they have to be good changes. Playing only four bowlers is always a killer against teams like australia or even india because they tend to score in excess of 400-500. allrounders, even of ordinary quality is needed; someone that can turn the arm over and bowl at least 5 overs a day. I don't think Faisal Iqbal is a poor player. I have never been a fan of him, but we can drop Farhat and have him open and have Younus Khan come in at 3. Its surprising that we don't have an allrounder in the entire country? I am willing to provide my services :) I have done decent in U.S club cricket but that again on mating wickets :) I may not have control but I hurl the ball topping speeds of low 140's. Some time I am so sick of this stuff and wish that I would just give it a try. Anyways, extra bowlers are needed. Just look at the track record. Our batting always sucked bad and for yousaf to say that 20's is killing test is a joke. Just look at the record MoYo.

  • Nauman on December 31, 2009, 16:18 GMT

    I am surprised how you can rate Salman better than Imran, they both are pathetic, poor and ordinary, suited to club and street cricket. Shoaib Malik should play as opener, with an assured run of atleast 10 test innings. His bowling has been under-rated as well, he should be encouraged to do more, what better place than Sydney? Big NO to 'Kamran Akmal for opener', he is needed down with our long fragile tail. I disagree with bringing Younis back, besides Faisal Iqbal hasn't done too bad. I thought Fawad Alam was the next big thing (before Umar Akmal showed up), can we give him a decent run in middle order. My line-up would be: Shoaib Malik Salman Butt Yousuf (at #3, about time you take resposibility) Umar Akmal Fawad Alam Faisal Iqbal Kamran Akmal Aamer Gul Danish Asif.

    Yousuf must lead from front, stay for long periods. Fawad, Umar, Faisal are all more comfortable with the ball a bit old, let the young guns play in their comfort zone. The 2-spinner talk is rubbish, we need fire of Gul

  • Dr. Islam on December 31, 2009, 16:17 GMT

    #1 point : The president of the country should have some sense to understand that people are sick about the current inefficient and corrupt PCB, See how many people are cursing them everyday. Only insane administrator and selector would try players like Farhat, faisal Iqbal and abdur Rauf in place of tested veterans like Younus, Afridi, Gul. How in the world people like Butt, Qasim and Intikhab can save their jobs? Why don't those dull head people understand that whole cricket world is mad at them ( even commentators were surprised for not including tested players) for their supreme stupidity. I bet a layman or a ricksapuller can pick a much better 11 which can be much more competitive with australia.

    #2. May GOD increase the IQ of the Pakistani cricket board officials and selectors by 2nd test, so that we can see a better game. What more can we do?

  • mohsin khan on December 31, 2009, 16:11 GMT

    this all hapened just bcz of groupism by shoaib malik and misabh. paksitan team have won the world cup t20.they were the champoins but after that these two selfish players has ruined the team

  • AM on December 31, 2009, 16:07 GMT

    I am all for Afridi playing for Pakistan in test matches because I greatly respect his all-round talents. But the fact is that for quite some time Afridi has skipped test matches (I think he last played one in late 2006 or early 2007). He has focused on one-day matches and Twenty20. Without announcing his retirement from tests, Afridi has conveniently shunned the longer format. To some extent I agree with Yousuf that Twenty20 is killing test matches in Pakistan, but the shorter version also requires exceptional fielding. Where is the evidence of that in the Pakistani test team? Surely they should have the best fielding side? The fact is that these collapses in test matches point more to the national characteristics of Pakistanis where emotionalism and macho-ism have run amok and any activity which requires calm, patience and introspection are mostly absent. That is why Pakistanis focus more on fast bowling and hard-hitting, but fail dismally in other areas required for success.

  • sleepshrink on December 31, 2009, 15:43 GMT

    There are people talking about bringing taufeeq umar back, up there. They have forgotten his colossal failiures on flat tracks. He has a gap between bat a pad which is as big a asia. He has no chance in australia. Stop going back to people who have had there chances. We can't do any worse than we are doing now.

  • kazi on December 31, 2009, 15:43 GMT

    pakistan players still dont know how to play test cricket?pakistan criccket team now should play with 2 pace &2 spinner,out rauf & farhat,shoaib & kaneria in,bowling & batting agrresive,need more fielding practice,i can not expect much for team if they want to win they have to change some improvement in all areaa,batting,bowling,fielding,lets see what is going to happen in next cricket match,i think pakistan will lose 3-0 series

  • sleepshrink on December 31, 2009, 15:38 GMT

    Faisal Iqbal should go. He should absolutely go. Everytime he walks out there with the test average that he has, my head hangs in shame. He is a walking advertisement of nepotism in Pakistan. If you play a chicken at no three for so many tests, That chicken will end up having a better average than Mr. Nephew. We have no hope of consistency in our batting line up until he is there.

  • kamran on December 31, 2009, 15:20 GMT

    I agree with Vineet's line up. 2 spin and 2 tear away fast will reduce Aussies to rubble.

  • Dawar on December 31, 2009, 15:17 GMT

    We should have separate team for T20, One Day and Test. Yousuf admitted that Pakistan cricket test skills are dying by T20. I really appreciate Younis Kahn decision to take retirement after winning T20 WC for Pakistan. He was the best scorer of the tournament but he took retirement. This is I really in Younis Khan, he is so honest, and we do not see honest players in Pak cricket any more. We should bring him with respect and give Captainship till he retired.

    Dawar

  • Pier Wasif on December 31, 2009, 15:17 GMT

    I have been reading about the comments posted with so many individuals about the whole issue of Pak Cricket, My friend let me tell you one thing we have to remove all the dope head selectors to getanywhere in the world of cricket, which department are we taking to improve, Fielding and batting the most pathetic spineless team on the face of earth, sorry & Pathetic team have no chane to win they crumble with spin , they crumble with pace their fielding and batting is disgraceful I feel shame i feel dissapointed i feel they let us down all the time in the last few years these are a bunch of clowns in the field we have to seriously get them whipped in the butt to get on winning mode again

  • Faheem on December 31, 2009, 15:03 GMT

    Nice suggestion Kamran sahab,Iam an indian and ardent fan of pak team.I have read most of the comments,they are very outrageous and pulling each other.I think Yousuf is doing good,he should make his eleven suitable to take on OOZ's from the resourses available to him.My opinion he should go with this Eleven. 1.Shoib / Kamran. 2.Salman. 3.Faisal. 4.Yousuf. 5.Umer Akmal. 6.F.Alam. 7.Kamran / Shoib. 8.Aamer. 9.Sami. 10.Asif. 11.Kanaria. The above team will give you variety of bowling options,Shoibs offspin and Alams L.Arm spin.Use Aamer in 5 Over fiery spells.This is the team if clicks can beat OOZ's.Protect Aamer from long spells causing injuries and waste the talent like Mohammed Zahid.

    Thanks,Take it easy folks.

  • pkfever on December 31, 2009, 15:02 GMT

    kamran bhye again very well said ..bt i am seeing no improvement in pakistan team ..if pk play like that and drop those chances ther will be agian 3-0 loss to pk ..pakistan nedd a genuine allrounder.we are still short

  • Anum on December 31, 2009, 15:00 GMT

    Very little hope that Pakistani team might surprise Aussies at the SCG. There might be a few moments of brilliance but you cannot expect a beleagured team to win against the formidable Aussies. The blame game will continue...blame it on the selectors, or lack of experience of players, or tough conditions, or lack of test cricket, or death of home series, or even T20! This is not going to lead us anywhere for sure...

  • Shahzad on December 31, 2009, 14:59 GMT

    Good analaysis. Biggest problem of Pakistan team is lack of any quality in domestic cricket. Second biggest problem is lack of selection on merit, I can bet A.Rauf, I. Farhat and F. Iqbal are in the team only on account of their high level terms in PCB.3rd problem is completely incompetent coach who can not understand the strategy of opposite team and can not make strategy accordingly, unaware of modern technology used.Forth problem, selection on the basis of statistics in domestic cricket but no abitliy to identify technique-based talent, example Khurm Manzoor. 5th, unnecessary rivaly of board with S.Akhtar who has abiltiy to win the math singly handedly. So what if he gets unfit after winning a test match in Australia.

  • ishrat on December 31, 2009, 14:58 GMT

    My ideal playing eleven and several others have included Afridi in the List maybe ijaz butt should be shown the list and afridi drafted in asap, especially as he is already in Australia. We obviously do not have younis for the second test so atleast get in S Malik and Fawad Alam

  • Nasser Ahmad on December 31, 2009, 14:27 GMT

    I read that Fawad Alam is being sent back from Australia. Can someone explain to me why this kid is being treated this way? He scored a big century in his first test and has played only two more tests since then. He is a useful bowler and a very good fielder and he is being sent back. If they have to send someone back, perhaps it should be Khurram Manzoor. We should probably persist with the two left handers for now. Rotation policy at the top has not worked for us. Let's stick with the two that we have and give them a long run. And please don't kill Fawad Alam's career before it even starts. He is a promising young cricketer who along with Umar Akmal and Aamer can be the future of Pakistan cricket. I would go as far as to say that he can be a future Pakistan captain. We should be nurturing talent like that.

  • Muzammil Mohsin on December 31, 2009, 14:14 GMT

    I agree with Ajay that our team is mentally one of the weakest teams in the world and that reflects in their ICC ranking. Also, no team can win many test matches if any, against good opposition after dropping so many catches. We were lucky in NewZealand. But then Australia is a far more superior side to New Zealand. Need to take make sure that at least the catches that come to hand are taken. Plus mentally need to get tougher. Temperament needs improvement. The problem is that I feel that most of the time the guyz are not confident in their abilities and when some from the team pull off something good I get the feeling that most of the guyz in the team go over board with it and start to think that they are very talented and they can do everything. But this doesn't happen. What our team need first and foremost is mental toughness and improvement in fielding. Most of other things can improve as well with improvement in these areas.

  • TaZ on December 31, 2009, 14:14 GMT

    YK plays at the crucial number 3 position, was the number 1 ranked test batsman 6 months ago and remains in the top 10. Scored a triple test ton this year against a SL attack including murali and mendis, averages over 50 in test cricket, was the best pak bat in the last tour of Aus and has played domestic cricket in Australia recently so knows the conditions.

