Mike Holmans July 16, 2010

It's back to the drawing board for Pakistan

The limp subsidence to defeat after lunch was a depressing anti-climax after what had been a fascinating and highly enjoyable Test
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Shahid Afridi has had enough of Test cricket © Getty Images

I am sorry that Shahid Afridi will not be appearing in the Test series against England which starts next month. He is one of those players who lights up a cricket field and guarantees that a match will not be dull, at least when he is taking an active part. He himself had not really wanted to come back to Test cricket, but he was prepared to give it a go when pleaded with by the folks back home. Having given it a go, he has shown that his original view was right.

I was sceptical of the view that he only knows one way to bat, but he has proved it correct. That it's a way which has its place in Test cricket there is no doubt, as my defence of his second-afternoon assault attempted to show, but there are plenty of times when it is highly inappropriate, such as on the fourth afternoon. The situation when he came to the crease for the second time was again not at all good for Pakistan, but after he had holed out it was considerably worse, which had not been the case on Wednesday.

I did not think Wednesday's innings was stupid, reckless or irresponsible in the circumstances, but Friday's was utterly gormless.

It won't stop me being a fan, though, especially as he has taught me the true meaning of “larger-than-life”. I happened to be walking through the Long Room when he went out to bat on Wednesday. As we passed, I murmured “good luck” to him, then while I carried on to my seat, it struck me that he was a couple of inches shorter and rather slenderer, particularly in the arms, than I had thought he was. Perhaps he inflates as he crosses the boundary rope, but he does look bigger out there (to me, anyway) than he is in real life.

Since Afridi had only been brought back because the Test team needed a captain, his departure means someone else will have to don the fireproof suit and learn to swim through the oceans of ordure which are the sorry lot of any Pakistan skipper. The rumours suggest it will be Salman Butt, though the fact that he is currently the vice-captain means it will probably be someone else. Nothing is ever as it seems where the PCB is involved.

I have no idea whether he would make a good captain, but Butt was the only Pakistani batsman to emerge from the Test with real credit. He kept his cool in the first innings while the wickets cascaded at the other end. In the second innings he set about the task of building the kind of platform from which a victory push could be made with considerable skill. He really ought to have had a ton, but he made a rare mistake when within sight of it. The idea of his shot was sound but he messed up the execution, which is a pity, but not worthy of criticism. It was not a failure of temperament, since he has amply demonstrated his credentials as a Test match opener in challenging situations.

The rest were awful in the first innings but mostly adequate the second time round – though nothing more than adequate.

What did for Pakistan was being the team who were batting when conditions were at their worst. The way the Pakistani pacemen bowled, Australia would have been all out for under 100 if they had been in on Wednesday. After that calamitous session it was always going to be incredibly difficult to get back into the game but they did not give up until Umar Akmal had his Ian Bell moment, lazily gifting his wicket to the nondescript spinner on the stroke of lunch.

The limp subsidence to defeat after lunch was a depressing anti-climax after what had been a fascinating and highly enjoyable Test. If this is what we are going to get from neutral Tests at Lord's, I for one, want more.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • London brunette on July 28, 2010, 6:22 GMT

    It was rather interesting for me to read that post. Thanks the author for it. I like such topics and everything that is connected to them. I definitely want to read more on that blog soon.

    Bella Smith

  • shamas on July 20, 2010, 6:59 GMT

    I really don't understand why we are forcing Muhammad Yousaf and Younis to come back and built up a new team in this situation. We all know they are out for missing behaviour with team mates. Both are in the team along with Shoaib Malik & Misbah when pakistan lost complete tour earliar this year in Australia. Is it any surity that Pakistan must win with them. They must change their behavior and then give their greatness to pakistan team. If they put back in this situation they will continue their bad behavior in dressing room and jouniors may also involve in this as we see Umar Akmal in past. We must understand pakistan must grow with young guns very soon but if we take both great batsman back with their current behaviors then their is no chance of improvements and history will repeat itself soon again.

  • Farrukh Liaqat on July 20, 2010, 5:51 GMT

    Good Job Afridi, I am proud of you. This man has shown spirit unlike many other players who would sit under the captaincy hat and wait till they are kicked out. He felt straight away that his temprament is not of 5 days format of the game so decided not only to give up captaincy but also his pull out from test cricket.

    One thing is very much clear, Shahid afridi plays for his country, not for the money or himself.

    Now we all want him to lift the limited over game World Cup. Inshallah he can do it provided that PCB also plays it serious role and make a team without any politcal influence.

  • wasim raja on July 19, 2010, 21:08 GMT

    i think we should keep thet same team and give yasir hameed chance on afridi who dosent deserve place in longer formate,and i think yousaf and younas were great players but they no gona do miricale we should stick with azher ali and amin they will be pak future plz plz n two y

  • Gohar on July 19, 2010, 6:50 GMT

    I was really disappointed by the decision of Afridi, as he was a natural Fighter. Now, i announce retirement from Watching Test Cricket.

  • Abrk on July 19, 2010, 0:44 GMT

    at "Narayan G" : get a out of typical indian jealousy with Pakistan Crickters and Read history about Pakistan and India Cricket, it will show who is Lion and who is Pussy Cat. Pakistan is leading the rivalry in Tests and Odi's. Hats off for Afridi.

  • Mehwish Khan on July 18, 2010, 16:17 GMT

    Brilliant piece, Holmans. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it, keep writing for Pakistani Cricketers. I persoanlly think it's a great move by Afridi to retire. Hope the new appointed captain- Butt proves to be a good choice.

  • umair on July 18, 2010, 13:28 GMT

    hey friends this is good time for afridi i know he is good captian and good leader but u know in pcb no body like afridi as a captian but if afridi is not captian in odi and t20 i say pakistan not won the world cup he can out 1st round if afridi is not captian he have some qulati same imran khan that why he is brave captian i like his captince in asia cup but i dont know pcb what is doing what pbc think waht is the future of pakistan cricket plz any one come in front and take this pressure in our had that is good for pakistan cricket......

  • Aslam on July 18, 2010, 13:12 GMT

    Both Azhar Ali and Umar Amin should remain in the side. The former should move up to open with Salman Butt. If Younis is drafted into the side (will require a statesmanlike decision from Ijaz Butt, which is not his forte)for the Headingly match then he will be at number 3 position. Followed by Umar Amin, Umar Akmal, Shoaib Malik, Kamran Akmal and then the four bowlers. Kamran is not a number six batsman. Both brothers need to show a lot of maturity though.

    For the next series against England if Mohammad Yousuf comes back then he should replace Shoaib Malik though not necessarily in the same batting position.

  • Anonymous on July 18, 2010, 12:48 GMT

    comments from fans are awlful! why we keep loosing is because we keeping recalling players like yousuf and younase who are past their sell by date! younase started the trend of players retiring from the game and then being recalled weeks later, both have abused the privelidge of playing for their country, younis has resigned from the captaincy halve way through a tour, at the start of a tour, yousuf joined the ICL becuase he wasnt picked for T20, if we keep recalling them we do only damage to pakistan cricket. Younase hasnt been scoring in county this year, stop assessing them on their past performances. Cricketeres, averages, etc are all made over time, we need to show faith in these youngesters, Inzamam didnt score many runs in his first 10 test matches. As for Malik honestly if anyone supports malik they serious need help, the guy is a goon! how can you marry someone online, and have him repersent pakistan..he is mentally retarted,and awlful player

  • London brunette on July 28, 2010, 6:22 GMT

    It was rather interesting for me to read that post. Thanks the author for it. I like such topics and everything that is connected to them. I definitely want to read more on that blog soon.

    Bella Smith

  • shamas on July 20, 2010, 6:59 GMT

    I really don't understand why we are forcing Muhammad Yousaf and Younis to come back and built up a new team in this situation. We all know they are out for missing behaviour with team mates. Both are in the team along with Shoaib Malik & Misbah when pakistan lost complete tour earliar this year in Australia. Is it any surity that Pakistan must win with them. They must change their behavior and then give their greatness to pakistan team. If they put back in this situation they will continue their bad behavior in dressing room and jouniors may also involve in this as we see Umar Akmal in past. We must understand pakistan must grow with young guns very soon but if we take both great batsman back with their current behaviors then their is no chance of improvements and history will repeat itself soon again.

  • Farrukh Liaqat on July 20, 2010, 5:51 GMT

    Good Job Afridi, I am proud of you. This man has shown spirit unlike many other players who would sit under the captaincy hat and wait till they are kicked out. He felt straight away that his temprament is not of 5 days format of the game so decided not only to give up captaincy but also his pull out from test cricket.

    One thing is very much clear, Shahid afridi plays for his country, not for the money or himself.

