Australia 2009-10 January 2, 2010

Mo and Inti's Book of Excuses

Come on chaps, accept some responsibility and motivate your troops instead of saying: "Everything's messed up, it's not our fault, and we can't do anything about it."
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While billions of people have been working on their New Year's resolutions, Pakistan fans can sleep safe that instead of setting targets and goals for 2010 the Pakistani "think tank" have been cooking up a series of excuses for the team's plight.

Mr Mo Yousuf and Mr Inti Alam are making a decent late bid to become the pantomime clowns of the 2009-2010 season. Come on chaps, accept some responsibility and motivate your troops instead of saying: "Everything's messed up, it's not our fault, and we can't do anything about it." Here are three extracts from Mo and Inti's Book of Excuses, you might have some of your own to add.

Excuse Number 1: Don't blame us for the witless batting, blame Twenty20. Sounds plausible but forgets the point that most of the batsmen's careers predate the advent of Twenty20. In any case, these are professional players whose brains should be able to switch gears. I much prefer Shahid Afridi's view that Twenty20 has enhanced Test cricket. Indeed, much of Australia's domination of Test cricket was thanks to their one-day rate of scoring. Pakistan's batsmen like to give it a go but can't keep it up for long enough.

Excuse Number 2: Don't blame us for the hopeless fielding, blame Pakistani domestic cricket - and while we're at it how could a fielding coach do better than us anyway? Sounds half-plausible but the problem is that fielding is one discipline that really can be improved with perseverance and specialist input. Pakistan's main problem is that standards of fielding have risen in all other teams while Pakistan have stagnated. Generally, when Pakistan are playing well with a positive attitude, they hold their catches. Last year's Twenty20 was a prime example, when Pakistan went on a roll they hardly put a catch down and fielded as well as any team. They can do it, so complacent excuses don't wash.

Excuse Number 3: Don't blame us for the bowling, that's what we hired Waqar to cop the blame for.

With this excuse culture setting in, and Mohammad Aamer's injury, Pakistan's prospects aren't looking too clever for the Sydney Test. While fans continue to support their team with passion and are desperate for success, it hurts to see the country's cricket administrators and management of the team continually squander the natural resources at Pakistan's disposal.

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

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • kiramatalishah on January 12, 2010, 12:08 GMT

    Influence can be defined as the power exerted over the minds and behavior of others. A power that can affect, persuade and cause changes to someone or something. In order to influence people, you first need to discover what is already influencing them. What makes them tick? What do they care about? We need some leverage to work with when we’re trying to change how people think and behave.

    www.onlineuniversalwork.com

  • soamie on January 12, 2010, 6:20 GMT

    Experts have talked about this before. How many times have you read about the importance of ‘adding value’ for your audience? How many times have you read about ‘building trust’ with your readers/prospects? Many, many times. You know it well. Every marketing guru has spoken about this topic. I’m sick of hearing it. But it STILL bears repeating. www.onlineuniversalwork.com

  • somaie on January 12, 2010, 6:18 GMT

    Experts have talked about this before. How many times have you read about the importance of ‘adding value’ for your audience? How many times have you read about ‘building trust’ with your readers/prospects? Many, many times. You know it well. Every marketing guru has spoken about this topic. I’m sick of hearing it. But it STILL bears repeating. www.onlineuniversalwork.com

  • AfridiFan on January 3, 2010, 13:58 GMT

    i think what MoYo meant with T20 is that in pakistan it has become the main form of the game, all young and upcoming cricketers are now wanting to hit out firstly because you become in instant hero if you pull it off and secondly because there is a lot more money in it for less work. Farhat, Faisal Iqbal both of the Akmals and to some degree misbah have changed there game to being aggressive which they may not have done if T20 wasnt around

  • javed on January 3, 2010, 10:31 GMT

    Sir, with due respect I am not at all agree with your comments. I think Yousaf got all the talents in the world to lead Pakistan side as Cap & without any doubts he is one of the best batsmen around. Yes there is place for improvement on batting and fielding area where we need to concentrate immensely to perform well. Regd'n Inti, he was & is very good on his roll but know age is catching, so he has to decide to hand over his charge but without any question he served at his best. Another thing where I like our selection team to consider, Shahid Afridi can be better choice on Australian fast pitches where Afridi's ball can skid faster and produce better magic then Kinaria's, not saying Kinaria is not good but just looking at Australian condition and again Afridi can help our batting strength on a day and we all know he is excellent fielder too. At this moment, I request instead pulling anybody leg we should support them and hope for best.

  • javed on January 3, 2010, 10:15 GMT

    Sir, with due respect I am not at all agree with your comments. I think Yousaf got all the talents in the world to lead Pakistan side as Cap & without any doubts he is one of the best batsmen around. Yes there is place for improvement on batting and fielding area where we need to concentrate immensely to perform well. Regd'n Inti, he was & is very good on his roll but know age is catching, so he has to decide to hand over his charge but without any question he served at his best. Another thing where I like our selection team to consider, Shahid Afridi can be better choice on Australian fast pitches where Afridi's ball can skid faster and produce better magic then Kinaria's, not saying Kinaria is not good but just looking at Australian condition and again Afridi can help our batting strength on a day and we all know he is excellent fielder too. At this moment, I request instead pulling anybody leg we should support them and hope for best.

  • Maindad on January 3, 2010, 9:53 GMT

    well said Imran, Pakistan need to find more Umar Akmal's and M> Amir's in their under 19 team and domestic team, stop giving so many chances to Salman Bhat, Imran Farhat, Faisal, Malik and Misbah, come recruit new blood selectors. Pleaseeeeeeeeeeeee

  • irfan on January 3, 2010, 4:26 GMT

    Good to see EAMiran back. Kamran Abbasi there is a time to joust and there is a time to hold your peace until the battle breaks up. You are really itching to let the on field administration and the selectors have it because they couldn't decide about Younis. Please! As an eminent writer it would have been responsible if you had wished good luck to Yousuf because who knows tomorrow you might be eating humble pie. I realize that it is well with in your right to dissent but not while all hearts pray for whatever team is playing on the ground. Every body is fair game before and after but not while a contest is under way. Let's all support our men!