    I can see why the selectors would need to think so hard about sending him to Aus for the second test...!?! I give up with these so called selectors..

  • SHAHID on December 31, 2009, 14:12 GMT

    Hats off for Iqbal Qasim for calling back Fawad Alam and not Khurram Manzoor. They are doing blunders. Its obvious that they are not gonna send Fawad back again for ODIs and T20s. We in Punjabi call it FITEY MUNH Iqbal Qasim and Ijaz Butt. Now at least send Taufiq Umar and Younis to Australia if you got a shame factor in your pesonalities.

  • nazaqat ali on December 31, 2009, 14:09 GMT

    this is ridicilous shame on the pcb why do you need test younis khans form hes got an average above 50 hes better then all the players in the team they need him he should be there for the second test form is temporary class is permanent mind you i dont no why the pcb get paid there messing everything up pakistan team is very talented but the only thing the pcb are doing are destroying youngsters carrers if these players were in england or australia i no for sure it would be number 1 in all forms of the game!

  • Yousuf Zaman on December 31, 2009, 14:03 GMT

    Kamran , after all You realze that Sami is a good option.When You are talking about track record, please consider,previous test wins in Madraas/series in Newzeland/ or the lone performer in last ODI World cup. In my oponion fittest and the fastest Pak bowler should be in eleven.

  • Saif Ahmed on December 31, 2009, 13:57 GMT

    Are we going waste a talent like Fawad? I just read that PCB is calling him back along with Abdur Rauf. It is complete injustice to the younster. He has not been given a good run yet and by dropping hom from the side, just like that, is not going to help him much, it will only shatter his confidence. He has done quite well in the tests, and I believe he should be preferred over Misbah or Faisal. Aamer, Umer and fawad are our future, please don't let them go to a waste.

  • Saddam on December 31, 2009, 13:54 GMT

    I agree with all the points you mentioned. Younis Khan may not be in top form but he is more likely to score big than all the batsmen except Yousaf. We have been losing wickets in 30s 40s and 50s. Younis Khan is big scorer and he can certainly change a test match with a big score. He should be in the team as the reason for his lack of runs,captaincy, is already out of the way. If a person can change the total outlook of a team, that player is Shahid Afridi. Not only he can attack opposing team with bat and ball, he can also be very agile/aggressive in the field. He is a sort of person who can change a game on his own. Bob Woolmer used him very well at number 6 and after his bowling has improved considerably in the last few years, he is a perfect choice at number 6. Even if he doesnt score big, he is sure to perform well as a bowler. With his inclusion, Pakistan team's outlook will change and it will be a lot more balanced side, then it is now. Yousaf, he is just a call away. Please!

  • A.R.Zaidi on December 31, 2009, 13:47 GMT

    Why don't we admit that Pakistan could not defeat a weakened Aussie team? After the end of second test between Australia and West Indies, it was clear that Australians r beatable. Pakistan just needed to pick up a balanced team and batsmen needed to apply only. And further, Pakistan had to convert half chances into chances. All the ills started from poor team selection. For reasons unknown to captain only, Omar Gul was dropped and Raoof was included. Danish was sidelined which left us amazed. Idon't know why Yousaf is insisting so much on playing Misbah. Despite the fact he got a fifty in the second innings, i feel he is neither a good test player nor a good fielder. Omar Gul might not be in his best form nowadays yet he is still a better bowler than Raoof with so much experience behind him. Due to dropped catches and poor captaincy, Ponting was handed over the advantage on very first day and Ponting gleefully accepted it and never faultered onward. Thanks Yousaf! said Ponting

  • nasir raza dar on December 31, 2009, 13:42 GMT

    As I have mentioned earlier Mr Abbasi the kind of people siting at the helm of cricket affairs you will see many laughable things in future.Moreover you mentioned about 10 lessons from MCG,for whom, these people,there is a saying in Urdu"BHAINS KEY AAGEY BEEN BAJANA"so same you are doing.Mr chairman is in Larkana to save his chairmanship & rest go to hell he dam care about,Selection committee says Younis should prove himself but can anybody ask them what Malik is doing over there, did he proved himself despite given chances time & again whereas Younis is a person who tried to gave 100% even with a broken finger. One can do nothing but to pray for the Pakistan cricket until & unless there are revolutionary changes occurs from TOP to bottom.Moreover if anybody want that team should win then they have to include Younis & Afridi in the playing eleven as in Afridi you have a seasoned batsman as well as a competent bowler in your ranks.THINK ABOUT THIS MR CHAIRMAN & CHIEF SELECTOR THINK.

  • Ayaz Bhat '' KASHMIR" on December 31, 2009, 13:39 GMT

    Amazing Say..Why dont U join them as a Psychologist.I belive Pakistan has everything that they need to beat Australia except a positive mind set up, having a psychologist in the team will help them.. I also want Farhat out of the team,he doesnt have the technique to paly at this level. I am also stunned the way PCB is behaving, they are giving time to players like Faisal Iqbal to regain form at this level, i believe it would have been better if same time would have been given to Younis,because he has proven himself time and again and he just needs one big innings to get his form back.. Guys please have a strong middle order and believe me u are far better than other teams who have recently got good rankings... all the best to u guys for next test.. and it doesnt matter to me whether u win or not , i just love watching u guys on the field. I was 7 years old when Imran khan won the world cup since then I crazily follow cricket and undoublety I am pakistan's biggest fan.. cheers ..

  • SHAHID on December 31, 2009, 13:38 GMT

    You include SAMI in playing 11 and you will see an other Rauf performance. He is no better than he was used to be. You bring in AFRIDI and he won't be able to score big on Australian wickets. I won't waste Kamran Akmal at the top as I expect him to score big low in the order. I will keep the opners as they have been playing 10 -15 overs before losing the first wicket and as it goes for Pakistan, its the best you can get these days. BUT then I will take AFRIDI as a bowler to replace Saeed Ajmal and Umar Gul to replace Rauf. Younis is must, as a batsman, part time bowler , fielder and as a confidence booster. My team for Sydney will be following; Salman Butt Imran Farhat Younis Khan Mohammad Yousef Umar Akmal Kamran Akmal Afridi Aamer Gul Kaneria Asif

  • ys on December 31, 2009, 13:30 GMT

    Its quite clear that Mo Yo is making the argument against T20 becuase he is loked out of the IPL because of his ICL association. I think its a case of sour grapes where he does not want other pakistani cricketers to earn some buck. Its quite obvious and I am surprised that no one is commenting on that.

  • rosstopher on December 31, 2009, 13:23 GMT

    Pakistan bowled a lot better in the second innings than in the first. Aamer bowled with aggression and pace and he got his reward, he has set the standard of bowling for himself and other pace bowlers at the SCG. With batting, in the first innings no one looked dangerous except for Umar Akmal, he play well and caused problems for the Australian bowlers, however his inexperience led to him giving his wicket away. He should also be an example to other batsmen. For the test @ SCG we need Afridi and Malik and NEED to be better in the field. My team would be: 1. Salman Butt 2. Fawad Alam 3. Shoaib Malik 4. Mohammad Yusuf 5. Umar Akmal 6. Shahid Afridi 7. Kamran Akmal 8. Mohmmad Aamer 9. Mohammad Sami 10. Mohammad Asif 11. Danish Kaneria

  • Arvind on December 31, 2009, 13:21 GMT

    You have missed the most important point. Pakistan must improve on their pathetic fielding, and especially their catching. If the catches dropped on Day 1 were taken, Australia may not have gone so far ahead, and the game could have been a lot more closer.

  • Ami Ahmed on December 31, 2009, 13:20 GMT

    c'm on people chill out... Pakistan will learn to adapt...eventually.

    nowt wrong with the team...leave the team as it is, however rauf needs to go, may be bring back sami/gul. kaneria can come in for ajmal, if fit.

    as far as faisal and misbah are concerned, leave them. They r making runs, so....keep 'em!!! butt/farhat??? who else have u got??? no one.

    whats the hurry anyways...not played much test cricket in he last few years, so let 'em get used to it!!!

    But... Malik, Rauf, bury 'em!!!

    I START THE CAMPAIGN TO BRING BACK RANA...I KNOW HES KAK...BUT SO WHAT>>> i miss his khota-implant-hair!!!

  • wakeel on December 31, 2009, 13:17 GMT

    Once again very well written Mr.Kamran. But this time i would disagree with you a little bit on point no.3. I think selectors are sounding very logical and acting very fair. I am as desperate as you to see Younus in Australia but the thing is hes not in form regardless of his experience and capability on what basis will the selectors justify sending him there? i think they are very rational and setting the right example and above all giving importance to their domestic cricket that perform there and then join the team. Even if Younus is send there and he performs it would set a wrong example. At one point of time we idealise australian domestic structure and even the indian structure now that they carry a vision and a system and now that our selectors and creating a kind of policy and criteria for selection we should appreciate that. by this i dont mean all is going well and the future is bright but lets have a start to this.

  • kazim mohammed on December 31, 2009, 13:05 GMT

    Kamran,you must be a supreme optimist for believing that Pakistan can bounce back and defeat Australia.They couldn't do it when Ponting made it easy for them with two sporting declarations,chasing 252 on the final day on a placid pitch would have been easy for any good team.Pakistan would struggle to defeat Bangladesh or any lowly ranked team.We know from your recent blogs that you are a Younis Khan apologist,rushing him back in the team isn't going to make any difference.Pakistan at the moment is the most useless cricket team,they've got the most useless batsmen barring one or two,the most useless bowlers barring one or two, the most useless fielders barring none,and the most useless coaching staff and cricket board.All in all that works out to a useless cricket team.I hope that they can find some way to halt the uselessness in 2010.

  • ihsan on December 31, 2009, 12:54 GMT

    Its really laughable to prove a form in domestic cricket. Firstly, great players come into form in big games. Secondly, looking to the standards of our domestic cricket, showing a form is worth nothing. There are players who have performed very well at the domestic level but they could not prove it at the international level.