    Now we all want him to lift the limited over game World Cup. Inshallah he can do it provided that PCB also plays it serious role and make a team without any politcal influence.

  • wasim raja on July 19, 2010, 21:08 GMT

    i think we should keep thet same team and give yasir hameed chance on afridi who dosent deserve place in longer formate,and i think yousaf and younas were great players but they no gona do miricale we should stick with azher ali and amin they will be pak future plz plz n two y

  • Gohar on July 19, 2010, 6:50 GMT

    I was really disappointed by the decision of Afridi, as he was a natural Fighter. Now, i announce retirement from Watching Test Cricket.

  • Abrk on July 19, 2010, 0:44 GMT

    at "Narayan G" : get a out of typical indian jealousy with Pakistan Crickters and Read history about Pakistan and India Cricket, it will show who is Lion and who is Pussy Cat. Pakistan is leading the rivalry in Tests and Odi's. Hats off for Afridi.

  • Mehwish Khan on July 18, 2010, 16:17 GMT

    Brilliant piece, Holmans. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it, keep writing for Pakistani Cricketers. I persoanlly think it's a great move by Afridi to retire. Hope the new appointed captain- Butt proves to be a good choice.

  • umair on July 18, 2010, 13:28 GMT

    hey friends this is good time for afridi i know he is good captian and good leader but u know in pcb no body like afridi as a captian but if afridi is not captian in odi and t20 i say pakistan not won the world cup he can out 1st round if afridi is not captian he have some qulati same imran khan that why he is brave captian i like his captince in asia cup but i dont know pcb what is doing what pbc think waht is the future of pakistan cricket plz any one come in front and take this pressure in our had that is good for pakistan cricket......

  • Aslam on July 18, 2010, 13:12 GMT

    Both Azhar Ali and Umar Amin should remain in the side. The former should move up to open with Salman Butt. If Younis is drafted into the side (will require a statesmanlike decision from Ijaz Butt, which is not his forte)for the Headingly match then he will be at number 3 position. Followed by Umar Amin, Umar Akmal, Shoaib Malik, Kamran Akmal and then the four bowlers. Kamran is not a number six batsman. Both brothers need to show a lot of maturity though.

    For the next series against England if Mohammad Yousuf comes back then he should replace Shoaib Malik though not necessarily in the same batting position.

  • Anonymous on July 18, 2010, 12:48 GMT

    comments from fans are awlful! why we keep loosing is because we keeping recalling players like yousuf and younase who are past their sell by date! younase started the trend of players retiring from the game and then being recalled weeks later, both have abused the privelidge of playing for their country, younis has resigned from the captaincy halve way through a tour, at the start of a tour, yousuf joined the ICL becuase he wasnt picked for T20, if we keep recalling them we do only damage to pakistan cricket. Younase hasnt been scoring in county this year, stop assessing them on their past performances. Cricketeres, averages, etc are all made over time, we need to show faith in these youngesters, Inzamam didnt score many runs in his first 10 test matches. As for Malik honestly if anyone supports malik they serious need help, the guy is a goon! how can you marry someone online, and have him repersent pakistan..he is mentally retarted,and awlful player

  • waleed on July 18, 2010, 12:46 GMT

    afridi played really well......wow

  • Khawaja Ikram Ul Haq on July 18, 2010, 12:12 GMT

    Afridi was probably blocking a place in the test side with kaneria being the regular off spinner...salman But who has a habit of not getting along with the other opening batsman is now the senior batsman in the team...he can pick a new opener and a new batsman in the middle order...bringing back the old guys is probably not the best way to go about it.. i would suggest bringing in two more new batsmen...guys like naved yasin or m ayub from sialkot...or there might be others coming up...we do need talent that does not have tobe moulded and go straight in and hammer teh bowling...it is the selectors job to bring in the right batsmen at the right time in their careers...when they are in form and they are also needed in the team...half measures of going back and forth never work...

  • Muhammad Abdul Azim on July 18, 2010, 11:40 GMT

    PCB,please wake up,you need Younis Khan & Mohammad Yousuf at 3 and 4,if you are thinking of wining any Test Matched in England...

  • Faisal malik on July 18, 2010, 10:50 GMT

    The Best Odi & T20 cricket team for PAKISTAN

    1. Salman Butt 2. Imran Nazir 3. Saeed Anwar / Imran Farhat / Shauib Malik / Yasir Hameed 4. Younis Khan / Misbah ul Haq/ NEW Commers.. 5. Umer Akmal 6. Shahid Afridi 7. Kamran Akmal 8. Mohmmad Aamer 9. Umer Gul 10. Mohmmad Asif / Shuaib Akthar / Mohmmad Sammi / Azhar Mehmood 11. Spinners choose one or simply select Shauib Malik if not selected, and permot him to number 4 position.

    i think this is the best team that pakistan can have i think every one will agree with my choice selection

  • Naz on July 18, 2010, 10:36 GMT

    I blame the board for this latest saga, Afridi was never interested in captaining the Test team...he took it reluctantly. Now there are whispers the board have contacted Yusuf to return as a player. The point is, if the board wanted a reluctant Afridi to takeover the reins they should have at least given him the players required to do the job and overturn a dismal run. On the flip side, Afridi typically reacted before thinking! Why not wait till the end of the 2nd test vs Aus to make any such announcement or the day after the 1st test....why create such unnecessary drama??

    What further adds insult to injury, the one player accused of causing the major disharmony is Malik, yet he will find himself playing under Salman B - this can only lead to disaster. Salman should be given a choice of which players he wants and needs to do the job. Either take back the old or persist with the new players and ignore the Test results..

    Test temperament cant be accelerated, unfortunately..

  • faisal malik on July 18, 2010, 10:14 GMT

    we need IMRAN NAZIR in pakistani team in odi's t20's and as well as in Test Cricket.

  • mswu on July 18, 2010, 9:02 GMT

    Goodluck Salman Butt for leading pakistan controversial team don't worry in next test against england there will be another new captain

  • sridhar on July 18, 2010, 6:38 GMT

    When Salman and Nazir were batting at 15o for 1, Ponting was seriously worried. But Pakistan has this tremendous ability to self-destruct and blaming it on the conditions is a bit rich. I think overall the conditions were more or less the same, one difficult innings and one easy innings. I think the turning point was Paine's stumping of Salman who needlessly had a moment of madness and rushed out to the first ball he received from a part time bowler. As for Afridi, I think he leaves his brains behnd in the pavilion when he goes to bat and there was no greater evidence of that than in the second innings. I feel sorry for Pak cricket as it lurches from one crisis to the other , none more than having no home advantage , though I sincerely believe that their style of bowling at least is best suited to english conditions and they will always be a force there. Pray tell me which team can put Watson"s and North's name in the bowling honours list other than Pakistan! ramanujam sridhar

  • Shabut on July 18, 2010, 6:03 GMT

    Why do we keep going back to Yousuf and Younis. They were great players and had their share. Let's stick to the future now and stop going back to the past.

  • Abul Hasnat on July 18, 2010, 5:37 GMT

    First I wish to thank you for spending your time in doing such a good service to the game of cricket-running an excellent blog.

    Earlier I had indicated my preference in the selection of the next Pakistan captain after Shahid Afridi's resignation. First criteria in my opinion is "a player must earn a position by demonstating its playing skills" which included batting and or bowling or both along with fielding skills. Salman on occasions has demonstrated batting skills and has shown very poor judgement as a fielder. He has dropped very simple catches in Australia and I certainly thought that he was not ready for the job.

    At this pointin in time there is only one choice "YOUNIS KHAN" who seems to have all the required skills. Yousuf must also return for he is the best Pakistan batsman.

    Last, I can understand frustrations of Mr M.Ali (July 17). Had the Quaid lived a little longer, things may have been different including the game of cricket. No ifs and Butts.

    Thanks

  • Zahid on July 18, 2010, 4:32 GMT

    To all pakistanis show some courage and try as many new players as possible. That is the only way Pak cricket can survive. Don't look back it can't help. We had 13 continous defeats and don't forget even these defeats are with batsmen like Malik. Afridi, Younis and Yousuf so we talent who have the maturity and gutts to fight back. Please remove Malik and Akmal brothers they are the new shame of Pak cricket.

  • Saiful Ansari on July 18, 2010, 3:25 GMT

    Afridi did not consider himself suitable for Test Cricket. If persisted, he knew his game in the shorter formats would be affected. His decision to quit makes good sense. In his place Pakistan can play a regular batsmen or a bowler. Either in Afridi's presence or absence, Pakistan was not expected to win Tests on this tour. The young team will need time to build & evolve. Slowly they will come together to emerge as a competetive test side. Pakistan has good bowlers, but their batting is frail & unreliable. They should persevere with Azhar Ali & Umar Amin. Farhat can sit the next test and be replaced by Yasir Hameed. Shoaib Malik can come back in the side, in place of Afridi. Salman Butt is looking good as a player. He was rightly promoted to be the Captain. Headingly will be Salman's first test as the Skipper with Kamran as his deputy. Let us wish Salman & Kamran a better & improved result in the 2nd Test.