  • Yousuf Zaman on January 3, 2010, 4:22 GMT

    Kamran ,back to Your column reg Sami , looks like You do not check proper records/history .Sami is the best/fittest/fastest pace bowler in Pakistan.

  • Andrew on January 3, 2010, 3:05 GMT

    I thought everything was Lawson's fault?

    YK is a class player and it never should have got to that stage. Having got there, they should never have sent an SOS for him. And having done so, they should never be in a spot where the Board says "No, make him play FC cricket." That just makes it a circus, undermines the current squad, annoys YK a second time and did I mention turns it into a circus?? Would any other team do that?

  • kiramatalishah on January 12, 2010, 12:08 GMT

    Influence can be defined as the power exerted over the minds and behavior of others. A power that can affect, persuade and cause changes to someone or something. In order to influence people, you first need to discover what is already influencing them. What makes them tick? What do they care about? We need some leverage to work with when we’re trying to change how people think and behave.

    www.onlineuniversalwork.com

  • soamie on January 12, 2010, 6:20 GMT

    Experts have talked about this before. How many times have you read about the importance of ‘adding value’ for your audience? How many times have you read about ‘building trust’ with your readers/prospects? Many, many times. You know it well. Every marketing guru has spoken about this topic. I’m sick of hearing it. But it STILL bears repeating. www.onlineuniversalwork.com

  • somaie on January 12, 2010, 6:18 GMT

    Experts have talked about this before. How many times have you read about the importance of ‘adding value’ for your audience? How many times have you read about ‘building trust’ with your readers/prospects? Many, many times. You know it well. Every marketing guru has spoken about this topic. I’m sick of hearing it. But it STILL bears repeating. www.onlineuniversalwork.com

  • AfridiFan on January 3, 2010, 13:58 GMT

    i think what MoYo meant with T20 is that in pakistan it has become the main form of the game, all young and upcoming cricketers are now wanting to hit out firstly because you become in instant hero if you pull it off and secondly because there is a lot more money in it for less work. Farhat, Faisal Iqbal both of the Akmals and to some degree misbah have changed there game to being aggressive which they may not have done if T20 wasnt around

  • javed on January 3, 2010, 10:31 GMT

    Sir, with due respect I am not at all agree with your comments. I think Yousaf got all the talents in the world to lead Pakistan side as Cap & without any doubts he is one of the best batsmen around. Yes there is place for improvement on batting and fielding area where we need to concentrate immensely to perform well. Regd'n Inti, he was & is very good on his roll but know age is catching, so he has to decide to hand over his charge but without any question he served at his best. Another thing where I like our selection team to consider, Shahid Afridi can be better choice on Australian fast pitches where Afridi's ball can skid faster and produce better magic then Kinaria's, not saying Kinaria is not good but just looking at Australian condition and again Afridi can help our batting strength on a day and we all know he is excellent fielder too. At this moment, I request instead pulling anybody leg we should support them and hope for best.

  • javed on January 3, 2010, 10:15 GMT

    Sir, with due respect I am not at all agree with your comments. I think Yousaf got all the talents in the world to lead Pakistan side as Cap & without any doubts he is one of the best batsmen around. Yes there is place for improvement on batting and fielding area where we need to concentrate immensely to perform well. Regd'n Inti, he was & is very good on his roll but know age is catching, so he has to decide to hand over his charge but without any question he served at his best. Another thing where I like our selection team to consider, Shahid Afridi can be better choice on Australian fast pitches where Afridi's ball can skid faster and produce better magic then Kinaria's, not saying Kinaria is not good but just looking at Australian condition and again Afridi can help our batting strength on a day and we all know he is excellent fielder too. At this moment, I request instead pulling anybody leg we should support them and hope for best.

  • Maindad on January 3, 2010, 9:53 GMT

    well said Imran, Pakistan need to find more Umar Akmal's and M> Amir's in their under 19 team and domestic team, stop giving so many chances to Salman Bhat, Imran Farhat, Faisal, Malik and Misbah, come recruit new blood selectors. Pleaseeeeeeeeeeeee

  • irfan on January 3, 2010, 4:26 GMT

    Good to see EAMiran back. Kamran Abbasi there is a time to joust and there is a time to hold your peace until the battle breaks up. You are really itching to let the on field administration and the selectors have it because they couldn't decide about Younis. Please! As an eminent writer it would have been responsible if you had wished good luck to Yousuf because who knows tomorrow you might be eating humble pie. I realize that it is well with in your right to dissent but not while all hearts pray for whatever team is playing on the ground. Every body is fair game before and after but not while a contest is under way. Let's all support our men!

  • Yousuf Zaman on January 3, 2010, 4:22 GMT

    Kamran ,back to Your column reg Sami , looks like You do not check proper records/history .Sami is the best/fittest/fastest pace bowler in Pakistan.

  • Andrew on January 3, 2010, 3:05 GMT

    I thought everything was Lawson's fault?

    YK is a class player and it never should have got to that stage. Having got there, they should never have sent an SOS for him. And having done so, they should never be in a spot where the Board says "No, make him play FC cricket." That just makes it a circus, undermines the current squad, annoys YK a second time and did I mention turns it into a circus?? Would any other team do that?

  • Saiful Ansari, Leesburg VA USA on January 3, 2010, 2:29 GMT

    Australia being a better side was always the favorite and Pakistan came in as underdogs. Excuses cant win test matches and both the Pakistan skipper and Coach need to figure out ways to play competitively with their current resources. More than a lack of athleticism, most Pakistani cricketers are mentally not strong enough. They become nervous under pressure and tend to drop catches and field poorly. A good psychiatrist should be hired to breed confidence in the players and induce them to field better.

  • Shahid on January 3, 2010, 1:53 GMT

    DO agree partially to FARRUKHS comments regarding existence of Regionalism and nepotism. But dear Farrukh you may agree that Karachi has stopped producing that exceptional bating talent which is needed. In fast bowling department,you will surely not argue that its only been Punjab who provided all the greats and where the talent lies. Regionalism may exist but then its only question of choosing between mediocres from Punjab or Karachi. The best bating talent (as pr. domestic stats) is also coming from Punjab, (Umar Akmal, Naved Yasin). I will love to have your comments, that which players from Karachi will you choose to replace Malik, Butt, Farhat and Misbah. Your choices must keep an eye on other possiblities else where (Like Naved Yasin of multan and Taufiq Umar of HBL).