    The other reason, selectors tell is that who to replace by younus because all players have made runs. In my view, a batsman who get starts and does not go for a big score does not deserve any place in the test cricket. because most often a batsman gets out early. most of our batsmen got a start and then they gave away their wickets.

  • Athar Sherwani on December 31, 2009, 12:53 GMT

    Wishful thinking will not get us anywhere in Test cricket. Yousaf has put his fingure on the achille heel that our batsman do not have the technical skill and temperament any longer to play Test cricket due to distractions and greed for quicker and easier formats which require "tulla" shots i.e. hit or miss. Domestic cricket structure is very weak due to our esteemed top cricketers consider playing at domestic level an insult, current example is past captain who did not play apart from the final in which he did not last very long. Future looks bleak and with the current top PCB management hamstrung with apathy and lack of original thinking, we need a miracle but does that happen nowadays?

  • Ajay on December 31, 2009, 12:39 GMT

    Pak fans must not expect much from this team . The fans think that Pak team is some champ team, but it is one of the most mentally weak teams around now. they r gonna lose few series from now get on with it.

  • Usman Zia on December 31, 2009, 12:38 GMT

    I agree with you but would like to add a few suggestions of my own. 1. It is almost the same team that was so ruthless to England in 2005. All you need is to being in YOunus and Afridi and that will be it. Then only Inzmam will be missing who has been replaced swiftly by Umar Akmal. Shoib has been replaced by Aamer. 2. Why would the selectors not chose the best team available? Afridi should have been told that either he plays in all formats or not play at all. He is the best allrounder we have and he is playing domestic 20/20. What nonsense is that? And you are right about Younus. He should have been forced to go to Australia, rather selectors are checking his form in our pathetic domestic cricket. 3. Taufeeq Umar is much better batsman than sifarshi Imran Farhat who's father in law has got him in all formats. Having Imran in the team is a joke. 4. Its about time we get a fielding and batting coach. Waqar should be head coach with seperate batting and fielding coaches.

  • Aleem on December 31, 2009, 12:20 GMT

    11. Catch it dammit!

  • Wasim Abbas on December 31, 2009, 12:14 GMT

    rightly said Kamran ,younis should return,kamran akmal should open instead of imran farhat ,and why the hell are we not playing afridi he is world class spinner and i think he is better than faisal iqbal as a batsman and to top it of with kind of enthusiasm he has is what pakistan needs at the moment. please bring afridi in the team

  • Marlo on December 31, 2009, 12:14 GMT

    IQBAL KASIM BUDHU, if Sydney requires 2 spinners then Younis is very much needed to be the 3rd seemers and as one down batsman being one of the best spin player in the world. Yours and Ijaz Butt's ego is not doing any good to pakistan. Half of the Pakistan team is not peforming for last 2 years but non of them were asked to play domestic before going to NZ. You should be ashamed of having selected Faisal, Farhat, Khurram and Rauf to play Australia and sending the team without any allrounder. Believe me, I have never been so agressive, but after what you two are doing to Pakistan cricket, I could really kick you balls.

  • Wasim Abbas on December 31, 2009, 12:06 GMT

    rightly said Kamran ,younis should return,kamran akmal should open instead of imran farhat ,and why the hell are we not playing afridi he is world class spinner and i think he is better than faisal iqbal as a batsman and to top it of with kind of enthusiasm he has is what pakistan needs at the moment. please bring afridi in the team

  • Coeurlion on December 31, 2009, 12:02 GMT

    Great article Kamran. Going from an Aussie point of view, #7 stands out. I wanted to see Afridi! He should not be playing for SAust when his country needs him. With test averages of 37 and 34 (bat/ball respectively), puts him in all-rounder capability. He would definitely bolster the batting, and as you said, he is an international class bowler. He can add flexibility. Aamer and Umar Akmal are great talents... but will need careful management and mentoring. At 17 & 19 years old, they WILL make mistakes (to the exasperation of some Pak fans). But they are serving apprenticeships. But what you didn't mention Kamran, was the fielding. It was AWFUL! 'Catches win matches' goes the old saying, and desperate fielding and accurate throwing puts pressure on batsmen. In a way, good fielding is a 'free' bowler. Maybe the PCB should hire a baseball coach like we did. If you can forward this to them, please do. I want epic battles between the Southern Cross and the Crescent for years yet to come!

  • ali on December 31, 2009, 11:53 GMT

    Although i agree with diagnosis of Point 6 that Farhat is simply not at the level of playing test cricket in Australia, and probably never will be. I dont agree with the alternative of having an out of form and unreliable player such as Malik opening. Also it would be unfair to ask a keeper to open in a test match. I cant think of one example of this being done sucessfully in past.

  • Irfan Mayani on December 31, 2009, 11:33 GMT

    I think having Kamran akmal open the innings gives you an attacking option first up. Today test cricket is different. Look Arnd and u have gayle, sehwag, dilshan etc. right up the order. Considering Younis not making it to sydney( who should hav been on the tour party right from the start, but at the same time i dont agree replacing people in the middle of the tour. ) My XI would be 1. Kamran Akmal 2. Salman Butt 3. Faisal Iqbal 4. Yusuf 5. Umer Akmal 6. Misbah 7 Shoaib Malik / Afridi(if available) 8.Aamer 9.Asif 10. Gul / Sami ( choose the one who is in form accoring to waqar younis) 11. Kaneria

    Younis should never have been dropped. If MoYo needed younis then he should have requested before the start of first test. Not after a single failure of the first innings.

    There has to be a systematic approach somwehre , u cant just pick an drop people after every single match

  • KG VENKATESH on December 31, 2009, 11:25 GMT

    It is not all diffcult to beat Austalia in Austalia,it is proved again and again .Pakisthan should pull on as team.

  • ahad ali on December 31, 2009, 11:24 GMT

    IF you continue to ignore talent like ASIM KAMAL and players like IMRAN FARHAT AND FAISAL IQBAL keep getting test calls ..i am afraid the fate of pakistani cricket will be the same.....

  • Abdul K Hussain on December 31, 2009, 11:14 GMT

    Kamran you along with a lot of Pakistani experts seem to be way to enamored by Umer Akmal. A precocious talent he is, but a test batsmen his in not, and unless he can start using his head a bit more he will never be. I like the Afridi idea though, dropping Farhat (despite his obvious shortcomings) is pointless when I dont think Malik will offer any improvement. I think playing Kamran and 3 and dropping Faisal (or maybe even Fawad) to 7 could be the answer though. Gul/Sami and Kaneria in for Ajmal and Rauf is a no brainer. In an ideal world the correct squad (in batting order) would be: Butt, Farhat, K Akmal, Moyo, Misbah, Faisal/Fawad, Afridi, Aamer, Sami/Gul, Kaneria, Asif

  • shafiq Ashraf on December 31, 2009, 11:10 GMT

    Time is short we need to get our act together quickly and put out a team that has a competitive chance at the SCG that. MUST INVOLVE UMAR GUL, YOUNIS KHAN,KANERIA AND AFRIDI. I have been screaming for Afridi to be in the test team since the 20/20 world cup. As you rightly said he's in Aus for the love of god put him in the team. Will this happen I doubt it.

  • zahid malik on December 31, 2009, 11:08 GMT

    i completely agree with your views. yousef,s approch should be aggreisve in remaining series first and they should try shoiab malik as a opener at the place of imran farhat . he is technically not so sound as opener should be. shoiab malik can bowl also and he can other option in spin. ajamal bowled well but i think he need more experience in tests and kaneria will play at his place . mohammad sami should play at the place of abdur rauf as sami has pace and all australian pitches has bit of bounce . they should also improve the feilding especially catching otherwise the results will be same like melbourne .

  • riz on December 31, 2009, 10:59 GMT

    can someone please tell me why Shahid Afridi is not in the team, he is surely more of a batsman than imran farhat will ever be, Afridi's average in test is 34 which is not bad at all looking at how the current opening stand is doing, even if he does not open he can be a handy batsman down the order and he is a great spinner who has troubled australia in the recent past, may be our so called selectors know better but the way i look at it, its just common sense. and y would you play a bowler like Abdur Rauf. ???? well best of luck to our team out there and hope they do well at the SCG.

  • Imran on December 31, 2009, 10:58 GMT

    Brilliant every u said I 100% agree with... Imran Farhat needs to go, Afridi needs to play test cricket for his bowling (and also his test average is 37), Younis needs to play and captain the team. I think though yasir hammed should be brought into the team to solve the opening problem and i think pakistan should also recall Asim Kamal and Umar Gul should player instead of rauf. I think that pakistans main problem in cricket is not the players never has been but i think they have the worst selectors in world cricket.

  • M Zaman on December 31, 2009, 10:58 GMT

    I agree with Kamran- Yusuf, as a captain, very indifferent, submissive and inferior;however, the key question is-can this Pakistan team play better? With their Captain's attitude and current player selecton the anser is probably"no"! It is quite unlikely either of two upcoming tests would be drawn and the odd is Pakistan is likely going to lose both of them. If you lose the game anyway- so why do not you get more aggressive and positive to winning? One more thing Kamran, if you could pass that to PCB- would Afridi do any worse than near-comatose Mishabh, Imran Farhat and Salman Butt? Australia converted a typical one-dayer as a perfect and matching winning test opener, you know who I mean: Shane Watson. Pakistan obviously is missinng Afridi's guile, fire power of winning attitude, excellent fielding, over all around perforance that aforementioned three never had. I wonder if Yunis and Afridi are not availabale,this Pakistan could stay out there until day 4 of either game.