  • Jadogar Spin on July 17, 2010, 23:35 GMT

    Bring back M Yousuf - he may not be a great captain but he is the best batsman Pakistan has. Wake up Ejaz Butt!

  • Ch Allah Daad on July 17, 2010, 22:21 GMT

    We must stick to young players. Inclusion of Y. Khan and M. Yousaf might bring some strenght in batting line-up, but in the long run it will destroy confidence of young players. Khan and Yousaf should be kept in hiding like our secret weapons of mass destruction, never to be used, only purpose is to scare enemy.

  • AFAN on July 17, 2010, 20:46 GMT

    V NEED M.YOUSAF AND YOUNIS KHAN IN OUR TEST TEAM.AFRIDI TAKE GOOD DECESION.ABDUR RAZZAQ SHOULD ALSO BE INCLUDED IN 11 PLAYERS.I CONGRATULATE AFRIDI FOR HIS COURAGE.AND IN PAK NO ONE WANT TO LEAVE HIS SEATS WETHER HE IS LIGGIBLE R NOT BUT AFRIDI DO IT.

  • Arun on July 17, 2010, 19:40 GMT

    I like the way Afridi plays and it is a treat to watch him. He remind me of Kris Srikant. There is no dull moment when he is there. I am sure that he is a great motivator for the player at the other end. He is excellent in batting, bowling and fielding. He will be missed in test cricket. Had he stayed at the crease for longer time, I am sure he would have been one of the best test players in the world. Good luck to you, Afridi in the other forms of cricket.

  • shahzad rana on July 17, 2010, 19:39 GMT

    Salman Butt is right youngsters must be given chance, pakistan should not be looking in the past players.

  • Raviprasad Shetty on July 17, 2010, 19:29 GMT

    The big mistake PCB has done that leaving out experienced players like Younis and Yousuf. this is a Test match and not a T20 where expereince counts. The result would have been different if these 2 players were included.As looking at the comments made by the readers one thing is sure that there is an urgent reshuffle in PCB is required.

  • Arslaan on July 17, 2010, 19:25 GMT

    It is indeed a shame that Pakistan didn't get much closer to the required target before being bowled out. I felt very sorry for Salman Butt for not reaching what would have been a very well deserved ton.

    I think personally that these two new batsmen for Pakistan, the two A's, should stay. In their second innings especially they showed a lot of promise. As Salman said in a recent interview, you aren't born with experience. Give them time and I fully believe they will prove themselves to be two extremely talented batsman who will continue to deliver for Pakistan.

    It is sad that Afridi won't even be making an appearance at the Headingly Test, but thats the name of the game. Would be a good idea in my honest opinion to strengthen their batting line-up with Yasir Hameed to open alongside Butt in place of the useless Imran Farhat (though we all know it will never happen, and why it won't) and to then replace Afridis position with Malik. Not only a decent batsman, but can provide spin.

  • alfredo on July 17, 2010, 19:01 GMT

    we're going to miss boom boom - testmatchsofa.com made great play on it yesterday evening; you can't help but think that he's made a hasty decision - his test stats suggest that he can more than play the game. still, butt looks class and seems to have a sound and sober head on his shoulders. good luck salman.

  • Azhar Awan on July 17, 2010, 18:49 GMT

    I think time for MoYo and Younas is up. Try this new talent. Nothing is left in MoYo, he can't field and run between the wicket. Younas khan is too arrogant and plays for his ego not for country and they along with Malik are bound to create trouble for new young captain. It time to move on and I am sure If we give opportunity to new talent we will have new exciting batsman in our line up.

  • Jamshed on July 17, 2010, 17:18 GMT

    Afridi did good decision, but on wrong time. I think something is wrong in the team, could be something politics in the team..... Allaha Bless us and Pakistan Team.

  • Muhammad Usman on July 17, 2010, 17:17 GMT

    Good article buttomeiwould love to seehim playing next test as well because i feel he took decision in rush of blood.

    If we See his batting in Asia cup he was the best choice to play as a batsman and so he can play in coming matches in same manner. It was not only him who Didnt bat well but others as well so do we blive others should also retire.

    He should have given a little time to his decision to my opinion by looking at his performance in coming matches and to me there is something fishy again (dont know what)

  • hafeez on July 17, 2010, 16:48 GMT

    I have watched Pakistan play for the last few years. I feel that AKMAL iz best captain for Pakistan

  • DesiHungama on July 17, 2010, 16:45 GMT

    Hmm. Now you've got me thinking. A smart chap above mentioned Pak team should have "No Captain". And why not? They succeed only under draconian terms anyway as of Great Khan's. We don't have the likes of Khan anymore. Let coach administer. Azher! My faith in you was all true. It may sound too early to say but I know we have finally found Miandad/Inzi/YY's replacement in him. Given the right conditions, he is going to score many many runs. A genuine Test player. A great Test player is one who comes out to the game as if on a honeymoon with wicket his love and crease it's bed. Azher's got it. I am impressed.

  • zahid shah on July 17, 2010, 16:41 GMT

    Shahid afradi has many flaws as a batsman & as a Cricketer. Once someone asked captain Mohd Mushtaq about Shahid afradi & he said Shahid afradi has no- foot work at all. Few years ago english player Geoffrey Boycott came & he worked with Afradi, but the result came out zero.

    I blame on pakistan cricket board & Ijaz butt. Afradi should never be a captain. Board wanted Younis Khan to say sorry, even though younis khan did nothing but to serve Pakistan.

    One last point about sulman butt captainship. I don't see him a good opener neither as a captain. This is a another bad decsion of Ijaz butt & his company. I belive younis khan is a brave captain & he should lead pakistan for next 3 years till we find someone else.

  • Shahzad on July 17, 2010, 16:34 GMT

    This is probably good decision by Afridi. Afridi to be useful in test cricket batting, there should be a partner on the other end who keeps him calm but there is no senior partner left in the team. I am a Pakistani but happy on this loss in firt test match. This loss could be beneficail in the long run, the reason: a team does not deserve a vicitory whose two best batsmen are not selected only because they are not very good book of the board chairman and an openner batsman is consitently in the team, despite failure, beacuse his father in law is member of selection comittee. This guy is given preference over a much talented available batsman. That is why loss of this match is beneficial in the long run if some one (authority) is sincere to Pakistan cricket. unfortunately, the qualification of chairman board is just to be brother in law of one top politician of ruling party.

  • ibi on July 17, 2010, 16:04 GMT

    shoaib Malik is the best choice , inspite of dirty politic of e nerrow minded people he is still in the team , salman but is good batsment but he will not be successful captain Tanvir Ahmed should be in the team

  • Rashid on July 17, 2010, 15:47 GMT

    What is wrong with Pakistan? the cricket board is part of a joker club assigned by a joker.Afridi was my most favourite player , but the way he talked about Yousuf and Younus made me disappointed me.Any how if there were a reasonable board and coaching staff , they could have help to shape his career.Too bad, Test Cricket is loosing a great entertainer because of PCB. Butt you need to retire 95% fan doesn't like your face.

  • masterturner on July 17, 2010, 15:40 GMT

    Pakistan introduces quite young boys to test cricket. In Australia, England and South Africa players do not debut at ages of 16 or 17. Players like Umar Akmal having lot of natural talent, still need much more training and tempramnent for test cricket. T20 can be played and won by the natural talent but when it comes to technique and temprament, Pakistan is lacking a lot. In current situation the only option left is to call back Muhammad Yousaf and Younis Khan but none of them should be appointed as captain. Both of them are excellent players and they should concentrate on their batting.

  • salman munir on July 17, 2010, 15:33 GMT

    well the team should be the same for leeds test,wid malik making a comeback.

  • Faisal Sami Qadir on July 17, 2010, 15:33 GMT

    Hey Mike, just ignore what Narayan G said.. there are some dumbhead, cracked indians(not every indian) who always hate to accept anything good said about Pakistan. U as a nneutral, had sympathy and appreciation for afridi., but this guy, narayan, couldnt digest all this and targeted u to spill out his frustration.. cheers, expecting more good articles from u.