  • roomi on January 3, 2010, 1:28 GMT

    Like always the talent is there but the management somehow manages to stifle n waste it. Since Saeed Anwer was pushed over before his time despite his world cup hundered against India Pakistan has failed to groom and nurture players. Talents like Imran Nazir seem lay waste on the side lines and the constant chopping and changing continues to produce a jittery set of players who are unsure of there places. Players like Nazir and Afridi need to come back in the test fold and they are talented enough to adjust. If that is not possible the top of the line domestic talent should be given an oppurtunity. Also it seems there are far too many coaches right now which is leading to muddled thinking and vision. players are being sent back and forth on whims. Selectors need to be considerate and firm in their selections and stand by them.

  • Moosa on January 3, 2010, 1:19 GMT

    problem wid butt: hes very scared while batting if under pressure...ive not seen a player trmbling ever before... Farhat: no technique n lack of temperament faisal Iqb: theres technique but hes too confused of how to play his natural game.. M yousuf...class performer but has grown old and a lot on his mind to retain his captaincy Misbah... bad luck cldnt recollect himself tryin very hard ..but doin too much all at once Umar akmal: dream batsmen for pakistan he just needs to be mentally strengthened and has to control his temperament... needs to learn how to pay respect to the bowlers while attackin em. Kamran... shld play his natural game but wid payin attention...concentration shldnot be losed... Younis khan... plays with authority even if hes not scoring has the attitude of yes-i-am-playing-for-my-country-n-i-m-proud but talent kum hai shld be in the team though hes a hard wrker...

    yasir hameed(best techniqe) shld be back wid butt n new openers shld b found n trained hard 4 de job

  • Moosa on January 3, 2010, 0:56 GMT

    lols.... so many comments the problem is very clear... we dont have natural talent n temperament for long batting in our batting line up... Umar is the only one i can see wid proper technique and talent, oders like kamran akmal has talent misbah has talent salman butt has talent... but temperament hell now rest dont even have talent... MoYo is another class... when a national team wont have the temperament to lead their country on the international stage wont have the mental strength how cn one assume of winning.... that too TEST matches... luck wont help u all the time now u are not filled up wid loads of talent lyk in the past years b4 2003... now hard work n mental strentgh alone can pull us out of these rubbish...

  • Salman on January 3, 2010, 0:52 GMT

    "Catches wins matches" thats very true. Unfortunately Pakistani players dont even know the fumdamental of taking a catch. I was watching the rain delay current game, due to the rain they showed highlights of the last test and I watched Misbah dropping a sitter with his hands close to his chest after dropping the catch the ball was up in the air, If he had made another attempt he could surely have caught on the second attempt instead he had his hands close to his chest how stupid that was. Pakistan has got to be the most stupid team playing test cricket. Bangladesh would make Pakistan look like a 3rd rated school eleven.

    I prospose the first criteria for test selection is the ability to field and take catches, even if your the best batsman in the country if your catching and fielding is not up to test standard a player should not be considered.

  • Ayaz Hyder on January 2, 2010, 23:22 GMT

    The reason Yousuf doesn't want a fielding coach is that a fielding coach would bring to light the fact that the current captain is the worst fielder of them all!

    Twitter @sahyder1

  • pakistani fan on January 2, 2010, 23:04 GMT

    good one mufti lol pakistan needs to bring afridi and younis immediately for third test. nothing less

  • Noor on January 2, 2010, 23:02 GMT

    I hear all this nonsense about bring back Younis Khan. Younis Khan is out of form, If he plays in Aust he will probably make 5 or 8 runs. What a waste of money on YK when PCA could easily experiment with players who have done well in the recent tourament in Pakistan. Pak have already lost this series against Aust why not try some new blood for the future instead hacking back to the same old formula. PCA biggest mistake is that they have failed to take advantage of the opportunity to try new young players, even if they failed it not that the present lot are doing great, it for worth a try . PCA have short vision, they should to look to the future and start planning from now. 2 criteria must be considered in the selection policy,one any new players must be a decent fielder, secondly, new players must be under 25 years of age. Seriouly, PCA must look to the future, and even they lose a series or two it worth a try. Pakistan cricket can not go on like this.

  • sunny on January 2, 2010, 23:00 GMT

    where is abdul razaq?why dont hes been in the team the problem with pakistan cricket is they dont appriciate player who are match winners for us.they keep thier politics ahead of every thing no matter what u wish they always gonna loose until they learn to appriciate the player who are match winners

  • maqbool mohammad on January 2, 2010, 22:53 GMT

    we have talented players, our problem is PCB. the reason we were a successful team in the days of imran khan, he did not listen to pcb and its pathetic selection committee, he was able to win the world cup with an inexperienced but spirited team. our problem is pcb. get rid of pcb and outsource cricket, privatise it and it will be better than what it is under PCB

  • Haroon on January 2, 2010, 22:48 GMT

    Failures always looks for excuses. Intikhab and MOYO dont have the decency to admit their failure. Intikhab Alam should be sacked. He is to fat and old to be a coach of an international team, under Inti, Pakistan team look like a country eleven, their fielding is worst in the history of test cricket. When I see a Pakistani fielder with hands far apart trying to catch the ball it makes you wonder what the hell the coach is for. Yes, Intikhab should be fire once they return home after 3-0 hammering to Aust.

    The trouble with Pakistan's cricket is we have too many free loaders who are paid hansomely for sub-standard management. First get rid of Intikhab, then fire Ijaz Butt. They are an embarrestment to the whole nation.

  • Kaiser on January 2, 2010, 22:39 GMT

    Pakistani cricketers are a product of streets until under-19, not cricket academies. In the street, you play 10 overs per side and any batsman giving up 4 dot balls is 'time-declared' by his captain for wasting the team's time. As such, I think Muhammad Yusuf is right that our domestic cricket needs longer games to produce professional cricketers and not sloggers.

  • Waleed Rahmatullah on January 2, 2010, 22:21 GMT

    Why T20? It's a great for of the sport and should be continued annually. Mo Yousef and Inti are correct about them needing a legit fielding coach! They really do need. If there is one who can 'teach' fielding to the Pakistan Team, then that would be perfect! Keep playing T20!