  • Mohammad Bashir on December 31, 2009, 10:56 GMT

    Good Comments. It is mentionable that I am from Afghanistan and I always support Pakistan cricket team and pray many times for them but never worked for Pakistan after the 2W retired. I think Pakistan Cricket team selectors are doing wrong Job for not decided to send Y Khan, Younus Khan has a high technics and can easily adopt with the situation of Austraila and he already showed better performance when he was in Austraila tour last time. Definitly he deserve to go but its up to the selectors. for the coming test Pakistan should play Danish Kaneria instead Saeed Ajmal, Mohammad Sami/Umar Gul Instead Abdul Rauf and I became the selector of Pakistan team I will not allowed Imran Farhat to play in test cricket due to his technics so, Shoim Malik is there and he should be play inplace of Imran Farhat and also I am confused the short selection of Faisal Iqbal even he played well and let Misbah to come early his position is too late. opening Shoib Malik & But 3rd Faisal 4th Misbah 5th Yousuf

  • Umair Dar on December 31, 2009, 10:48 GMT

    Kamran - I agree 100% with the points you make and the team selection is incredibly frustrating and in my opinion the main reason for our loss. In my opinion, our first test XI should be the following:

    1. Salman Butt 2. Kamran Akmal 3. Younis Khan 4. Mohammad Yousaf 5. Umar Akmal 6. Misbah Ul Haq 7. Shahid Afridi 8. Mohammad Aamer 9. Umar Gul 10. Danish Kaneria 11. Mohammad Asif

    Having Afridi in there as the all-rounder is absolutely crucial for the balance and it is criminal that our test bowling attack is missing a man who is currently the best leg spin bowler in the world, let alone in Pakistan. Having Kamran Akmal open is not ideal but it's the best solution we have in my opinion. Misbah may be replaced by another sooner or later and Umar Gul may make way for Sami if he's not in form.

    I desperately hope the selectors finally grow a brain and send Younis, but also ask Afridi to join the squad. With the above team, I can see Pakistan winning the remaining 2 games.

  • Muhammad Imran Bhatti on December 31, 2009, 10:46 GMT

    For Mohammad Aamer ,as he is a good bowler and an asset for Pakistan .I want to advise him to concentrate on his fitness.The management should not overuse him.He need more attention from physio DD of pakistan Team.Also If Wasim Akram reading this comment, I want to request him that he must help Aamer to develop variety of balls. As far as Umer Gul and Mohammad sami matter is concerned,Umer Gul need to learn ,how to bowl in test cricket.Excess of one dayers and twenty 20 cricket is having negative effect on his test cricket ability.About Mohammad sami, he also need to concentrate on line and length.Speed is not everything.If you have good line and length,135-140 kmh is enough for any batsman in the world. Thanks Regard Muhammad Imran Bhatti

  • adil on December 31, 2009, 10:39 GMT

    yeah its brilliantly described here....surly these r some points to ponder over for future of test cricket of pakistan...n offcourse YOUNIS KHAN should be back in the team at No.3 position and it wud giv boast to pak as australians are also aware of Younis khan abililty as an experienced plyr with brilliant average of 50 in test... and to me i thnk Pak shud play with two spinners...ajmal and kaneria...with two fast bwlers Amir and Asif coz of history of Sydney pitch for over the years now....and if yunis khan is bak thn surly Pak have a real chance to win vs Aus at sydney...bt i must say to do dis ATTITUDE shud b positive and attacking othrwis without dis even quality sides can loss d match...thts it...

  • Numan Zahoor on December 31, 2009, 10:36 GMT

    Mr. Abbasi, I totaly agree with whatever you have written. I just don't understand why Shahid Afridi is not in pakistan team at this present time. He has shown in the past that he can play test cricket and he has shown the temprament required to do so. Secondly Yousuf needs to be more aggresive in the field since he got a laid back attitude that has never worked again Australia. Thridly we need to get rid of Imran Farhat and Faisal Iqbal. As you have mentioned there is no harm in trying Kamran Akmal or Shoaib Malik at the top. On SCG if i had a choice i would have droped Saeed Ajmal and Abdul Rauf and would have selected Shoaib to be used as a allrouder along with Danish since he has the capability to mesmarise the opposition with his bowling on a good turing pitch and he has done it enough times. Finally we need to believe that we can beat Australia all we need is the right people to do it plus a game plan on how to get rid of Shane Watson specially.

  • Salman Yunus on December 31, 2009, 10:26 GMT

    I agree with most of your assessments but bringing in Younis at a time when Faisal has started growing in confidence would be unfair to him, his performance in the second innings at MCG was impressive (undone by a special delivery). Afridi should make himself available for SCG (this will give Pakistan the balance taht they've been missing). Hoping to see Pakistan perform with a little more confidence in the new year & beyond.

  • Nassta on December 31, 2009, 10:19 GMT

    It is obvious bounce is the key to winning in Australia. Swing bowlers do not succeed - England do it in the Ashes every four years, turning up with the likes of Anderson and Hoggard. Even the great Waqar Younis' average and strike rate is twice as bad in Australia compared to his overall career. Why? Kookaburra ball. The key to winning in Australia is the ability to bowl with pace and extract bounce with accuracy. Steyn, Ishant Sharma and going back a bit Ambrose did it. Aamir and Gul do it. All the Australian bowlers do it and are successful. Legspinners also get wickets, not because the pitches particularly spin but because the art is naturally conducive to the extraction of greater bounce. Sami bowled well on the last tour of Australia too. Also, Aamir bowling so many overs age 17 is far from ideal given he has already had a stress fracture. K.Akmal at needs to bat at no6 and a batter dropped so Aamir/Afridi no7. Forget the batsmen - we need to protect the bowlers!

  • Salman on December 31, 2009, 10:17 GMT

    Kamran! I think you have missed a point. Over the years,Pakistani batsmen are as much vulnerable against spinners as they are against quality pace and swing bowling. They have horrible record against quality spinners like Warne, Kumble, and Murali. Not only that, the average spinners like MacGill, Panesar, Paul Harris, Herath and now Hauritz have caused too much trouble for these batsmen. I will not be surprised if club level spinner like Nathan Hauritz ends up with 10 wicket haul in Sydney Test.

  • fawad on December 31, 2009, 10:16 GMT

    u r right kamran bhai, i think they should get afridi and younis back in team for sydney. unless a miracle happens i dont see this pakistani team winning in sydney

  • habeeb on December 31, 2009, 10:00 GMT

    All the credits are only going to pakistan team selectors , no one could not blame the players.Plesae wipe out all of the pakistan team selectors who has that right authority TEST TEAM

    1.salman butt 2.yashir hameed 3.younis khan 4.mohammad yousuf 5.umar akmal 6.kamaran akmal 7.abdul razak / shahid afridi 8.mohammad aameer 9.danis kaneria 10.umar gul 11.mohammad asif

  • nabeel on December 31, 2009, 9:57 GMT

    pakistan shuld play with some confidence tey must learn from indians and they also called afridi malik and younais i think malik has better tempament as campare to imran farahati can,t understand why selecter pic farahat in test we only pray for pakistan.i think a child has better sense as copare to selectors of pakistan

  • Syed M. on December 31, 2009, 9:57 GMT

    I wholeheartedly agree with all of your above views. Especially concerning Shahid Afridi's improvement as a legspinner who can be an asset even in the test squad. Also Pakistan didn't play their natural attacking style of cricket for the first two days. Umar Gul has to be brought back ( I just can't fathom the excuses that were thrown around for his exclusion considering he has been the spearhead of the attack in recent times and also the most experienced) and so too Danish Kaneria. Pakistan has to go in with five bowlers and if that means accomodating Shoaib malik at he top of order then so be it. At least Shoaib is more experienced and could be used as the fifth bowler. Also Yousuf has to be more imaginative and think on his feet. He didn; give farhat a decent run with the bowl and Aamer was i felt being over bowled along with Asif a direct consequence of the skipper's lack of confidence in Rauf's ability as a wicket taking option.

  • Faraz (the first Faraz on all of Kamran's blogs) on December 31, 2009, 9:52 GMT

    I agree (as always) however, Sami should be in - Pakistan team mgmt. decided to play Rauf over Gul -- can someone explain how they saw him in better form and why is Danesh overlooked for Ajmal the second time in a row (and we paid for it dearly) - Ajmal is not in the same league as Danesh

    Danesh should play in SCG test with Asif, Aamer and Sami as pacers.

    Farhat is riding one lucky outing - he should be dropped for Malik or Fawad Alam

    Yousuf, I am sorry to say, is not the captain material we need, it has to be Younis or Afridi should be named captain in all forms of the game

  • Syed M. on December 31, 2009, 9:50 GMT

    I wholeheartedly agree with all of your above views. Especially concerning Shahid Afridi's improvement as a legspinner who can be an asset even in the test squad. Also Pakistan didn't play their natural attacking style of cricket for the first two days. Umar Gul has to be brought back ( I just can't fathom the excuses that were thrown around for his exclusion considering he has been the spearhead of the attack in recent times and also the most experienced) and so too Danish Kaneria. Pakistan has to go in with five bowlers and if that means accomodating Shoaib malik at he top of order then so be it. At least Shoaib is more experienced and could be used as the fifth bowler. Also Yousuf has to be more imaginative and think on his feet. He didn; give farhat a decent run with the bowl and Aamer was i felt being over bowled along with Asif a direct consequence of the skipper's lack of confidence in Rauf's ability as a wicket taking option.

  • Raheel on December 31, 2009, 9:28 GMT

    Muhammad Yousuf has issued a burning question of pakistani players ability of playing Test Matches. The fact is all of our selectors Coach and team management consists of OLD persons they dont know the difference between Test, ODI's and T 20. And the news of interest is all the current Test players of Pakistan National side has request to include in IPL (Remember that IPL consist of only T 20 format). The only solutation of this crisis is to take cricket as science, make three teams for all three formats of the game, and prepare specialist in all fields and do not include the ablaze ICL players in national side as their track records shows their limited cricket ability.

  • rimtu on December 31, 2009, 9:27 GMT

    No matter what you say Kamran, when a team drops so many catches they don't deserve to win. Pakistan has been doing this all year long, matches after matches. Where is the improvement? Yes batting failed, but the fielders failed even more. And every catches dropped proved crucial. Watson was dropped twice as far as I recall. He was 120*. In my opinion, these dropped catches are the sole reason that Pakistan did not do better.