  • Ali on July 17, 2010, 15:27 GMT

    I agree with you asif

  • ALI on July 17, 2010, 15:25 GMT

    Thanks God Mr. Mirza US is not playing test cricket otherwise it would be US or JEWS conspiracy. Its just a game why we bring politics and religion always. I agree with your average statistics of these 2 YYs. What about the match fitness of yousuf and their previous record of creating disarray in dressing room. Were they not present in winter against Aus and other test matches which pak lost? Accept defeat, Aus is better team, and if you want to bring experience bring Imran, Miadad and Akram they would be more experienced than your YYs. If afradi can play after 4 years in test why not these legends? according to your theory My humble advise to you and all pakistanis that don't afraid of defeat and relay on new talent.

  • A. Ranjha on July 17, 2010, 15:05 GMT

    No country for ungrown men...

  • Asif on July 17, 2010, 14:57 GMT

    Why don't we accept defeat! I think Pakistan can not improve unless we as as nation accept defeat. If you want to bring experience in the side call Imran, Miadad and Wasim their record and experience is far ahead of these tows. When player like afradi can play test after 4 years why not these legends.

    Trust in young talent don't waste them for the sack of just one or tow victories. Did't we loose when they were present. Just be bold just like Australia. Cricket is not t20. If t20 is cricket we should not be bother of the results of test. I think those who love cricket understand me.

  • shekhar on July 17, 2010, 14:50 GMT

    To win or to loose is part of the game (any game, not only cricket). But to give up the fight, to surrender meekly is not acceptable. To loose against Aussies is nothing to feel disheartened. But the way Pakistani players played was really shameful. Now one guy who played well is being burdened with captaincy. Hope it doesn't kill his batting. How can captain of a team say on record that, "I did not want to play test cricket, but PCB wanted me to!" How hilarious! There will be hundreds of talented youngsters or the experienced ones cooling their heels on the sidelines, who will die to take up the job of playing for their country. Why to force someone to play against his will? This is the same Afridi, who previously announced retirement (this is 3rd time) from test cricket, so that he could play IPL. People's memory is so short lived! Now (after the defeat), he is giving excuses about his fitness (side strain). Then why did he play in the first place, if he was unfit? Happy retirement!!

  • sherry on July 17, 2010, 14:50 GMT

    salman butt is a new captain, how many times pcb will change captain

    next captain akmal, then who gul later aamer or may be ajmal wat the hell is wrong.

    i think pak should ban malik once again along with akmal brothers.

    kamran akmal has done 25 - 30 quick runs max in T20 if thats the ratio why cant we try Imran nazir again, i also believe that sarfraz ahmad is a great keeper and he should get chance. you can bring some new talent instead of umer akmal class and form in meaningless if you are involve in politics and loosing matches purposely.

    This team wont learn and no future for pakistan cricket team until ijaz butt and zardari resigns.

  • PCB TRUTH on July 17, 2010, 14:39 GMT

    All the problem comes when PCB takes money to play perchi player and the captain has to keep his mouth shut and let the parchi player play whole series after series even he is not performing. That make captain make egitated at the end that what happen to yousuf when parchi player like fasil iqbal,shoaib malik, kaneria has to be part no matter what happens. but media pressure atlast make captains quit!!

  • Himayun Mirza on July 17, 2010, 14:27 GMT

    This must be Zardari's fault. It is conspiracy against Pakistan and Supreme Court which has nothing better to do must take action against the corrupt politicians. The generals should be brought back! The fairness and honesty would be restored once again.

    Let us wake up and smell the coffee. These bunch of mediocre players are all what Pakistan has. Batsmen of the caliber of Yousuf and Younus are only born once in several years. These two were the only Pakistanis with an average of 50 plus. All the rest including Butt has an average in 30's. You cannot turn donkeys into race horse. If you take the test averages of top 5 Indian or Aus. batsmen, and compare them to the top Pakistanis, you would get the answer. The numbers and records do not lie. Let us stop the BS and look at the simple math. On the current records none of these Pakistani batsmen would be selected in any other test team in the world.

    Himayun Mirza, USA

  • cricketfan on July 17, 2010, 14:26 GMT

    replace wid current Italian Ministry I will bet my life savers they will outlast pak crkt team in the field,following da ball tasting gala, he should hv been banned for life, but wh cn argue wth a dysfunctional crcktr cum administrator like Mr.Butt? He shld nevr hav appointed,against his wishes though,Afridi as captain,will Butt's appointment make the click, again don't bet yr last penny folks.The problem lies in the system,overhauling of it is long over due. And to the "gentleman" (I hop u r one!), who objected to Jay's and Rahul's comments Please note: this is an open forum and not for any particular citizenry so yr reuqest is in bad taste.Grow up guys! taste the fruits of regional/international cooperation!!! warm regards and al da best!

  • IKY on July 17, 2010, 14:23 GMT

    Also, my team would be

    Butt - Purely as a batsmen

    Malik - opener, if he dosnt like it, say bye and bring in Alam

    Younis - hasnt got long left but can lead the team , proven batsemn

    Amin - stick with him for a six months - gain exprience

    Yousuf - batsmen - the guys quality, leave him alone and let him score doube hundreds!!!

    U.Akmal - batting with yousif and younim should gain TEST mentality

    K.Akmal - hate him but who else? sarfraz? haha

    Aamer - he can bat a lil, if he gets 10-20 il be happy - strike bowler

    Gul - love this guy, looks a bit weird, awesome bowler, funny with the bat, few flukey six's

    Asif - cleverest bowler, like mcgrath, shame he's a crackhead, sham he wasted two years of his life, he cudda bin number one bowler right now.

    Ajmal/kaneria - dont mind, they both have quality

    Stick with these guys, re-build the team, have unity, play for PAKISTAN!!!!

  • akbar on July 17, 2010, 14:20 GMT

    Just a day before he claimed to have the support & respect of the teammates. What went wrong in 24 hrs. It cann,t be the defeat at the hands of AUS. We are used to it. But it is not good for our cricket at all. He proved to be an other YK. Afridi should have waited till the end of the series. What was so urgent to leave the series in the middle ? It must be interferrence from PCB. Otherwise he captained the team very well. We have some conspirators & underminers in the team as well. May be they are the reason for his shocking decision. Whatever the reason ,we are back to square 1 & an execellent opportunity for AUS to cash on. It is a bad omen for ENG because AUS will come in the much needed groove to take away the ashes,after beating Pak easily.

  • IKY on July 17, 2010, 14:14 GMT

    Regarding Afridi - He was always going to fail at test standards we all knew it. However, just by being in the team, he lifted the boys spirits and they did try,( kinda). That is not good enough in it self and I feel it is good that he is gone.

    Pakistan need to slowly bring in new, YOUNG players, guided by proven OLD test players. ( Yousuf, Younis).

    For example, umar amin should bat in a team with yousuf and younis in it, and should bat in the middle of the two. Therefore gaining valuable experience.

    Slowly we can build an influx of young players who can TAKE OVER from the older players.

    The bowling is fine, however i would give Aamer a break as we dont need him bolwing too much and shoortening his career thorugh injuries.

    How disapointing though, if pakistan had just hit singles and protected their wickets after Butt was dismissed, they wudda actually won! ( Thats what austrailia would do)

    Shame, but hey, thats pakistan!

  • Agha Raza on July 17, 2010, 14:11 GMT

    The basic mistake Afridi made was when he stopped opening the inning. I am sure he is a class player and should open the inning in all formats of the game including tests. When he comes in the middle order he is laways under pressure. He should follow the footprints of Sehwag and just play like him. Look at Sehwag even after several failures he never stopped opening. Agha Raza.

  • sarwar fahim on July 17, 2010, 14:07 GMT

    i feel shahid afridi has made a correct decesion. his style of cricket is definitely not suited for test match.i would suggest that abdur razzaq should replace him for next test match.afridi should not have been made test captain at first place.the best man to lead pakistan in test is younis khan.i sipmply dont understand how PCB works.they are making fun of themselves and at the same time ruining pakistan cricket.

  • RAFI KHAN on July 17, 2010, 14:06 GMT

    Salam o alikum Everybody I am unable to understand the policy of corrupt PCB. What the hell the management means who dont know that you cant force young guys of 18 or 20 directly into test matches before giving them exposure in T20 or ODI.What was Razzaq, Malik and Yasser hameed doing in the dressing room. Let me make a perfect test x1

    1 Salman Butt 2 Asim kamal 3 Younus khan 4 Mohd Yusuf 5 Umar Akmal 6 Abdur RAZZAQ 7. k Akmal 8 Shoib Akhtar 9 Mohd Amir 10 Mohd Asif/ U Gull 11 SAEED Ajmal 12th Man mishbah ul Haq/ Faisal Iqbal Coach Javed Miadad

    Friends plz comment at rafialig@gmail.com

  • Hemant Gandhi on July 17, 2010, 14:01 GMT

    retired....un-retired....banned.....un-banned....dropped....recalled.....fined....un-fined......

    who says Pak cricket is not vibrant?????