  • Farhan Hafeez on January 2, 2010, 22:10 GMT

    I am quiet surprised with all thsese comments. I personally feel everyone deserve some time to be in the team to prove themselfs. I strongly believe the biggest problem of our team is the spirit + fielding. I strongly beleive all of us know "CATCHES WIN MATCHES" & we r dropping cathes at a regular interval. Despite of poor batting performance I think we could have put enough competition If had not dropped those catches

  • Imran on January 2, 2010, 22:06 GMT

    the biggest problems of all are selection on merit, the domestic set up is such that you need connections to get into those teams and then further contacts to get into the national squad. So much talent is unable to break through due to the cricket set up hindering the poor kids who cant break into the system. The millions that are accrued by the PCB should be re-invested in the local game so that PCB administered teams are created for the pool of poor kids who don't have the contacts to get into the department teams. You put these talented hungry players on a national platform and you'll see the next generation of Waqar,Wasims,Imrans & Miandads, guys with guts,love of the game and true talent. Lets change the domestic game,televise it nationally and internationally to increase its revenue and ensure top class domestic talent has an opportunity to play,this will draw in TV audiences and local attendances.Even highlights shows for the 4 day matches.

  • desihungama on January 2, 2010, 21:34 GMT

    Fielding comes from being pure atheletic as oppose to batting and bowling which are skills. Yousaf and Inti are right about having to department teams improve their fielding in general. If guy is a good bowler or batter, he doesn't bother to field. He gets the previledge of not having to field and learn FROM the ground. That is the crux of the problem. Until we pamper our domestic stars right from school level to professional, we will never be able to raise the fielding level even if you hire Jesus. Secondly, we don't have grassy fields on smaller levels. There, it's the job of PCB who are esconding millions to improve all cricketing grounds at domestic level and put some damn good grass in for our kids to go out and PLAY on it.

  • Mudassar Rana on January 2, 2010, 20:38 GMT

    without a doubt curious selection and strategy has played a massive part in our downfall. how i wish that the 11 who played at the mcg had shown the heart of aamir and akmal. our much vaunted attack was made to look like kids infront of messrs johnson, siddle, and bollinger. even hauritz who hasnt done anything all year we made him into a hero. The management were quick to send rauf back but whatabout farhat - who is an abysmal fielder and even worse batsman? surely it is blatant nepotism. this is why yousuf is palatable because he doesnt say anything. imran khan would not have had him in the pak z team nevermind the pro team. afridi and rana are both getting man of the match awards in australia - how much does that reveal poor man management, selection and strategy. the pak team is a mirror of the whole of our country. we run inspite of leaderhip not because of it. we need to bring in those who have heart and give all in their performance. 2 pakistanis versus 11 aussies is a disgrace.

  • asad ali khan durrani on January 2, 2010, 20:13 GMT

    i know one thing for sure, Fawad Alam deserve to play for Pakistan instead of "sifarshi" Faisal Iqbal. what a blow to send this Alam back home.

  • Adeel on January 2, 2010, 19:21 GMT

    Yeah, i read as well the comments of our captain Yousuf. its not enouraging to hear such desperate stance on fielding. I'm ready to believe that hard work have been done but still not fruitful. So the next thing is to inquire whether on field our players are agile 100% or not!

  • Jason on January 2, 2010, 19:07 GMT

    Kamran, are you alright? MoYo is a GOOD captain. All you have done here is criticize them. Of course 2020 is hurting the team. Their batting sucks, except for Umar and Yousuf. Fielding, are you kidding? We cannot catch pies. The domestic fields are so badly maintained players never dive. That IS THE ROOT of the problem. A specialist can only do so much. I challenge you to be more constructive and do not just write stuff because you have this platform. Be more constructive sir and understanding.

  • Mohd Rafi on January 2, 2010, 18:58 GMT

    Finding excuses and blaming others for all thats wrong despite fully knowing that sole responsibility for creating chaos and issues is by ownself is part of Pak culture. So if Pak cricketers are following same route why is everyone so critical of them. Cricket or sports is afterall a mirror of state of affairs in country. Accept facts, rectify them and all will be fine and cricket too.

  • farrukh on January 2, 2010, 18:56 GMT

    Let us swallow it that we have a mediocre team.Being mediocre is ok but selecting team on the basis of regionalism and nepotism is criminal.I live next to National Stadium Karachi.Compared to Qaddafi stadium this is a filthy and poorly maanaged ground.It is a clear evidence of regionlism.If you listen carefully to Rameez Raja commentary, he keeps quiet when a player from outside Punjab is playing well.On the other hand failed players like Butt, Malik and Farhat are showered with generous appreciations.I remember, when Rameez was the chief executive of PCB and Aamir Sohail was a selector, they used to praise Junaid Zia, son of PCB chief Tauqeer Zia.I wish Kamran Abbasi can identify these racist individuals of PCB so that we have the best of Pakistan talent in our team.

  • Raj Rathod on January 2, 2010, 18:37 GMT

    Pakistan needs Imran Khan right now. This man could have been an ideal coach. But he chose to indulge himself in politics of Pakistan. Why cant he help pakistani team?

  • kazim on January 2, 2010, 18:29 GMT

    Well Kamran you might be right,but Mohammed Yousuf in my opinion made a valid point about 20/20 cricket.We all know that Inti Alam as a coach is useless,why is he still in his position I really don't know?.I don't know how Pakistan is going to get back in this series,with Amer out of the game things just got a little more difficult.They need to improve their fielding if they have any chance of even competing,let alone winning.I do hope they can find some way of retrieving the situation.

  • Rashid on January 2, 2010, 18:17 GMT

    Please no blame game,wining or losing is part of the game.Just play professionally with a positive mind thats all we ask.

  • Muhammedh on January 2, 2010, 18:06 GMT

    Bottonline is whoever plays in the 11, they must dedicate, committed, play positive. No point in blaming anyone now.

    They all must deliver, let them show us they really fough hard, loyal to the country, etc.

    I am not pakistani but crazay pak cricket fan, understand how a diehard pak fan feels...

  • Tamil on January 2, 2010, 18:04 GMT

    Well, PCB need to teach proactive classes to everyone involved in cricket, also how to approach, how to do plan A,B,C and how to schedule.