  • atif on December 31, 2009, 9:27 GMT

    i think younis talk should be stopped whatever resources we have avaialable we have to back them up.faisal iqbal played preety good at number 3,rauf should be replaced with sami or gull

  • Faisal Jaan on December 31, 2009, 9:22 GMT

    Afridi is a much better bowler than Ajmal and Kaneria and must return to test cricket. If senior players like Afridi and Younis wil not take the burden, test cricket will suffer in Pakistan. I also feel that Fawad Alam should have been given more chances. He averages 57 in first class which is not something ignorable. If Pakistan can bear Malik's, Farhat's, Butt's and Faisal's failures for a decade, then they should have patience to give confidence to promising players like Alam. Finally, I don't feel Sami will make any difference. Based on his record in more than 30 tests, any selector in the world would have asked him to play club cricket but it is only possible in in Pak cricket.

  • ismail on December 31, 2009, 9:19 GMT

    What i think Pakistan only need to improve their fielding then only they can win. catches wins the matches :)

  • Imran Zia on December 31, 2009, 9:14 GMT

    What did Imran Farhat, Salman Butt, and faisal Iqbal do to be in the side having averages below 30? What did fawad alam do wrong to be out of the playing eleven The problem with Pakistan seems to be the balance and they are playing too many batsmen.we need an all rounder like poor little Yasir Arafat. After taking a five wicket haul against the indians on a flat wicket he has just been out of favour. Afridi has other agendas on his menu and after a sterling performace in the semis of CT Rana is also out. The way Imran farhat has been batting he can be replaced by any bowler. Just close your eyes and swing! well done selectors!

  • bilal butt on December 31, 2009, 9:13 GMT

    i love pakistan and i love pakistani cricketers butt they should prove that they also love pakistan

  • Badar on December 31, 2009, 9:02 GMT

    I think pakistan should play with three pacers and two spinners at sydney. Aamer, Asif, Gul, Kaneria and Ajmal instead of going with 4 bowlers. This formidable attack is capable of bowling Australia out under 250 runs. Otherwise if Pakistan goes with 4 specialist bowlers, they may end up given away 350+ runs before getting them out and extra batsman would not be of much help then. And Yousaf Please play attacking cricket like ponting. Specially have 4,5 men around the bat when spinners are operating.

  • Farrukh on December 31, 2009, 8:50 GMT

    All will be well if right 11 are playing and all 11 are fielding. I think Australia is not formidable for all teams but for teams like Pakistan where selectors are not loyal to country but they are to big sums of money. If they don't want one to play, "he is injured". Guy takes 7 wickets in an innings and the next game he is not playing. Even a kid knows there will be reverse swing in Melbourne yet Gul doesn't play. We know our batting is failing and one of only three good batsmen (2 yo yos and Malik) and Malik is rested as if he walked from New Zealand to Melbourne. We hire a fielding coach who was not better than the worst one in current 14-15. Yes he is the best bowler but what do you do with Aqib. Oh may be he keeps scores if any we score. May be it is great plan to bring a captain who is not on the scene yet? May All Might bring some sense to our selectors and they can send 11 "players" to field, bat, and bowl in Sydney Long live Pakistan

  • Bismillah Momand on December 31, 2009, 8:43 GMT

    Excellent article, I hope the PCB notices your suggestions.

    - Definately Afridi should be recalled, he could be Pak's answer to Aus's Watson.

    - Kamran must open with Salman. Farhat is useless. Younus has to be recalled for the one down position.

    -Rauf was good for nothing. Umar Gul or M. Sami must replace him. So should Saeed be replaced by Danish. Saeed is not good in test matches.

  • EAMiran on December 31, 2009, 8:40 GMT

    While I tend to agree with most of points on the list, there are some reservations. They are as follows: Point 2: Rauf was obviously a poor choice; however Sami is a tried and tested failure in test cricket. Even his domestic figures are mediocre. Gul has developed into a 1 trick pony - short ball followed by a yorker. This works in T20, not in test cricket and not against Australia. Get unfit Akhtar on the plane! Even 10 overs an innings from him may make the difference. Point 5: While Kamran Akmal may be used as an opener, Malik's technique against agressive pace bowling is abysmal and to consider him opening the batting is ludicrous. Fawad should be tried at No.3 instead of Faisal, who also looks suspect on bouncier wickets. The obvious "lesson" that was missed in the list was that the fielding was pathetic, and may have cost us the match. Dramatic improvement is required. The core of the test team must be Yunus, Yusuf, 2 Akmals, Aamer, Asif, & maybe Kaneria & Fawad.

  • vineet srivastava on December 31, 2009, 8:37 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

  • Sufian on December 31, 2009, 8:33 GMT

    You have got this one right Kamran. I dont get it why Iqbal Qasim is not allowing younis khan to play in the test???. I am a Pakistani who is living in Melbourne. To my disbelief i was shocked seeing the performance of our batting line up. I think it is not the matter of ego's here. Country pride comes first this record what we currently have against aussies can be improved we can improve it by having a solid number three in our Team. Also Yousuf has to learn how to be aggressive i have noticed when ever Pakistani bowlers use to go down the pitch to chat with the Aussie batsman, Yousuf was the first one to run up to them and call them back. Aussies have been doing this for ages now and they do it every now and than when they feel they are about to loose a game or are in a position to do so. I am a very honest fan of Pakistan cricket team i watch every single game they play, I wonder for how long i have to be disappointed by them. No Eggo's please let every guy play who deserve a spot.

  • srivathsan on December 31, 2009, 8:32 GMT

    I fully agree with you.I am glad you echoed my views on yunis khan .It is ridiculous to ask him to prove in domestic cricket when he has an average of 50+ & highly admired in india & overseas for his ability & authority.Pakistan should come out of 20/20 mindset & bring back test materials like yasir hamid.Bowling is very good & i vote for umargul & not sami.umar akmal is an exciting find & he resembles sachin of yester years.He should be groomed properly & not made to carry the whole burden.He needs patience at test level & the seniors should guide him properly.Pakistan should go for talent hunt for test materials & groom them.Fielding has to improve & this is one thing they need not match indians.younis khan should be there for the second test.With position they were in,pakistan should have won the first test comfortably.

  • Syed Muhammad Azmat Shah on December 31, 2009, 8:25 GMT

    Firstly you have to ask cricket board why was Abdur Rauf in the side?what good has he done even at National Level?Also maybe Muhammad Sami has taken Wickets in Quaid Azam Trophy Final..But i remember those days when Muhammad Sami's Over would start and i would turn my television off..he has poor bowling average..I would always hate him for his past performances(Specially against Sehwag in Multan)..He never can be a ray of Hope for us..dont mention his name please...Why cant our selectors choose Aamir like young bowlers?Sohail Khan is one of them...Also try to devise a way of punishing your batsmen if they play poor shots...like Salman Butt's 2nd Innings dismissal?why did he play that ball across the line?what is straight bat for? why do you try to flick straight deliveries on the leg side?And About Younis Khan..why is he being made part of Pakistan One day side ..he is our best test batsman...not of ODI's..Be honest to yourself..Should Younis be part of Pak ODI team..?

  • Muddassir on December 31, 2009, 8:24 GMT

    I think Yousaf wasn't defensive in his approach. Infact it appeared that in trying to kill his natural defensive instinct, he overkilled the attacking approach. Especially during second innings batting. He should have asked Kamran and Rauf to try to hold back instead of going all out 20/20 style cricket. Positive cricket doesn't mean trying to hit every ball out of the ground. It can be played like Misbah played in the first innings. Yousaf should have taken most of the strike once Kamran was out. I agree that in his mind Yousaf still thought that Australians are too good and that affected the outcome of the match. Shahid's question is very interesting but he has repeatedly said(while in Australia) that he isn't interested in Test cricket. However Yousaf can talk to him to find out about it just like he did for Younis. Pakistan team has definite potential of winning but I believe we need a psychiatrist to get that positive feeling in Yousaf's mind.

  • Arsalan Khalil on December 31, 2009, 8:22 GMT

    Lemme put in my 5 cents here, the only time i saw pakistan actually stabilize its batting and bowling altogether was when they had kamran opening with anyone really, making room for that extra allrounder, spinner, pacer we need to strengthen the team all round. My observation so far is every time we see an opener fail we pick other names. Please Listen carefully now, IT DOESNT MATTER WHO OPENS, look they all are the same and none have gotten any better over the years. Imran, salman, Yasir, Nasir, Taufeeq etc etc all average the same 20 runs, have almost the same strike rate, and honestly the way they play we should not make room for two, just one failure is enough. Let kamran start the innings with anyone i dont care, but include razzaq, tanvir, danish, gul in the team to strenghten our bowling side. Remember how pakistan was playing in champions trophy and t20, when razzaq came and gave us that lacking team combination. Dont waste a valuable players spot to an ineffective openner pls

  • Ajay on December 31, 2009, 8:16 GMT

    Pak have lost 10 in a row to OZ now. Now they just have to try and focus on good test batting and shd bring kaneria back or else it wud be 3-0 to OZ before they know it.

  • Abdul Rehman on December 31, 2009, 8:15 GMT

    Kamran bhai, Why are there are players like Asim Kamal, Muhammad Ayub, Khalid Latif sitting at home. http://stats.cricinfo.com/ci/engine/records/batting/most_runs_career.html?class=4;id=2009;type=year They scored the most runs last year. We can't win with this batting line-up. Misbah proved that experience is everything. Or we could just draft in the rest of the Akmal brothers and hope for the best.

  • Imran Ali on December 31, 2009, 8:13 GMT

    Continued from my previous post..... Send a warning to Senior Akmal not to throw away his wicket by playing reckless shots just because his friend Shoaib Malik is not included in playing XI.

  • Imran Ali on December 31, 2009, 8:10 GMT

    Here is my suggestions: 1. Call Afrid back and remove Misbah 2. Call Taufiq Umar and remove Farhat 3. Call Younis Khan and remove Faisal Iqbal.

    Afridi's return is very crucial for a well balanced team.