    Will Inzi be recalled? Or may be two Ws should seriously consider the option....

  • qasim on July 17, 2010, 14:01 GMT

    The stupid PCB chief just wont allow pak cricket to settle

  • Usman - Toronto on July 17, 2010, 13:56 GMT

    You know our biggest problem is temparament. I still think Afridi was the best choice and we were going in right direction. Considering the fact he was back in team after 4 years and you are playing against Australlia under conditions suitable for balling. It was all Umer Akmal who should have come out of his T20 minded way and proove himself to be a test batsman. If you think about it we were really relying on him. 250 target in a day and a half was not a big deal. I personally think Afridi should take this as a challenge for he has the complete ability to do that. Team's seniors officials should sit with him to give him confidence. They should not make any drastic changes, they should continue with the same format, just try to boost Afridi's confidence and try to shape Umer Akmal into a test Batsman. Afridi is only one who is keeping the team united. I am sure he will learn from his mistakes so I think he should continue to be a captain.

  • Habib Afridi on July 17, 2010, 13:55 GMT

    I m very emotional on Afridi's retirement bcoz i love Afridi in any form of Cricket. From the time he has been made captain a new Pakistan team arose with a great zeal and passion.They fought every game till the end except at lord's. I think it was not a right time for Afridi to retire but he must play all the tests in england and at the last should have checked his performance.Now leaving Pakistan team in such conditions is not right bcoz i always think that Afridi will be one of the best captains.

  • mo on July 17, 2010, 13:23 GMT

    The idea of bringing back younis and yousuf should be a no go,as younis is already playing for surrey and there is little to suggest pakistan batting problems would be sorted,further these players did little to enhance pakistan concerns during aussie tour.Secondly like Afridi they become have beens.in fact instead of two debutants and a dysfunctinal Afridi it should have been 3 with mohammed irfan included instead of afridi and butt capt

  • imran m on July 17, 2010, 13:22 GMT

    I can't believe some of the fans writing in are asking for Abdul Razzaq,Misbah and Malik to be in the team or even captain. If you follow Test cricket carefully and over the years these three have been total failures.Razzaq only had one good innings but that was on a dead pitch.If you open your eyes you'll see that he has no defensive technique and can't play good fast bowlers or last a few deliveries against spin.Malik is a coward and doesn't have the ability with bat and ball in Test cricket either. Imran Farhat is a corrupt joker with no talent. I'm Punjabi but why are we picking idiots based on nepotism.Fawad Alam has more talent than any of the above and so does Yasir Hameed and Taufiq Umar, but they don't get a long enough run in the side to establish some form.The other jokers score 50 once a year to safeguard their position.PCB is all at fault, it needs to be run professionally and be accountable to public. We need an independent cricket board and pick players on merit.

  • Mudassar Rana on July 17, 2010, 13:17 GMT

    dear mike your assessment of afridi is a correct one. He is someone who brightens up a match otherwise who would bother watching test crickt. I think his retirement is premature because he did most things well in the match and the bowlers bowled beuatifully. Its a real shame that on the first morning aamer only got only one wicket instead of the 3 he should have had. Had this been the case the match would have been a lot closer. Secondly the undue pressure brought about chris broad's usual anti-pakistani activities was uncalled for. I am sorry winning should be with honour not the way ponting wants it. Ponting is a big cry baby things dont go his way he chucks the dummy out. I fail to see how any just person could not reprimand ponting for his elbow, yet aamer gets reprimanded for getting out of his way!!!!

  • Azhar on July 17, 2010, 13:15 GMT

    Get rid of Ijaz Butt.Bring back Yousuf and Younis.Younis to captain in all formats

  • Asif Iqbal on July 17, 2010, 13:13 GMT

    Shahid Afridi has once again made Pakistan cricket a laughing stock (after the ball biting incident) and on top of it, the Board is suuporing his decision. I think the whole team should be scrapped and replaced fully with Under 19 team. Shahid Afridi should be banned for life. Now Yousuf is returning and then Younis will also return. What a comedy?

  • KM on July 17, 2010, 13:02 GMT

    Mr Ijaz Butt has done it again.Because of him, Afridi has given up test cricket. He pushed Afridi into playing test cricket and as a captain when he had retired already. Afridi's heart was not in this format of the game. I feel sorry for Salman Butt. He is the captain of a team which cannot beat Australia or England at all. After these 5 test what is Ijaz Butt going to do? Ban Salman Butt also for loing 5 test matches. One must not expect miracles from a captain when proper tools (players) are not provided. Present pakistani team is in no way a match to Aus/Eng. I still hope, the youngsters in the team with play competitive cricket in the remaining matches.

  • aa on July 17, 2010, 12:42 GMT

    Narayan G @ Afridi has destroyed India on many occasions and so you think he should do something else . I can understand your pain

  • pier wasif on July 17, 2010, 12:31 GMT

    we are naive to think that Afridi is to be blamed for the defeat, PCB has to change the way they are operating, Mr. Butt has been a complete failure in managing cricket affairs he is playing with the future of Pakistani Cricket, he has crossed all boundries & limits he should not be allowed to play with our cricket affairs, i think that ICC should intervene take over as adviser and monitor crickets affairs in Pakistan as soon as possible, there is no one in the PCB who understand the feeling of the Pakistani cricket fans or they do not care they are running the affairs just like they are running the country similarity is very much alike look at Mr. Ijaz Butt & look at Mr.Zardari a very fine Pair of genious.

  • dar268 on July 17, 2010, 12:31 GMT

    I think an apology to Henry Blofeld and the TMS team is in order - Afridi is an embarassment to himself and to cricket (though not to the junk version that is T20)

  • zuber on July 17, 2010, 12:23 GMT

    count Stats..... 1. salman Butt 2. kamraan Akmal 3. Umar Akmal 4. Gul Umar 5. Aamer 6. Asif 7. Kaneria 8. Afridi Individually they are mountains of talent and have the all the potentials of a match winners..... but as a team they are loosing the matches they almost won.... i cant figure it out... WHY? it seems they put their personal problems in front in mind....

  • Abid on July 17, 2010, 12:22 GMT

    PLEASE For GOD sake get Afridi back to game, he is true player who create the passion for win in the team......i wish if i could stop him to not retire frm Test..........

  • ishtiaque on July 17, 2010, 12:18 GMT

    Shoib Malik is still finding supports as comments in this blog have revealed. For me S.Malik is a lethal disease to the team. He reminds me of corrupt politicians in under-developed nations who are always voted to assembly with their disgraceful moralities. How come an average player like him retained place and still enjoyed supports when he did all these dirty politics in the team? Can anybody address it?

  • Deepak Kumar Nayak on July 17, 2010, 12:16 GMT

    I am cricket fan of pakistan, I think pakistan team going on a wrong direction.

    Akhtar may lead for captain, umar akmal should be his deputy.

  • ishtiaque on July 17, 2010, 12:08 GMT

    Afridi's irresponsible and reckless attitude towards batting should be punished at the very early stage of his career. Rather he retained his place in the team for a long time. Even in ODI he often failed to grasp the situation and thus throwing his wicket away. Off-late he had been a far better bowler in ODI and T20 modes than a batter. Recent batting successes don't prove anything. Never Afridi performed well for a long period. His adventurous approach is often lauded by critics which I think did more harm to PAK cricket and Afridi. His higher strike rate doesn't tell the fact that his average length of stay is pretty short in terms of delivery faced. A 12 of 4 balls or a 6 of 2 balls or 17 of 8 balls did not help the cause of the team for sure but helped Afridi to maintain a very high strike rate. Had Afridi given the message like Slater and Damien Martin received from the selectors, he would have been a great player.

  • Sham on July 17, 2010, 12:06 GMT

    Editor jay and rahul's comments above are totally provoctive and irrelevant.Remove them immediately please.

  • sardar naveed on July 17, 2010, 11:59 GMT

    love u afridi

  • hassam on July 17, 2010, 11:58 GMT

    your comments about shahid afridi is totally based on biased attitude. you don't have any sense of rating a batsman. afridi's batting technique in ODI and test is not up to the standard of these two formats. he is also not a one day player because his average is only 23 in batting which is enough to rate him the most unsuccessful batsman. i never see such a inconsistent and non serious player with his duties in my life. it will be better for you to stop favoring and supporting afridi otherwise you will become a joke in other's eye because afridi has nothing extra ordinary under his belt

  • nswati on July 17, 2010, 11:55 GMT

    Very True, Afrdi is a fun to watch. He should play the way he play and that is only possible in ODI and T20 cricket. Test is not suited to Afridi. PCB and MR Pain in the BUTT(Ejaz Butt) should resign now and Yousuf and Younis must be back in the Squad and most idealy the later as a Captain. Get rid of Imran farhat and Shoab Malik(The major cause of the situation we are in now).