    Top Frustations anyone agree here, 1. Keeping Afridi out of Tests -no matter still he needs to score in BigBash T20 2. Younis continue to fail - today's score of 9 - single digit again - but don't have to wait for him to prove once he proved PAK would have lost all Tests in this summer 3. No trying Afridi and Salman + Nazir as openers once for all for few years because my 10th sense says that any new openers are going to fail - lost my hopes after a decade of watching openers - Afridi is best of all

    Kamran, bhai, do you have any useful and real contacts with PCB, pass on these comments to them...let them forget about administrative cost of sending Younis, Afridi, Nazir...

    Keeping quality players outside is insane....

  • Muhammad Zaheer on January 2, 2010, 17:57 GMT

    It's not just Mo and Inti, from Politics to Cricket it's the same story in Pakistan. Hence, adding another excuse to their list that "it's our society with so much of lethargic attitude that it's always better to blame others then leading from the front...isn't it???". In one of your blogs before the start of this series I wrote in my comments that Pak have to be mentally tough to get the "W", but seems like our management and Captain are too hard core to make any changes for improvement. "Hey, Y'll when we have the excuses what the changes are all about??" But the change will come, just have to bear with the bad "timings" or rather "mistimings".

  • Masaud Khan on January 2, 2010, 17:56 GMT

    The legendary Mahmood Khan is singing the national anthem before the start of the test in Sydney, after making a number 1 hit in Australia with his epic song, Like The River. Pakistan Cricket team shuld get inspired by his recent achievement in Australia to perform better in this test.

  • Jamshed on January 2, 2010, 17:53 GMT

    Sorry Mr. Abbasi, but you really have to stop changing your point of view like this.When Pakistan were about to win PakSpin was all for it, but when they lose they must all be criticized for losing a Test. Admittedly it was pathetic, but don't write it as if you knew what would happen and it was all their fault and you hate them, but when the win you love them

  • Imran Zia on January 2, 2010, 17:38 GMT

    Cowards dont win even if they turn out on the losing side. Australia won because they back themselves and there captain to win and the bold declaration prove this. One feels it was about time someone got injured. As long as we play with four bowlers and your faster men bowling 25 overs a day it is asking for trouble. The bowlers become tired and cannot attack or bowl to there full potential. And for the batting and fielding you dont coach them you just have to select those who can do the job for you. My sympathies for Fawad Alam these lunatics dont like you!

  • Shahid on January 2, 2010, 17:24 GMT

    I do agree to your point, but at the same time I feel that you hesitate to name the real source of destruction. The problem No. 1 selctors have never been free to choose the team. It is always a one man show as it is always the chairman who has to approve the team. In other words it is him who dictates in all the team matters but never ready to take responsibility. No.2. Players are choosen on personal likings. Otherwise no one could justify selection of Faisal for the last 6 years running. There are players who perform only every 7th match and that too on dead wickets but are kept in the team for years.

    No.3 Players are asked to prove their game in domestic setup, but those who do perfom strongly in domestic games, are not given chances even when there are non performing spots to be filled.

    All in all, the whole of the administration system is flawed. and it is ought to be when a Politician (president) awrds the CEO spot on political basis, and the that CEO does the same

  • Nasir Ulhaq on January 2, 2010, 16:52 GMT

    You are right, these are all excuses - does these excuses cover Kamran and companies fatal shots and dropping of umpteen catches, no it does not. We have failed to prove that we are professionals. The cricket board is equally responsible for this downward trend of our cricket team for which there must be strong person to head PCB who understands sports - like Nur Khan.

  • DavidWarner on January 2, 2010, 16:35 GMT

    Sounds like PakSpin is changing tunes rapidly from giddy optimism to utter despair in a matter of days :-) I agree with the latest sentiment though. Be afraid, Kamran bhai, be very afraid. Aussies are out to slaughter the hapless Pakistanis. I think your breathless predictions of 2-1 in Pakistan's favor just before the MCG test have turned out to be pipe dreams, don't you agree?

    As for the other usual tripe trotted out by the Pakistani scribes to somehow cover the utter ineptitude of their team - that Pakistan hasn't played much cricket of late. I looked it up, and since Jan 01 2006, Pakistan has played 14 fewer tests than India (29 vs 43). A difference on the average of 3 tests per year. This is supposed to make Pak fans feel better? If Pak has played 3 tests more per year, they would've been world beaters like the Indians?

    Ha ha.. Please wake up and smell the roses Kamran bhai.. Pakistan Sux!! They are the worst in the world, no offence to WI, Bangladesh and Zimbabwe!!! :-)

  • Geevah on January 2, 2010, 16:24 GMT

    I tend to disagree with you Karman. I believe Inti is correct that the fielding problem can't be resolved overnight. We are the nation of superficial fixes. Every time our team loses, we change the PBC chief. The new chief in turn sacks the selection committee, who in turn change a few players, and we are right back to the same problem.

    I think it was Richie Benaud, who said that Australians got tired of losing to WI in the eighties and decided to do something about it. They took some measures, and it took 15 years to show results. It was not until 1999 that the Australian became a formidable team. That is what Pakistan needs. We need to leave the head of the PCB for some time, so that he has a time to implement a program which would benefit us in the coming years.

    I believe General Tauqeer Zia was doing a great job and he was trying to implement a program like that. However, being the nation of “show me results now” and they let him go.

  • Jansher on January 2, 2010, 16:19 GMT

    As long as fundamentalism, corruption and sectarian violence continues in PAK, don't expect our country or cricket team to get any better. The key is education, be it to the lowliest sepoy or the intl cricket star. An educated population maintains higher standards in all walks of life. Until this curse of religious fundamentalism is lifted don't expect our once beautiful country to succeed in anything on the world stage

  • Dr. Islam on January 2, 2010, 16:15 GMT

    See, what we the audience are saying for the last few days that 4 bowlers option was real bad, everyone cried for Afridi who could give some break to the fast bowlers and could score few runs too, might pick wickets as well. The selectors did not pay attention. Now they (the selectors and the captain-coach) have caused injury to Ameer by giving him the overload of the 5th bowler. Is there any insane man in this world who would do this given the list of so many injury to some bright prospects in the past. Read the article written few weeks back by one of the fast bowlers whose career ended because he was overused. He warned about ameer, but the selectors did not listen. This is called Pakistani style. You can give all the rational in the world, but the block-head, low IQ people would not understand. Dumb people learn in a hard way, and I do hope they will learn now, but no guarantee. Will there be an all rounder in the team for the 2nd test?