  • Milan on December 31, 2009, 8:05 GMT

    Exactly right Mr. Abbasi. How can Pakistan compete if they even do not make their combination right? I do not understand why they pick Rauf instead of Gul and why are they sticking with Faisal Iqbal? If they have to give chance to him, they should have pick him in the tour of India or Sri Lanka where in the flattest of track in the world he might score runs and have the confidence but Australia is not the land to experiment. And why the selectors are not sending Younis to Australia is out of the mind. If you ask to prove his form to the batsman who average 50+ in test in you are mad. Where is middle order batsman Asim Kamal and the opening batsman Yaseer Hameed? Everybody knows Pak wins the match with their bowling not batting but to see the star bowler like Gul sitting in the bench is hard to believe. Anyway past is past and we hope the team management will pick up the right combination and come with better planning in Sydney. Can't wait to watch that test!!

  • Pakistani from Multan on December 31, 2009, 8:04 GMT

    A good article with some decent analysis. But Mr. Abbasi whats the point of doing all this analysis when PCB has no time to pay any heed to anything other than satisfy their greed and nepotism. I suggest that you and Osman Saluddin who have been very active with cricinfo and have been doing English interviews with foreign coaches to convey the message to PCB to use their brain if they have any at all.

  • khan on December 31, 2009, 7:53 GMT

    without younas pakistan cant win.the curent players r not playing for paksitan.all r playing for their self.at the other end u see younas khan who has laways played for pakistan.i am surprised to see people saying that younas khan has run away.he has done a wise tghing for the sake of pakistan that iam not in form i am going and gave other chance.if he he did not take rest people would have been saying what is he doing in the team he is out of form.what is shoaib malik doing in australia he is selfish person.he is enjoying himself there.he should be out of the team forever.

  • Frustrated paki fan on December 31, 2009, 7:35 GMT

    I said dis already wen da team was nz n i wud repeat it again dat nobody beside's yusuf n umar akmal deserves da place in da team as a batsman 4m da current sqaud fawad or khurram cud b tried though get yasir hameed, saeed bin nasir or even ahmed shehzad shawed good technic last year in abu dhabi vs oz n u have 2 haue 1 allrounder in da team afridi is da best option bt anwar ali cud b tried stop getting dis ICL returnees in da team jst bcoz dey got money 2 offer think 4 da nation selectors n b honest 2 ur job i wont select sami or farhat even in my dream ever at least look at their evrages n kamran u r damn right aggression is wat missing dey get into so much defencive mode dat even da bad balls r avoided we r always defendin our wickets rather dan making da bowler defend da boundries

  • Ehsan bhutta on December 31, 2009, 7:21 GMT

    Yes i totally agree with Kamran.However we have to give some respite after 3rd day.They played well in second innings but Johnson,s over on 5th day was the over which "Killed"Pakistan's chances in Yousuf words.The fault however lies in first innings flatness both in batting and bowling.We were two bowlers short.Saeed can only take wickets in onedays.He cannot bowl out teams in tests.Similarly Rauf was surprise selection.Sami or Gull has to replace him.But how to accomodate two spinners for Sydney?Whether to drop a batsman for such weak batting lineup?Seconly Younus is not being sent by selectors>If team managemnt request is not considered symphthetically then they might have excuse for poor batting.Faisal/Fawad/Farhat have been given too many chances.This is last chance for Farhat .He has to takeon lefthand bowlers.Have practice with Aamir.

  • Mahmood on December 31, 2009, 7:19 GMT

    Pakistani team shows a culture and it coems from a country where bouts of imagination and creativity are too often shown and destroyed.

    Pakistan needs to learn less moody, they should learn to change......we are best or mere zeroes.Balance is the key which has been missing, and for balance attitudes are the issue. Yes we can defaet Australia , if we are there to defeat and accept it as doable and challenging.

  • Fiaz Ali on December 31, 2009, 7:17 GMT

    Great article. I totally agree. Afridi in test matches can match the likes of Flintoff (Considering Afridi's extremely improved bowling and mature batting).

  • Imran on December 31, 2009, 7:03 GMT

    In the tv commentary slater,benaud & co were talking about where Johnson delivers the ball from,which is basically very close to the stumps so that it arrives at the right handers at an angle, so that when they play straight they are actually playing across the line and vulnerable to caught behinds.Benaud suggested the batsman turn their bodies more to the left to combat it or try something to get Johnson thinking and unsettled,why can't the batsmen think out of the box and not get penned down.Yousufs comments about sloggers is right,apart from him the others are not test batters, U Akmal is talented but will take time to settle and mature. Aamir Sohail called for the inclusion of M Waseem and Taufiq Umar,why are former players opinions not even considered and debated.This current PCB is the most corrupt and arrogant and i'm losing interest rapidly,but its no surprise seeing Mr 210 per cent is in charge of the country,kick him out and then the crooks in pcb

  • Ishrat on December 31, 2009, 7:01 GMT

    Afridi has to come in my ideal team would be S. Malik and Butt opening, Younis, MoYo, Umer Akmal, Kamran Akmal, S Afridi, Aamer, Asif, Sami, Kaneria. Kamran is a wonderful offside player who has played many good test innings and now must be given the confidence by the management to come up the order and with Afridi in the team you have a fifth bowling option. S Malik will bring the experience up the order.Lets go Pakistan SCG awaits

  • Manjas on December 31, 2009, 7:01 GMT

    I think we should bat more aggresively against a team like australia.that will put pressure on this australia's inexperienced pace bowlers.pakistan should find some one of the mould of gayle or sehwag at the top of the order to do that.Afridi has the talent but he has to be bit smart.it will also increase our bowling options.

  • Altaf (Jeddah K.S.A) on December 31, 2009, 6:58 GMT

    Kamran I think if PCB will follow your analysis, Pakistan team would have been number one in the world but the sad part is they don't have that much sence since they are bunch of sourceful peaple who does'nt have cricketing sence, Pak can improve if they bring Afridi, Razak & Younis back,Imran Farhat should be replace by Kamran Akmal as an opener & captain should be more agressive in his approach. I Still have confidence that Pak can beat Australia Isha Allah

  • Yasir Soleja on December 31, 2009, 6:56 GMT

    This is EXACTLY what I've been saying. Abdur Rauf was a source of relaxation for the Aussies, and then Imran Farhat wasn't supposed to be in Australia, infact I was actually sad when he scored that century in Newzealand because it meant he'll play the whole series in Australia :( and then Shahid Afridi, WHY cant he help us out? We need attacking cricketers in Australia, his legspin is more than handy and then he has a test batting average of 37.50. And given that he CAN be a bit more responsible with the bat, which he has shown recently, HE SHOULD PLAY! And we need Younis Khan! Why cant they listen to us :( You know what, its going to be a 3-nil whitewash. I can bet my bottom dollar on that, if we dont make the necessary changes and not only that but also to be at our best. I'll still be a loyal fan and will follow all the matches, sadly :(

  • jamal arif on December 31, 2009, 6:53 GMT

    Dilly dallying in sending yunus should count as a criminal offence against iqbal Qasim & Co. The same mantra is being repeated as was done with Misbah. It was only when the PCB intervened was Misbah able to leave. However, Sami faced no such problems. It is high time that Yunus is on a plane.

    The other forgotten player is Asim Kamal. The poor chap has no backers who can plead his case. He has proved himself and if domestic performance is a criterion he then certainly fits the bill.His inclusion will bolster the middle order.

    Fawad Alam, perhaps needs to be given another chance in the opening slot. He has a test century to his name and may come of age in australia, if given an opportunity.

    I agree Shahid afridi should make a comeback to test cricket. He still has a few years left in him. His inclusion will bolster the fielding besides his all round capabilities.

    Pakistan has the manpower. The issue is of harnessing and moulding individual talents in a cohesive and well oiled unit.

  • w on December 31, 2009, 6:50 GMT

    I disagree, 1) Autralia have a formidable batting line up. 2) Their bowling is weaker. When they hunt as a unit, only then do they have a decent attack. Additionally, they are only effective once they have a huge score on the board.Furthermore, They do not have an individual bowler in their ranks who can claim to have the talent to really turn a match. The closest they have is Johnson, but when he bowls fast he is not accurate (like Sami) and when he bowls within him self, although he's much better, but again cannot generate enough controlled movement to trouble the batsmen. (his first over was an exception.) 3) Their spinner is ordinary but disciplined.

    4)As you have access to the Kings ear (yusuf. Can you not suggest the usage of Afridi. and if you have, what was the reaction?

  • Dinesh on December 31, 2009, 6:41 GMT

    Defeating aussies in their own backyard needs something special from the players. Pakistan failed to maintain the intensity all through the test, they had been rattled by disciplined performance from aussie bowlers.Inconsistency in all departments has been the major problem for pakistan over the years, they just had a glimpse of positives in Aamer and Umar akmal. A Phenomenal performance is required to conquer aussies, Pak has to match them in all departments of the game otherwise there is no stopping aussie juggernaut. Pak has to improve rapidly in the fielding department as australia made to pay them very badly, five drop catches in a test wont help to win a test. Australia is on a high after winning 3 our of last 4 tests they played on home so Pakistam has to deliver something exceptional to win a test. Right now..Australia are super favourites to win 3-0.

  • Muhammad Owais on December 31, 2009, 6:38 GMT

    Well analysed Kamran, however, I would like to add that you have not mentioned the fielding lapses made by Pakistan during both the innings. Only God knows what could have been the situation had Umar Akmal and Misbah had hold onto the catches offered by the Australian openers in the first innings. It is always said that catches win matches, if Umar Akmal had stayed and made a match winning century, the lapse by Hauritz would have been blamed but to their luck he offered another in the very first over of the morning and any hopes Pakistan had in the evening had vanished in the first over on the fifth day

  • w on December 31, 2009, 6:38 GMT

    Does anyone feel afridi has matured enough to give him a second chance at test matches. His batting will never be amazing (although he averages 40), but he will bring a lot more to the team. e.g A good fielder, a second spinner and most of all an aura of aggression which scares all the teams. (have you ever seen teams showing such relief when getting any other batsmen out (with an average of 20). Plus, the fact our openers aren't much better than afridi in batting anyway.

    If his aggression can rub off onto the rest of the team, we will have a match winning test team. Our bowling attack is more than capable of defending innings totals of 300+.