  • Imran on July 17, 2010, 11:46 GMT

    Pakistan need Younis khan to be captained for Tests...

  • Banaris on July 17, 2010, 11:45 GMT

    I have watched Pakistan play for the last few years. The one thing I have noticed is the same people from running PCB to the players make the same mistakes over and over again yet they are still in the team. Can anybody do anything about it, I guess not. So let the circus continue and be a laughing stock of the cricket world. I feel ashamed to be a Pakistani fan.

  • Andy on July 17, 2010, 11:42 GMT

    WHAT AFRIDI'S BATTING REALLY -Having watched both of 'Boom Boom's' recent innings v Aus, while we could have given him the benefit of the doubt for the first one (31 off 15 balls) the second one was indefensible! Holing out off the fourth ball, Undoing the battling work that the other batsmen had done. Are you telling me that the man couldn't have defended for at least an over or two more before adopting his natural game! For me this was 'two fingers up' to test cricket by Afridi, 'I don't want to be here, I don't like this long form of the game, look I can only play 20/20 now and that's all I wanna do give me the money for it'..At the end of the day yet another person who could put bums on seats in the test arena has selfishly stopped. Yeah Shahid go back and play 'Boom Boom' cricket, at thirty years old you could have led your country back to great things for the next five years or so, instead you've chosen the easy route!!!

  • Peekay on July 17, 2010, 11:38 GMT

    It's a nice article by Mike Holmans on Afridi. Feel sad to see Pakistan loosing this test match without giving any fight by any middle order batsmen including Afridi. The keenness shown by Afridi while playing T20 or one day matches were missing in his captaincy while playing test matches. It's too late to comment on Afridi's place in test match as he has announced retirement. I wish if my comments could reach PCB or Afridi, as a last chance I suggest that he should be allowed to open the test match with Salman Butt. I bet there will be a big difference in his approach instead of swinging his bat on anything. He is not a dumb character as made out by some writers here, otherwise he would not have won 2 T/20 matches against Australia. Honestly, I feel Afridi should be pursued to captain Pakistan in all formats of games. Hope PCB can change his mind!!!

  • Muhammad iqbal on July 17, 2010, 11:19 GMT

    Pakistan cricket team is still a best team in a world.They do not need to introduced two debuts in first match.They have lost 13 matches against austrailia continuously only due to their wrong selection.I think the only reason is wrong selection of team.Yasir Hameed is well deserved opener ,instead of imran farhat, for team in test matches as well as in ODI matches.Ofcourse, without younis khan and Muhammad yousaf, our test team is not complete.our bowling department is good.They always done their jobs in field.No need to change bowling line up.Now i would like to introduce my pakistan test team, 1.sulman butt 2.yasir hameed 3.younis khan 4.muhammad yousaf 5.umar akmal 6.kamran akmal 7.muhammad amir 8.umar gul 9.dinesh kaneria 10.Muhammad asif 11.saeed ajmal My odi team 1.sulman butt 2.yasir hameed 3.younis khan 4.umar akmal 5.kamran akmal 6.Shahid afridi 7.abdur razzak 8.muhammad amir 9.umar gul 10.saeed ajmal 11.Shoaib akhter

    10.

  • sajjad on July 17, 2010, 11:18 GMT

    Change Openers Imran Farhat is not a test batsman Asim Kamal is the best option for open innings

  • Arshad on July 17, 2010, 11:14 GMT

    For those of you wandering why Shahid Afridi can not change his approach to test cricket, I would remind you a of a well known fable about a scorpion and a frog. To cut a log story short, a scorpion is given a lift accross a river by a frog. But while they are in the middle of the river the scorpion stings the frog. The frog asks why did you sting me when you know we are both going to die. The scorpion replies I couldn't help it, it's in my nature. Shahid Afridi has been playing international cricket for about 12 years, if he could change, he would have done it by now.

  • Owais on July 17, 2010, 11:12 GMT

    Great Piece Mike. I also have kind of mixed feelings but I would be lying if I said that I had no hope in him. When he was walking out yesterday, I knew its this way or that way, he was simply not going to block and grind it out. I wish him all the best in ODI and T20's and hope his emotions dont let him do anything stupid in his strong area (limited overs cricket).

    I thnink now Butt is the only viable option, I know his fielding sucks and his recent form might be temporary but suffice to say, Pakistan has recently played against Aussies and he is now averaging around 50 against them. This shows at least batting wise he has improved a lot. Finally we need to bring Yousuf and Younis back in the team.

  • Anonymous on July 17, 2010, 11:04 GMT

    i think the team should look like this 1) salman butt (captain) 2) Yasir hameed 3)M.Yousaf 4)Younis Khan 5) Misbah Ul haq 6) Umer Akmal 7)Kamran Akmal 8)M.ASif 9)Amir 10)umer Gul 11) Kaneria

    oh i forgot .. imran Farhat,if you want to come back into the team please contact your uncle iliyaas :@ :@ :@

  • Dawud on July 17, 2010, 11:02 GMT

    Rahul - stick to cricket views please and not politics - you clearly haven't got the capacity for anything else.

  • Dawud on July 17, 2010, 11:00 GMT

    WE WANT YOUNIS, WE WANT YOUNIS!!!

  • Nasr Alam on July 17, 2010, 11:00 GMT

    I think the best choice for new captain is Kamran Akmal. He is the only player who is a must for all types of cricket. He is the only wicketkeeper in Pakistan who can bat. Salman Butt is a good batsman but making him captain will destroy his career and will spark new political issues within Pakistan team. Kamran seemed to have good relationship with all Pakistan players. Yousuf and Misbah should be back but not Younis Khan as his cricket is over. If he cannot bat in Pakistan Domestic or county cricket then how will he bat in test cricket. Azhar Ali/Umar Amin are better choices then Younis.

  • F on July 17, 2010, 10:58 GMT

    Afrdi is a wuss ,just like younis and yousaf .

  • Amjad on July 17, 2010, 10:58 GMT

    and this proves us that we,humans, are divided and we cannot be one no matter what. look at this simple fact. Shahid Afridi retired from Test Cricket and clearly mentioned "i m not fit neither physicaly nor mentaly to play test cricket becuase its very tough out there and my temprament is not of a test cricketer." he also stated that he was out of test cricket for four years and the days he wanted to play he was kept out and he came back into test cricket without having played nothing of test cricket (comparetivly) even in domestic.and he is so right by claiming that he was having the temperament of an ODI/T20 batsman. the most important thing that he mentioned: " i feel guilty to have blocked a place of a (youngster) specialized batsman/bowler just because i had to be part of the team because of my captancy. and now i want to take of this burden from the team's shoulder". what else do u need a man to say? how much more clearer can a man be? how much honesty can there be? he's a LEGEND

  • jay on July 17, 2010, 10:55 GMT

    pakistan is headed for doom,their players embarass the country on field and their politicians off the field.any sensible pakistani anywhere around the world ,wake up and sense the situation.Ur dirty politics is killing ur cricket and making your lot look like jokers in front of the world.

    Yousuf in and then out,younis in and out , afridi in and out and the answer to all problems is always " BRING IMRAN BACK". Think with a brain and put some educated people to run the board.

  • PK Fan on July 17, 2010, 10:52 GMT

    Both innings saw Pakistani batsmen mucking up against backup bowlers. I think we should invite every country that looks to improve form or break records.....

  • Anonymous on July 17, 2010, 10:41 GMT

    Hi seems like article is wtitten by our president overlooking all the embarresment and knee jerk action taken by our board.We have become a laughing stock in the world.i have no idea what mr ijaz butt will do to wake our chief patrieon up.I dont like critising our president whoever it might be but in this case i can tell you he has not better interest of pakistan as this pcb has let the country down and made us look fool in the world what the hell they were thinking when they made afridi a test captain only they can answer.Shoaib akhter,Shoaib malik&afridi were pardoned i don't know about akmals brothers faith but i ask this board what younis and yousaf has done to deserve this treatment.I follow pakistan cricket a lot living abroad I have seen and read all that embaressment brought by players like afridi .akhter,malik and akmal bros so what is the crime of younis & yousaf can anyone answer please...people who thought afridi can captain a test team needs brain surgery.

  • Anonymous on July 17, 2010, 10:41 GMT

    What kind of Chief the PCB have ,one day he says Yousaf is now way concidered as he himself submitted he retiment and the next day he calls him and offer him to play, is he really the kind of a man as one ICC official described him or he is so stupid can some one differenciate out of these two thing out of his personality( if he has any)

  • Bob on July 17, 2010, 10:40 GMT

    What? Don't the red balls taste good enoungh?