  • AM on January 2, 2010, 15:57 GMT

    I think there is some truth to what the Captain and the Coach are saying. Apart from the batting and fielding failures, there is this perpetual slow start of the Pakistani cricketers whenever a new series starts especially one that starts abroad. This has been the case for as long as one can remember, even before the days of Imran Khan. Why has no one taken the trouble to address this issue? To me this suggests that either no one concerned with running Pakistan cricket cares or gives it much thought. It seems that on each foreign tour the Pakistan cricketers have to go through a steep learning curve before their performance can match international standards. That is hardly the time to be learning the basics of test cricket. No wonder we are always struggling against teams like Australia. Unless Pakistan's teams can simulate or replicate as closely as possible the conditions which they will encounter while on tour abroad, the results are always going to be dismal.

  • Yousuf on January 2, 2010, 15:35 GMT

    While I agree with most of your postings, I don't necessarily think this posting makes sense. I don't think the management are making excuses per se, they are bemoaning some clear facts which needs to be addressed in a meaningful way for Pakistan cricket to improve for the future, not necessarily for this series. There are some serious structural issues with domestic cricket (albeit it has been around for ever), that must be addressed for any chance of future success.

    Sadly, I agree that prospects for the current series is pretty bleak. For starters, if Pakistan end up batting first at Sydney, the match could meaningfully be over by lunch!

  • AsadAK on January 2, 2010, 15:32 GMT

    Kamran bhai u are right on the money. PCB has bunch of jokers who have no clue how to run cricket affairs.They already know it will be whitewash therefore they have started giving these excuses.

  • Muzammil Saeed on January 2, 2010, 15:15 GMT

    Why blame the Yousaf and Intikhab only (or present coach and the captain). The players dont have that passion for the WIN over the opposition. They are "playing" for the country. They dont want to become living lehend or atleast legends. Should not they work hard on their fielding. One thing is for sure..if one wants to do something and does hardwok for it, nothing can stop him and GOD helps him as well. Just compare these players with the players o early 90s, you will gt the difference.

  • Badar on January 2, 2010, 15:12 GMT

    Well said. Pakistani blame culture is horrid. Yosuf conveniently blames Twenty20 for batting woes, but what about the 1st inning toothless bowling performance. Yosuf isn't really captain material. But unfortunately, there isn't any other candidate out there either.

  • Maindad on January 2, 2010, 14:33 GMT

    well said Imran, Pakistan need to find more Umar Akmal's and M> Amir's in their under 19 team and domestic team, stop giving so many chances to Salman Bhat, Imran Farhat, Faisal, Malik and Misbah, come recruit new blood selectors. Pleaseeeeeeeeeeeee

  • Imran Khan on January 2, 2010, 14:30 GMT

    why are all of you worrying so much I am sure Pak will lose the series 3-0, until and unless we dont change the selection committee, who select sick openers and sick players. Go for young talent like India does, look at Raina, Jadeja, Kohli, Rohit Sharma and a young captian in Dhoni. Yousf talks about T20 because he is not selected in that team who Pak is the world champion. Nanch na jane angan teda.

  • Mufti on January 2, 2010, 14:08 GMT

    Farhat: blame aussie bowlers 4 not being able to bowl knee high deliveries consistently.

    S butt: i am maintaining my bradmanish average (0.99).

    Faisal: blame Javaid miandad who keeps bringing me here.

    Yousuf: blame ipl, pcb & icl 4 not giving me chance at t20, i am jealous.

    Umar akmal: hey ipl is calling, got 2 go.

    Misbah: my age(99), nobody can beat me.

    Kamran: where is irfan pathan and co.

    Aamer: [umar gul hits his head] i am mohd sami.

    Rouf: australian pitches donot suit my spin bowling.

    Asif: give me nandrolone and charas, or i just cant...

    Ajmal: c ya at abu dhabi.

  • Imran on January 2, 2010, 14:02 GMT

    Waqar's job is to coach whoever they select,what can he do with untalented players like Abdur Rauf,whoever selected him needs to be fined. Why couldn't Misbah or Yousuf be a man and bat at 3 then we could've groomed Fawad at number 6.Maybe thats the trick a bit of politics to keep the youngsters out.If you're not an opener fair enough but as a Test batsman should be willing to bat anywhere between 3-6,you're either good enough or not.Notice how Aus don't really care about T20,its only us who hype it up so much.Plus we don't care about test cricket and after this series will quickly forget and gloss over if we do well in the ODI's. Any team that can only make 250 in a test match on a flat pitch is absolutely rubbish,so Ijaz Butt saying no change is needed and everyone did well is outrageous.He's hardly going to blame his selection policy, bring on the U19's and get rid of the revolving door failures.Inzi used to sit out fielding practice so what culture was promoted,aloo culture.

  • Adeel Khan on January 2, 2010, 13:49 GMT

    Right on the money

  • usman paracha on January 2, 2010, 13:43 GMT

    i still think , we need to get afridi back into the national team , we are badly missing an all rounder , and a fifth bowler , openers dont do much anyway , so afridi can be sent as an opener , he can make the same 20-25 runs like imran or salman ( in less time off course) but pakistan will get an edge in bowling , and that can make a world of difference plus with younis not there we need senior players to handle the pressure of playing in australia

  • EAMIran on January 2, 2010, 13:19 GMT

    While Asif exerts some control whenever he bowls, I suspect he needs 2 ingredients to be successful. He either requires an outright quickie bowling at the other end, exerting a different type of pressure on the batsmen (like Akhter or Aamer) or seaming English/NZ type wickets. In Sydney he will have neither. Advice to Sami: It is ok to follow through and glare at the batsmen if you back it up with some wickets. Take that pent up aggro in the nets and learn how to move the damn ball. Advice to Gul: Go to the nets, paint a large red patch on the wicket at a good length and proceed to bowl continuously at the patch for a lengthy period of time. Also, the seam may not at any time, be scrambled. Advice to Waqar and Inti: Purchase a cattle prod or 2 (an over the counter purchase in the land of beef) & proceed to use them on Sami and Gul should they deviate from their lessons. Prod may be used liberally in fielding drills & in instances of batting failure. Advice to PCB: Get Stuffed!