    And to be honest our middle order (with Younis) has no excuse for not scoring 300+ in every innings.

  • Usman Moorad on December 31, 2009, 6:33 GMT

    Poor fawad alam. Just don't understand what that guy has to do to get a place in this terrible batting lineup. And yes, kaneria and gul should definitely be in.

  • Amir on December 31, 2009, 6:28 GMT

    I think Misbha,Rauf,and Imran Farhat should never ever be givin a chance again to play,they have put pakistan so many times,espacialy Misbah-ul Hhaq. I rather have Abdul Razaq,Shahid Afridi,and Imran Nazeer play even though they are not Test players, but i am sure they will put some quick runs on the board, not get out on (0)DUCK. Shahid Afridi can be used as SPINNER,ABDUL RAZZAQ can be a partner ship breakin bowler.

  • Asad on December 31, 2009, 6:26 GMT

    Nice Analysis, rather I would say comments pouring out from the core of the heart, it is irritating to see, that pakistan is not playing with their best 11, although the replacements can be made. it is also more irritating and annoying to see that whenever pakistan gets an oppertunity to become a formidable side in the world cricket, they are always not best prepared, I mean playing against australia is a big oppertunity for pakistan to reestablish its long lost glory in world cricket, but look at our approach our captain is a world class batsman but at the same time a reserve personality not proactive and attacking, then we have a vulnerable opening combination, a middle order missing a key player (Younis), no quality allrounder, and a bowling line up with much promise if kaneria and sami are included, afridi has improved substancially in the last couple of years he must be in a test side, and I think younis is the best man to lead the team he is active and represhingly attacking.

  • ASIF on December 31, 2009, 6:23 GMT

    It is really laughable to say that younis needs to prove his fitness by playing in domestic cricket but it is more laughable & sheer nonsense to say that afridi is not good enough for tests.I have been writing for afridi's inclusion in the team for the last three years but surprisingly the whole of pakistan is silently watching the their team getting thrashed match after match.It is also surprising that yousuf wants younis in the team & not afridi.Actually pak needs both younis & afridi.Also afridi's batting average is next only to yousuf & younus & his bowling strike rate is even better than kaneria.What is the point in playing ajmal who takes 1 or 2 wickets in 50 overs where in afridi would have definitely taken more wickets & would have given the team more stability with his aggressive approach & moreover he the only frequent match winner.My team for the tests will be salman,kamran akmal,younis,yousuf,mizbah,afridi,amir,gul,asif & kaneria.

  • Syed osman Jafery. on December 31, 2009, 6:20 GMT

    Excellent points in this article.Pakistan needs a fifth bowler and I think Afridi coming in he can open and give an option of fifth bowler or other option would be Younis khan coming in.

  • indian iceberg on December 31, 2009, 6:10 GMT

    yousuf is right to say that 20-20 will sink pakistan's ship in test cricket. test matches are the heart and soul of cricket. i am much happy india being numero uno in tests rather than in any other format.only RSA and india seemed to defeat OZ in their own backyard.RSA did it,india were close on two occassions but bucknor denied that!!!neverthless india defeated them in the subcontinent 2-0 ! if pakistan has any chance of winning they should play what they know the best(like sehwag does)-just attack,attack and attack.get your best foot forward,put pressure and keep it for five days,you can win.my suggestion is that kamran akmal should open with salman butt,he is been wasted at number 7.keep ajmal on-offies have always troubled OZ.so...go with positive attitude-attack is the best form of defence!

  • Badar on December 31, 2009, 6:09 GMT

    I think pakistan should play with three pacers and two spinners at sydney. Aamer, Asif, Gul, Kaneria and Ajmal. This will make pakistan's attack formidable. This attack is capable of getting Australia out under 250 runs. Where as if pakistan goes with one bowler short and allow Austalia to score over 350 runs, one extra batsman would not be able to coupe with that. And yousaf will have to play attacking cricket, specially with 4, 5 men around the bat when spinners are operating.

  • indian iceberg on December 31, 2009, 6:08 GMT

    yousuf is right to say that 20-20 will sink pakistan's ship in test cricket. test matches are the heart and soul of cricket. i am much happy india being numero uno in tests rather than in any other format.only RSA and india seemed to defeat OZ in their own backyard.RSA did it,india were close on two occassions but bucknor denied that!!!neverthless india defeated them in the subcontinent 2-0 ! if pakistan has any chance of winning they should play what they know the best(like sehwag does)-just attack,attack and attack.get your best foot forward,put pressure and keep it for five days,you can win.my suggestion is that kamran akmal should open with salman butt,he is been wasted at number 7.keep ajmal on-offies have always troubled OZ.so...go with positive attitude-attack is the best form of defence!

  • kaushik on December 31, 2009, 6:05 GMT

    Where is younis khan the most experienced batsmen after yousuf ?? Australia have agraet pace attack and haurit is at his best Pakisthan should come up with graet character and temperment to get through them.

  • Raj Balakrishnan on December 31, 2009, 5:59 GMT

    Hi! Was moved by Yousuf's hard-hitting press conference/statement highlighting the dangers of T20 and requesting for more emphasis on test cricket. PCB and the players should follow his advice.

  • Muhammad Saidul Haque on December 31, 2009, 5:58 GMT

    Well Kamran Abbassi vhai at first take my salam. You have noticed 10 fare logical points. But, don't mind just tell me, why did you not realize that Pakistan had played along with only 4 regular bowlers ? What's the immatured decision taken by team management and captain Yousuf ? Danish Should have been included with Ajmal as well. And talking about so called miserable Batting by Pak batsmen, especially when they were chasing only 252 with 7 valuable wickets remaining, Umar, Misbah and Kamran Akmal did not honestly perform their consistent patience to stay in the crease as long as they would keep their mind cool. Indisciplined cricket, unfit-reckless & irresponsible batting, bowling and fielding would never bring out the desired success.

  • Manasvi on December 31, 2009, 5:54 GMT

    I'd pick Gul over Sami, based on his superior record in international cricket. If two spinners are required, I don't believe that Pakistan's tail is too long. With Kamran Akmal at No. 7 and Aamer at No. 8 the batting is deep enough. If Afridi was picked as the second spinner, the batting would be strengthened at the expense of the bowling. And one needs to pick 20 wickets to win a game. Afridi is a very good bowler in T20s, but his overall record in ODIs and Tests leaves much to be desired. He's not the kind of bowler who can bowl 30-40 overs per innings. I don't know why you are more partial to Butt than Farhat. Both of them have similar Test averages, but Farhat is in better form and offers a useful bowling option. Bring Shoaib Malik back (use him as second spinner) and as opener. Concerning Younis, he is clearly lacking in form AND in match practice. This would be my team I.Farhat Shoaib Malik Faisal Iqbal/Younis Yousuf U. Akmal Misbah K. Akmal Aamer Ajmal/ Gul Kaneria Asif

  • John Buchanan part2 on December 31, 2009, 5:53 GMT

    wow....u r trying to read too much in few small good performances...thats bieng trying to be overtly optimistic while conveneiently looking other way over facts....Umar akmal will be sorted out like every batsman is sorted...Every new bowler is a threat till his tricks are known and studied...what matters is consistency and teams like aus, Sa,india have shown that on regular basis and so they are all at some point no 1. Only perhaps yonis and yusuf has some class...perhaps maybe umar akmal does have some talent but not on par with some others in world definetly...he will fade off for sure like others cos patience and class are missing...test match is not just strokeplay.

  • AZ on December 31, 2009, 5:51 GMT

    Our memories are fading fast - Younis and Malik are both out of form for some time now in the test cricket. How long Younis will capitalize on the tripple century he made in Pakistan? Against pace, Younis will be another disappointment. I would rather try someone that can deliver vs the ones we keep trying and keep failing. BTW, that list is fairly long:

    1. Farhat 2. Butt 3. Iqbal 4. Malik 5. Misbah

  • venkat on December 31, 2009, 5:49 GMT

    What happened to Taufeeq Umar? Why is he cooling his heels in Pakistan. Imran Khan singled him out as a huge prospect for Pakistan.

  • salman rafique on December 31, 2009, 5:43 GMT

    a question came to my mind just yesterday...where the hell is asim kamal and taufeeq umer? as far as i remember, they were very formidable and solid openers...especially asims temprament is unmatched..he has an ice cool head..wasnt that the foremost requirement for a test batsman?

  • Umer on December 31, 2009, 5:42 GMT

    Kamran,

    The selectors will need younis to prove his form because he isnt in any form. yes he has a tripple ton this year but he has struggled recently. Also, bear in mind that the selectors want to ensure that there is no sort of an easy way for any player to just walk back into the team. there needs to be proper channels i.e. in this case playing domestic cricket, before you can make your way back to the side. the selectors want to set this example for other players.

  • Sami Ullah on December 31, 2009, 5:37 GMT

    Good Points Kamran there, i totally agree! #11. Fire all the current selectors. 2-3 players in the current team are purely b/c on nepotism (family relations etc.) These Parchi/sifarishi players Butt,Farhat, and Iqbal have absolutely pathetic averages despite they each have about 25 tests. which gives us enough time to judge the talents they have, which is NONE!......and deserving players like Fawad needs more chance. also bring in Asim Kamal back to tests (has scored 50+ scores 8 out of 20 innings) Steps to Take: 1. Fire these corrupt selectors and PCB management. 2. Fire this coach, Intikhab Alam.<

    Kamran, PLz write an article about current corrupt selectors!

  • Kool Kat on December 31, 2009, 5:27 GMT

    This is Test cricket mate. Glorify your grafters and not the flashy stokeplayers. 70 runs scored over 2 sessions of hostile bowling is much better than 40 scored off 10 overs. If all we wanted to see was a few big hoiks, there are plenty of practitioners in the sub-continent. All wanting their 15 minutes of fame - Kapugedera, Suresh Raina etc.