  • AHA on July 17, 2010, 10:40 GMT

    A single province player promotion is the reason for the current disasterous situation of Pakistan Cricket. PCB should made an honest committee to look after the matters of Pakistan Cricket, before its too late

  • rizwan on July 17, 2010, 10:33 GMT

    it was really shocking news when afridi announced his retirement immediately after lost first test against Australia, it is not afridi and PCB mistak actually there was no choice for PCB after younus khan, afridi is good captain and he can manage his performance in test cricket as he is doing well in other formats but he need good coach like Miandad, any how PCB should comes up and pressurize him to get back his decision and also send yousaf and younus for england series and in coming match should give chance to Yasir Hameed as now he is only one who can play long inning.

    regards Rizwan

  • naseer on July 17, 2010, 10:33 GMT

    I think it was afridi's mistake. any sane and determined person looks at the situation and then bats....but i guess its a different story for afridi..anyway i also dont think that the captaincy should be given to salman butt cuz he batting beautifully at the moment and history shows that captaincy deteriorates a players performance(the case of sachin tendulkar) due to the pressure and rift wid other players(possibly kamran akmal)so i think the captaincy should be given to someone very senior like younis khan to avoid fresh confrontation in the team

  • Venkat on July 17, 2010, 10:29 GMT

    Lost in all this frenzy is the superb bowling by the Pakistani side. Is there a better bowling attack in the world? I bet you, if the Pakistani batsmen had to face their own bowlers, they would be all out for less than 100!! I hope that the next captain nurtures the talents of Umar Akmal who has the potential to be an international batting sensation.

  • Zahid Sheikh on July 17, 2010, 10:26 GMT

    Is it only Afridi who don't hv test temprament? how abt Farhat, Umar Akmal and Kamran Akmal. All of them cannot shift there mind from 20/20 to the test format. Oh don't forget what a hell the Coach is doing, he should give them a strong lecture describing the difference between two types of cricket. At the end, i will say that Umar Amin and Azhar Ali should be given one more chance.

  • RM on July 17, 2010, 10:22 GMT

    Afridi uses Head & Shoulders. Head only when bowling and only shoulders when batting. No dandruff and no runs. Shame on Afridi a fighter retreating like this. This is not how heros should leave the arena.

  • Tashfeen Qayyum on July 17, 2010, 10:21 GMT

    I disgaree with most people in these postings. I still feel that Afridi has a good future as a Captain. he does not have to be Clive Lloyd or Imran Khan, he can be Brearley. The way he captained the side was impressive, good use of bowlers, good field placings and he overall created enough pressure on the Australians, had them on the mat most of the time. I am not condoning his 2 innings but where 10 men could not do much what can be expected from one man even if he is a Captain. There seems to be something else behind the scenes in this retirement thing. As far his shots, what do you expect him to do while facing Marcus North? defensive forward plods or attack him out of the bowling line up. he did right, Hussey just held a fantastic catch.

  • hamid on July 17, 2010, 10:19 GMT

    I agree ith Liaqat , in the end afridi cant be put in the list of wasim or imran or waqar after their retire from the cricket. cuz they had captianed in all formarts with great command and control. When u retired it depends who is in hall of frame

  • Azhar on July 17, 2010, 10:10 GMT

    Afridi is not the only player,who played bad stroke.Akmal brothers,Butt also played poor strokes.I think Pakistan should not play test cricket for next two years. How can we get rid of Imran Farhat? Why is he in the team? This betting line up can not score more than 300 runs.Butt will be the sixth captain in last two years.

  • MNR on July 17, 2010, 10:09 GMT

    I dont know why people still talk abour yousuf & Younis. yousuf was a very negatve player, if u noted in NZL & AUS series he was not ltting Umar akml play his game, instead of telling play this n that and concerntrating on own batting. and pakistanis as a nation have many egostic problem, they solve that they solve many things. S. Malik was a good captain but since he is young elders had problem, just compare the other captains, Smith 22?, Ponting 25?, Gayl 24?, Felming 22? . but pakistan???? attitude problem.

  • Adeel Akhter on July 17, 2010, 10:06 GMT

    Mr. Mike Holmans really its like a heart touch, you make me sad man..

    Thank you, Adeel

  • Adeel Akhter on July 17, 2010, 10:04 GMT

    I am really sad to hear that Shahid Afridi to retire from Tests I what him to comeback, and on this kind of situation Pakistan really need there experience player Mohammad Yousuf and Younius Khan and why they keep Yaser Hamied only in the dressing room this guy he have all that ability to do some thing they can see his career what he done,

    COME BACK AFRIDI COME BACK TEAM NEED YOU……

    My Best, Adeel Akhter Dubai U.A.E

  • Shahid on July 17, 2010, 9:57 GMT

    It will be a mistake to call Yousef and younis to replace the debutents. Both the boys played good cricket and should be given more chances. Yousef and Younis have never done wonders against Australians and they won't be doing better than these two. Pakistan should not be afraid of losing and should go on building a team for the future. They should have taken Naved Yasin and Mohammad Irfan to England too. For the next test, Yaser Hamid should come in for Imran Farhat and Younis could come in for Afridi. Ijaz Butt should now give up his shamefull acts and select in practice Younis and not an aged and out of practice Yousef. His personal likings and dislikings are too expensive for Pakistan cricket. On question of captaincy, don't even consider naming Kamran Akmal as a possibility while him not being a sure keeper. I can even guess, him and Shoaib having a hand in Afridis retirement.

  • Ahmed on July 17, 2010, 9:56 GMT

    sorry to say Afridi wanted to becaome captain in any way but he did not realize how diffcult and resposible job is this, only T20 and oneday format of cricket he can play, yousuf and younus are the best batmen for test but not best skipper belive or not Shoaib Malik still is the best choice for Test captaincy

  • azhar on July 17, 2010, 9:55 GMT

    pakistan team for the next test match.

    yasir hameed, Salman Butt, Azhar Ali, Umar Amin, Umar Akman, Fawad Alam, Kamran Akmal, Mohammed Amir, Umar Gul, Mohammed Asif, Danesh Kaneria

    Captain. Salman Butt

  • Jackie L on July 17, 2010, 9:54 GMT

    Mike, you omitted my comment in your praise of Afridi because it was critical of your opinion. I was one of the few that saw the danger in your approach. However I think that events have proved me right. I do not suppose you will print this either.

    You are entitled to your opinion. What is not acceptable is your entirely gratuitous remark about Ian Bell in your conclusion. There is an appreciable bias against Bell led by your editor Andrew Miller. But your job is not to please your editor but to show integrity when dealing with players and you are really answerable to your readers.

    If Akmal had his Ian Bell moment then he would still be there. If you are referring to Sabina Park I would like to nail this smear. I was there. The scoreboard read 0 4 1 9 1 0 0 6 24(Flintoff) 0. It was a team collapse on a difficult wicket. KP came in after lunch and was out third ball. Cook got a duck. By contrast Strauss took 50 balls to get 9, Bell 22 balls for 4. At least they struggled.

  • abdul moiz on July 17, 2010, 9:49 GMT

    If shoaib malik is there in england then definitely he should be given a chance to bring in some experience in the middle order whether he's in form or not....putting younsters in front of the aussies is just not on and surely these paki batsmen need to change their technique for tests..someone must drill test batting skills into their thick skulls.

  • Asghar on July 17, 2010, 9:49 GMT

    Good riddance - Afridi. Please do'nt ever come back to test cricket. Pakistan has wasted 15 years idolizing an irresponsible, selfish buffon who simply refuses to learn! Please retire and take your sugar daddy Ejaz Butt with you.

    Also all you Afridi apologists out there - please graciously accept that Afridi is a ball biting, pitch spinning cheat with the maturity of a four year old. Please hang your heads in shame!

  • Mohammad Usman on July 17, 2010, 9:46 GMT

    Nice article, Afridi I feel should not be picked in test cricket my reasons are:

    1. Primarily in ODI and T20 he is a bowler, as we have seen in test cricket his bowling is not penetrative. He can only do a one off performance like North in this test, Clarke against India and once Afridi took a five for I believe against India.

    2. His batting in the limited overs format is carefree and pressure free, as bowling is his main suit, this is not the case in Test cricket at all.

    3. He has not performed in test cricket for a long time, therefore he will not have the respect of the players in Test matches.

    I feel the head of the PCB should be sacked and the replacement should be Someone from the UK, so that he does not have political baggage; he should be an administrator rather than a cricketer. I feel Imran Khan should be the selector on a part time basis as he is busy in politics.

    Yeh and my final and one I would like to emphasize, Don't disrespect Pakistan with your comments.

  • nelson on July 17, 2010, 9:26 GMT

    I suggest bring back Yousef Yohanan and make Abdul razzak captain for test cricket.