  • P Subramani on January 2, 2010, 13:16 GMT

    Pakistan heve a pretty good team which is capable of matching the best that Australia can put across.I think it is their abysmal fielding that is the cause because they have avaried bowling attack capable of troubling the best and a fair enough batting they should have played better at the MCG. Possibly Yousuf does not have the luck. A factor which I thought Younis had as evidenced from the 20/20/World Cup win. I feel they will do well at the SCG even if they do not win. They have the ammunition even without the loss of Aamer,

  • Muhammad Haziq on January 2, 2010, 12:47 GMT

    Good going........He all the time blaming and criticizing PCB, players (Shoab Malik) and now the current squad. Was there anyone who deadly sure kah Pak will win T20 Worldcup. We had won T20 Cup just bcoz of right batting and bowling combination and fighting sprite…….At the moment MoYo demoralize our moral as well as team sprite. Specially he has not trust our youth,he is making Buddha XI,very very sad situation are now let c what happen / blunder next.........!

  • EAMiran on January 2, 2010, 12:43 GMT

    The writing is on the wall and the management know it. After losing the 2nd test, and lets not kid ourselves Pakistan will lose in Sydney, excuse # 4 will be "Aamer got injured the eve of the game". I am seriously disappointed that the 1 bowler who could help get Australia out twice will not be playing. Frustrated that it was bound to happen, given his recent workload. Irate that the monkeys in the PCB, management and selectors, chose to send, and then play an over-the-hill bowler that added to this workload. Depressed that Gul, who to my knowledge has not won a single test for Pakistan, combined with Sami, who has never moved the ball off the straight are both going to play instead. Combined with the over-hyped Kaneria, who has also never bowled Pakistan to a win against top opposition and we have a catastrophe in the making. When Asif bowls 35 over spells in each innings, watch out for another injury. We may go to Perth with 2 lame pacers and 2 literally lame pacers.

  • A on January 2, 2010, 12:38 GMT

    But what exactly are MoYo and Alam supposed to do though? This team, unlike past Pakistani teams, is just not filled with good enough talent. Yeah, everyone likes to say they've got talent, they just don't use it to their fullest, but honestly, I don't see it. Then there's the fact that even the few who do have some raw talent may not want to work hard to improve. It all lies in their mentality. Coming from small villages, many of our cricketers start behaving like divas, after a single noteworthy performance. And then it's like, there's no better expert than them on cricket. So how are MoYo and Alam supposed to change this mentality?

  • khalil on January 2, 2010, 12:33 GMT

    Kamran,we are intolerant.No body likes criticism,you,me & everyone.So why all this fuss.Consider it as a game & work on the basics. Merit, physical fitness & accountability.If you make chairman board,a selector,a coach/trainer,a captain accountable,all will fall in line. Just tell me, how many involved in our cricket has been held accountable & punished if found guilty/ breaching the code of conduct. None I think.

  • Shafique on January 2, 2010, 12:29 GMT

    Nothing can help Pakistan team in this situation,this is a group of non-professionals we can not consider this a spirited team.Losing is not a matter but the way we loose match is ridiculous.I have not seen any team in the world who lose match by themselves.We have to educate our cricketer that how to behave professionally as they are representing a proud nation.We do not need excuses we really want hard work and fighting spirit.Any way best of luck for Pak team.

  • Anil on January 2, 2010, 12:25 GMT

    The major issue here is the team composition. Have a look at the stats below where i have the top 3 batsman from Pak & India and their corresponding record (at the time of their initial playing days):

    ---Player--- T - Avg - 100's Imran Farhat 31 - 34.10 - 3 Salman Butt 25 - 29.26 - 2 Faisal Iqbal 25 - 27.25 - 1

    ---Player--- T - Avg - 100's G. Gambhir 27 - 56.73 - 8 V. Sehwag 29 - 53.44 - 8 R. Dravid 32 - 52.68 - 6

    The figure speak for themselves where Pakistan is going wrong. The top 3 batsman more or less decide the fate of things to come and facts prove that teams down the years, having good top 3 batsman eventually have better win records.

  • Sajid Mahmood Awan, Valley Soon Sakesar, Khushab on January 2, 2010, 12:11 GMT

    Pakistan team cannot gel together unless they take responsibility. They need to be on high/red alert to take catches and do better ground fielding. I am disappointed that Pakistan team is not looking ahead to 2011 World Cup as far as their performance is concerned. If Salman Butt and Imran Farhat fail in the last two tests, then Pakistan selectors must drop them so that the deserving ones can get a chance. I still think that Pakistan is more than capable to clinch victory in SCG.

  • tariq on January 2, 2010, 12:07 GMT

    i totally disagree with mohammed yousuf statement that twenty 20 is useless and it has ruined test cricket format.There is nothing to do with it. pakistan team need good fielding coach,then only our team fielding can improve. Batting is still a worry sign for pakistan team. lets hope pakistan play well in sydney test good luck for our team.

  • kamran on January 2, 2010, 12:00 GMT

    mr abbasi again I must say your article is a load of tripe, other than "excuse number 2" I find the explanations by Mohammed Yousuf and Alam to be perfectly plausible, how can you say that 20/20 has helped the cause of test cricket, 20/20 has taught our batsmen that by having a hit and a giggle they will be able to win matches and do you actually expect batmen such as Imran Farhat or Salman Butt to be able to concentrate on playing long test innings when by playing they're shots in 20/20 cricket they have been able to score runs. I agree with you for you "second excuse" Pakistan have to improve their fielding dramatically. But for your third "excuse" you havent even given an explanation, no this was a poorly written article and I think you have got this all wrong.