  • waseem on December 31, 2009, 4:55 GMT

    I still believe Pakistan can beat at least 1 test in Australia if they keep their focus right.Currently it seems they have in mind the IPL3 contract rather than country.Pakistan is still struggling to get the real openers,If salman butt keeps play across line or Farhat still plays with bad technique then why not try Kamran Akmal or Shoaib Malik as makeshift openers.I still doubt over Kamran comments over Younas he should not be in the team.He will not do more good with his current form.Don't play Afridi as all rounder with his current form but can play him as bowler in place of Rauf after seeing the Sydney wicket.my playing 11 would be Malik-Salman/Farhat-Faisal-Yousaf-Akmal-Misbah-Kamran-Afridi/Sami-Amir-Asif-Kaneria.

    On your Point 9.Pakistan should play aggressive cricket but it should come from bowlers our batsmen already are getting out by playing across the line so they should be more careful.

  • Asim Syed on December 31, 2009, 4:16 GMT

    I had a big plan to go to SCG and see the second test but after such a disgraceful performance by the Paki team I am shattered and don't want to and see these clowns there. Imran farhat, Faisal Iqbal and even Misbah should all be sacked. Rauf should be hanged for dropping that catch and buried for his bowling performance. I want to make a reality check on this team as a keen observer for the last 2 decade. Starting from the openers I think Salman Butt does have a faulty technique but he is not that bad to be dropped as an opener. However he should not play ball pitching in the middle with half front foot and with cross bat. Forget Farhat and Faisal. Yousaf is a class player but with nonne around his skill set is fading quickly. Umar akmal could transform into a batting genius like Sachin but someone has to tell him to control his aggression. He must learn to stay calm and composed else he will be history. He has a talent but this talent is of no use the way he is playing.

  • Usman on December 31, 2009, 4:01 GMT

    Let's not delude ourselves. Ponting declared twice, North and Haddin will score more in Sydney than they had the opportunity to in Melbourne. Hauritz scored 75 as night watchman!

    Pakistan don't have the batting depth to win a test in Australia. Afridi should play in Sydney - should be able to get four wickets in each innings at least. He'd bat at number 7 instead of K Akmal (who should be opening).

    And don't even mention the hopeless catching by Pakistan. Ponting wouldn't have to declare so much if they just held onto their catches. How hard is it to catch a cricket ball? Surely a sign of nervousness and a lack of confidence. Confidence not forthcoming from the captain. And confidence would not be about to rise while the captain keeps phoning Pakistan to get Y Khan over here. Why not keep these calls a secret? No point letting everyone know - in case the selectors don't agree - you end up without YK and now the remaining batsmen feel like at least one of them is unwanted.

  • PakLover on December 31, 2009, 3:46 GMT

    If I ever have money, what I would do is open a cricket graduation college just like engineering/medical where raw talent from across the country will be groomed and made professional cricketers with not only cricketing skills, but leadership skills, presentation skills, language skills, strategy skills after all it affects the entire country how bunch of losers are representing us, who has no professionalism, no educational background and just because they showed some talent somewhere and got a huge RECOMMENDATION (PURCHEE) from some high official. Shame on us, nothing is about the change, we are a nation on whom, the most corrupt known person in pakistan has been imposed as President, what can we expect from a cricket team.

    When will we wake up, after nothing is left. Wake up people, do something.

  • Burhan Khan on December 31, 2009, 3:39 GMT

    The selection committee, who are these guys? played few dacades ago!!! man that cricket was different, its the ever changing world of technology, we need smart people who are constantly updating themselves not those who just rely on their gut feeling or BIG PURCHEE. I mentioned earlier, only talent (and that too individual) will never beat professionalism and strategy in this era. We need to have a solid team and game plan based on all the statistics and informations which are lying in thosands of databases around the world but only Pakistanis can't make a use of it, why, because they never went through a system which can build on top of their talent and equip them will necessary skills. The way MOYO used Asif and Aamir, I bet you, both will be injured soon. Man, they are your horses and you need to provide them proper rest, isn't a team consist of 11 members. But no use, we will keep on burning our blood and just like the whole country, nothing will change with Pakistan cricket. Kash!

  • razzaq on December 31, 2009, 3:25 GMT

    pakistan must drop out of form batsmans like shoib malik,misbah,younis and bring in young players like umar akmal ,aamer to make a good team

  • Talal Khawaja (mcgrawaddict) on December 31, 2009, 2:01 GMT

    Your right on the money.

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • Talal Khawaja (mcgrawaddict) on December 31, 2009, 2:01 GMT

    Your right on the money.

  • razzaq on December 31, 2009, 3:25 GMT

    pakistan must drop out of form batsmans like shoib malik,misbah,younis and bring in young players like umar akmal ,aamer to make a good team

  • Burhan Khan on December 31, 2009, 3:39 GMT

    The selection committee, who are these guys? played few dacades ago!!! man that cricket was different, its the ever changing world of technology, we need smart people who are constantly updating themselves not those who just rely on their gut feeling or BIG PURCHEE. I mentioned earlier, only talent (and that too individual) will never beat professionalism and strategy in this era. We need to have a solid team and game plan based on all the statistics and informations which are lying in thosands of databases around the world but only Pakistanis can't make a use of it, why, because they never went through a system which can build on top of their talent and equip them will necessary skills. The way MOYO used Asif and Aamir, I bet you, both will be injured soon. Man, they are your horses and you need to provide them proper rest, isn't a team consist of 11 members. But no use, we will keep on burning our blood and just like the whole country, nothing will change with Pakistan cricket. Kash!

  • PakLover on December 31, 2009, 3:46 GMT

    If I ever have money, what I would do is open a cricket graduation college just like engineering/medical where raw talent from across the country will be groomed and made professional cricketers with not only cricketing skills, but leadership skills, presentation skills, language skills, strategy skills after all it affects the entire country how bunch of losers are representing us, who has no professionalism, no educational background and just because they showed some talent somewhere and got a huge RECOMMENDATION (PURCHEE) from some high official. Shame on us, nothing is about the change, we are a nation on whom, the most corrupt known person in pakistan has been imposed as President, what can we expect from a cricket team.

    When will we wake up, after nothing is left. Wake up people, do something.

  • Usman on December 31, 2009, 4:01 GMT

    Let's not delude ourselves. Ponting declared twice, North and Haddin will score more in Sydney than they had the opportunity to in Melbourne. Hauritz scored 75 as night watchman!

    Pakistan don't have the batting depth to win a test in Australia. Afridi should play in Sydney - should be able to get four wickets in each innings at least. He'd bat at number 7 instead of K Akmal (who should be opening).

    And don't even mention the hopeless catching by Pakistan. Ponting wouldn't have to declare so much if they just held onto their catches. How hard is it to catch a cricket ball? Surely a sign of nervousness and a lack of confidence. Confidence not forthcoming from the captain. And confidence would not be about to rise while the captain keeps phoning Pakistan to get Y Khan over here. Why not keep these calls a secret? No point letting everyone know - in case the selectors don't agree - you end up without YK and now the remaining batsmen feel like at least one of them is unwanted.

  • Asim Syed on December 31, 2009, 4:16 GMT

    I had a big plan to go to SCG and see the second test but after such a disgraceful performance by the Paki team I am shattered and don't want to and see these clowns there. Imran farhat, Faisal Iqbal and even Misbah should all be sacked. Rauf should be hanged for dropping that catch and buried for his bowling performance. I want to make a reality check on this team as a keen observer for the last 2 decade. Starting from the openers I think Salman Butt does have a faulty technique but he is not that bad to be dropped as an opener. However he should not play ball pitching in the middle with half front foot and with cross bat. Forget Farhat and Faisal. Yousaf is a class player but with nonne around his skill set is fading quickly. Umar akmal could transform into a batting genius like Sachin but someone has to tell him to control his aggression. He must learn to stay calm and composed else he will be history. He has a talent but this talent is of no use the way he is playing.

  • waseem on December 31, 2009, 4:55 GMT

    I still believe Pakistan can beat at least 1 test in Australia if they keep their focus right.Currently it seems they have in mind the IPL3 contract rather than country.Pakistan is still struggling to get the real openers,If salman butt keeps play across line or Farhat still plays with bad technique then why not try Kamran Akmal or Shoaib Malik as makeshift openers.I still doubt over Kamran comments over Younas he should not be in the team.He will not do more good with his current form.Don't play Afridi as all rounder with his current form but can play him as bowler in place of Rauf after seeing the Sydney wicket.my playing 11 would be Malik-Salman/Farhat-Faisal-Yousaf-Akmal-Misbah-Kamran-Afridi/Sami-Amir-Asif-Kaneria.

    On your Point 9.Pakistan should play aggressive cricket but it should come from bowlers our batsmen already are getting out by playing across the line so they should be more careful.

  • Kool Kat on December 31, 2009, 5:27 GMT

    This is Test cricket mate. Glorify your grafters and not the flashy stokeplayers. 70 runs scored over 2 sessions of hostile bowling is much better than 40 scored off 10 overs. If all we wanted to see was a few big hoiks, there are plenty of practitioners in the sub-continent. All wanting their 15 minutes of fame - Kapugedera, Suresh Raina etc.

  • Sami Ullah on December 31, 2009, 5:37 GMT

    Good Points Kamran there, i totally agree! #11. Fire all the current selectors. 2-3 players in the current team are purely b/c on nepotism (family relations etc.) These Parchi/sifarishi players Butt,Farhat, and Iqbal have absolutely pathetic averages despite they each have about 25 tests. which gives us enough time to judge the talents they have, which is NONE!......and deserving players like Fawad needs more chance. also bring in Asim Kamal back to tests (has scored 50+ scores 8 out of 20 innings) Steps to Take: 1. Fire these corrupt selectors and PCB management. 2. Fire this coach, Intikhab Alam.<

    Kamran, PLz write an article about current corrupt selectors!

  • Umer on December 31, 2009, 5:42 GMT

    Kamran,

    The selectors will need younis to prove his form because he isnt in any form. yes he has a tripple ton this year but he has struggled recently. Also, bear in mind that the selectors want to ensure that there is no sort of an easy way for any player to just walk back into the team. there needs to be proper channels i.e. in this case playing domestic cricket, before you can make your way back to the side. the selectors want to set this example for other players.