  • Wasim Khan on January 2, 2010, 11:43 GMT

    Thank you for higlighting the MYOPIC statements of Mo Youssuf that a Binge of Twenty 20s caused this batting madness. You're Spot on to state that most batsmen's careers predate the T20 rash that took over them (remember Farhat's shot before lunch en-route to his century in NZ?!) It is disparaging if not Scandalous that we have managed to produce just TWO fine batsman(Inzi and MoYo) over the past two decades...and that too they're record in Australia and South Africa is appalling averaging in the 30s. The malaise lies in the temperament (or lack of it). T20 has increased run acceleration and made test matches much more watchable and result oriented, than tepid draws of the 70s and 80s. In stead of making excuses and looking for someone to blame as is our national character, we must all take collective responsibility....something that has so far proved thoroughly alien to us. Unless we do so we're unlikely to make headway

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  • Wasim Khan on January 2, 2010, 11:43 GMT

    Thank you for higlighting the MYOPIC statements of Mo Youssuf that a Binge of Twenty 20s caused this batting madness. You're Spot on to state that most batsmen's careers predate the T20 rash that took over them (remember Farhat's shot before lunch en-route to his century in NZ?!) It is disparaging if not Scandalous that we have managed to produce just TWO fine batsman(Inzi and MoYo) over the past two decades...and that too they're record in Australia and South Africa is appalling averaging in the 30s. The malaise lies in the temperament (or lack of it). T20 has increased run acceleration and made test matches much more watchable and result oriented, than tepid draws of the 70s and 80s. In stead of making excuses and looking for someone to blame as is our national character, we must all take collective responsibility....something that has so far proved thoroughly alien to us. Unless we do so we're unlikely to make headway

  • kamran on January 2, 2010, 12:00 GMT

    mr abbasi again I must say your article is a load of tripe, other than "excuse number 2" I find the explanations by Mohammed Yousuf and Alam to be perfectly plausible, how can you say that 20/20 has helped the cause of test cricket, 20/20 has taught our batsmen that by having a hit and a giggle they will be able to win matches and do you actually expect batmen such as Imran Farhat or Salman Butt to be able to concentrate on playing long test innings when by playing they're shots in 20/20 cricket they have been able to score runs. I agree with you for you "second excuse" Pakistan have to improve their fielding dramatically. But for your third "excuse" you havent even given an explanation, no this was a poorly written article and I think you have got this all wrong.

  • tariq on January 2, 2010, 12:07 GMT

    i totally disagree with mohammed yousuf statement that twenty 20 is useless and it has ruined test cricket format.There is nothing to do with it. pakistan team need good fielding coach,then only our team fielding can improve. Batting is still a worry sign for pakistan team. lets hope pakistan play well in sydney test good luck for our team.

  • Sajid Mahmood Awan, Valley Soon Sakesar, Khushab on January 2, 2010, 12:11 GMT

    Pakistan team cannot gel together unless they take responsibility. They need to be on high/red alert to take catches and do better ground fielding. I am disappointed that Pakistan team is not looking ahead to 2011 World Cup as far as their performance is concerned. If Salman Butt and Imran Farhat fail in the last two tests, then Pakistan selectors must drop them so that the deserving ones can get a chance. I still think that Pakistan is more than capable to clinch victory in SCG.

  • Anil on January 2, 2010, 12:25 GMT

    The major issue here is the team composition. Have a look at the stats below where i have the top 3 batsman from Pak & India and their corresponding record (at the time of their initial playing days):

    ---Player--- T - Avg - 100's Imran Farhat 31 - 34.10 - 3 Salman Butt 25 - 29.26 - 2 Faisal Iqbal 25 - 27.25 - 1

    ---Player--- T - Avg - 100's G. Gambhir 27 - 56.73 - 8 V. Sehwag 29 - 53.44 - 8 R. Dravid 32 - 52.68 - 6

    The figure speak for themselves where Pakistan is going wrong. The top 3 batsman more or less decide the fate of things to come and facts prove that teams down the years, having good top 3 batsman eventually have better win records.

  • Shafique on January 2, 2010, 12:29 GMT

    Nothing can help Pakistan team in this situation,this is a group of non-professionals we can not consider this a spirited team.Losing is not a matter but the way we loose match is ridiculous.I have not seen any team in the world who lose match by themselves.We have to educate our cricketer that how to behave professionally as they are representing a proud nation.We do not need excuses we really want hard work and fighting spirit.Any way best of luck for Pak team.

  • khalil on January 2, 2010, 12:33 GMT

    Kamran,we are intolerant.No body likes criticism,you,me & everyone.So why all this fuss.Consider it as a game & work on the basics. Merit, physical fitness & accountability.If you make chairman board,a selector,a coach/trainer,a captain accountable,all will fall in line. Just tell me, how many involved in our cricket has been held accountable & punished if found guilty/ breaching the code of conduct. None I think.

  • A on January 2, 2010, 12:38 GMT

    But what exactly are MoYo and Alam supposed to do though? This team, unlike past Pakistani teams, is just not filled with good enough talent. Yeah, everyone likes to say they've got talent, they just don't use it to their fullest, but honestly, I don't see it. Then there's the fact that even the few who do have some raw talent may not want to work hard to improve. It all lies in their mentality. Coming from small villages, many of our cricketers start behaving like divas, after a single noteworthy performance. And then it's like, there's no better expert than them on cricket. So how are MoYo and Alam supposed to change this mentality?

  • EAMiran on January 2, 2010, 12:43 GMT

    The writing is on the wall and the management know it. After losing the 2nd test, and lets not kid ourselves Pakistan will lose in Sydney, excuse # 4 will be "Aamer got injured the eve of the game". I am seriously disappointed that the 1 bowler who could help get Australia out twice will not be playing. Frustrated that it was bound to happen, given his recent workload. Irate that the monkeys in the PCB, management and selectors, chose to send, and then play an over-the-hill bowler that added to this workload. Depressed that Gul, who to my knowledge has not won a single test for Pakistan, combined with Sami, who has never moved the ball off the straight are both going to play instead. Combined with the over-hyped Kaneria, who has also never bowled Pakistan to a win against top opposition and we have a catastrophe in the making. When Asif bowls 35 over spells in each innings, watch out for another injury. We may go to Perth with 2 lame pacers and 2 literally lame pacers.

  • Muhammad Haziq on January 2, 2010, 12:47 GMT

    Good going........He all the time blaming and criticizing PCB, players (Shoab Malik) and now the current squad. Was there anyone who deadly sure kah Pak will win T20 Worldcup. We had won T20 Cup just bcoz of right batting and bowling combination and fighting sprite…….At the moment MoYo demoralize our moral as well as team sprite. Specially he has not trust our youth,he is making Buddha XI,very very sad situation are now let c what happen / blunder next.........!