  • Murtaza Bharmal on July 17, 2010, 9:16 GMT

    Well its once again deeply frustrating for the fans of Pakistan Cricket. The loss to Aussies again shows that how this talented team gets the mental block when playing again Australia. Yes you heard me right, it is a mental block that gets to Pakistani players when playing again Australia specially when they are batting. Having bowled out Australia to 253 in first innings and then losing the test match just adds the misery for the fans. Test cricket is all about temperament and that's what Pakistan team lacks. To add the salt on wounds resignation of Shahid Afridi as a Skipper of test team and his retierment from test cricket gives one more headache to PCB to appoint a new skipper. Lets hope that Pakistan gets a new skipper in a form of Imran Khan or Wasim who can get this team up and running again in all formats of the game.

  • Mayur Baruah on July 17, 2010, 9:05 GMT

    Oh ya exactly so Mr. Mike Holmans. It was good reading your article. I too is a big fan of Test Cricket and a you said finally about neutral venues being attracting more gruelling Test Cricket, then I am up for it too. T20's dont attract the same glimmer as does Test Cricket. Pakistan vs Australia has also had an aura of its own to attract & distract people & distractors alike. So it was interesting to watch Test Cricket.

  • liaqat on July 17, 2010, 8:59 GMT

    im sorry to say but afridi's attitude sucked.Your a player who is being asked to play test cricket by your authorities, How many would have killed to have that oppertunity. He showed to me a lack of caractor that has taken over the pakistan cricket team. Butt was the only one to show courage and brains. All is well i believe as nothing is lost with out afridi. only thing will be missing from Pakistan team will be stupidity. I know with out him pak have not done anything better but fans want to see is fight and determnation,Thats all,

  • Sany on July 17, 2010, 8:53 GMT

    Wow

  • touqeer on July 17, 2010, 8:49 GMT

    If afriid played a poor stroke in the second inngs, look what akmal brothers did, my God they need to learn what test cricket is all about, there is a hell of a difference between one day and test cricket but unfortuntely we are uable to understand it we lack brain

  • Agaddani on July 17, 2010, 8:42 GMT

    there were golden days when pakistan was having players who deserve to represent the country but now days everyone can be the team member of Pakistan and for that you need to say YES SIR to the chairman only. if the chairman is going to select the team, he is going to announce the team in ground, then why there are selectors and other members over there. I am sorry to say but it is not afridi and it is not any other who we give the responsibility. Younus can not play becuase the chairman has personal problems with him and his best friend YAWAR SAEED, better we stop to watch cricket.

  • Fahd Hashim on July 17, 2010, 8:35 GMT

    Test cricket - Seperating men from boys since 1800s

  • Aftab khan on July 17, 2010, 8:32 GMT

    Sorry to say but reality is that if we keep player like yousaf out of team then boy can not do that now cricket is serious bussiness i was plnning to see match today in lord but never happen i miss my job today because PCB is playing with our emotion i really broken my heart please e mail my e mail to mr yousaf and respected mr ejaz but please donot do personal keep cuntry on front thanks

  • IQBAL HAKIM on July 17, 2010, 8:30 GMT

    Afridi always bats in a haste, although I am a great fan of his, since his arrival in the cricketing world. Even he bowls in a haste finishing his over quickly. His decision to retire again is also in a haste.

  • IQBAL HAKIM on July 17, 2010, 8:29 GMT

    Afridi always bats in a haste, although I am a great fan of his, since his arrival in the cricketing world. Even he bowls in a haste finishing his over quickly. His decision to retire again is also in a haste.

  • Fayed on July 17, 2010, 8:26 GMT

    The only saving grace for Pakistan will be when things are fixed at the top. Our Chairman Ijaz Butthead, is taking Pakistan cricket to the cleaners. The test side should have Younis,Yousuf and Misbah. These are you Laxman, Dravid and Tendulkars. Inject new comers between them so they can learn test cricket.

    Making Salman Butt the skipper will further destroy us in Test cricket as the ONE guy who looks like he can score will come under the pressure of new being captain and lose his form and his place in the side when your facing world class sides like Aus/Eng.

    Pakistan should be a side with NO captains, YES, that right NO captain for now and why not where does it say that you need to have one captain. Test cricket is a very slow paced game and instructions can be called from the dressing room.

    All charge he should be given to Waqar and name a captain for the sake of naming him but let Waq's groom a skipper without putting pressure on him . Desperate times calls for desperate plan

  • Dawud on July 17, 2010, 8:25 GMT

    Only one way to salvage anything from the current debacle - kick Malik out of the squad and bring back Younis Khan as captain. He is the only guy (apart from Butt) who has any common sense in the Pakistan squad.

  • H L Cadambi (Cad) on July 17, 2010, 8:23 GMT

    Mike, Interesting posts, both of yours,on Afridi. Iam nowhere near as much a fan of Afridi as you (not because Iam Indian, I assure you!), but I do admire his batting style as well as his general larger-than-life approach on the field. BUT I have to say that in BOTH innings, I found fault with ONE aspect of his batting: he tried to hit everything in the air! Now, when you do that, there is a high chance of a mistake leading to your dismissal. He well could have gone along the ground for some time, where a mishit would not lead to a dismissal as often as when you go aerial. With the field largely in, he could still have score many boundaries too. There is a difference between being very aggressive, and being mindlessly aggressive!!!

  • suresh on July 17, 2010, 8:16 GMT

    Nice [imaginative] article. Looks like you have known Afridi from school days.

  • zamil on July 17, 2010, 8:05 GMT

    Another excellent article by Mike Holmas. I'm becoming a great fan of this guy.

  • Omar Hussain on July 17, 2010, 8:00 GMT

    I am always on the outlook for neutral commentaries and this is one of the most reasonable one.What you have overlooked here Mike is that Afridi lacks discipline always had and always will.Test cricket is no place for him but if he had some pride in him he should have fought the Australians harder second time around.I thought he had matured but alas what a coward he has turned out: to throw in the towel even before the second Test is started. Afridi's moods rubbed off on the others but then when was it Pakistan or PCB showed any kind of stability or i repeat discipline.I dislike the Oz arrogance but their is a lot to be admired in their soldiarity and never say die spirit.

  • Shujaat Ali Khan on July 17, 2010, 7:52 GMT

    AS far as Afridi's retirement is concerned, i guess he has acted too hastily to take the decision... He should give himself more of a chance... No doubt he is explosive in his shoes... but still he scored one of the highest scores after Salman Butt in the first innings... secondly, the conditions in this test were not as of in every test's first innings... I think he needs to give himself another chance...

    As for utt, i think he is a good choice but not the best.... I feel he needs more time to be as the vice captain, i guess Pakistan should turn back to Shoaib Malik and get him in as the captain for the test side while Afridi continues as the captain for one day and the T-20 side...

    But i am all praise for Afridi... if he decides to stay back, i feel it would be good for Pakistan cricket... He should captain all the three sides at least for 3 years... and NO YOUNIS KHAN PLEASE!!!!!!

    Bets of luck for the second test......

  • raja on July 17, 2010, 7:45 GMT

    firstly i believe it is in the best interest of pakistan cricket team that afridi retires from test cricket. he in my opinion is a very good captain in odi and t20 format cricket. pakistan needs to start fresh. fawad alam needs a fair chance. azzem ghummam is another candidate for batting and i certainley believe farhat is not a test player.

  • Muhammad Uzair on July 17, 2010, 7:43 GMT

    I am not agreed about the decision of taking Salman and Kamran as captain.Malik should be next name after afidi because as er the situation of Our team no body is performing except these.So i am afraid may be both of them cant bear the pressure of Captain and failed to perform .So as per my decision in the abcense of Younis Malik is the best appartunaty as a Captain

  • Sheheryar on July 17, 2010, 7:43 GMT

    Dear Holmans, I would also recommend you to have a look at Yousuf and Younus' statistics in Test batting and come up with another beautifully tailoured piece on the need for these two batsmen in current batting line-up which looks bleak and spineless.

  • Tahir on July 17, 2010, 7:30 GMT

    Sad to see this thing happening at the beginning of a long series, but hats off to Shahid Afridi for being frank. Test cricket and to a certain extent ODI cricket is not his forte. Unfortunately the same attitude of the upcoming youngsters in his team is no different either. They are all geared up for the T20 stuff. Same goes with Chris Gayle of WI.

    Pakistan need to stick to current crop of youngsters. I thought Azhar Ali has a good temperament and should be given more opportunities. So should Umar Amin at 20 years is OK. If Pakistan had just done a little better batting in the first innings, the result might have been quite surprising.

    So Pakistan, just keep your composre intact, this series will go a long way in building the confidence of the youngsters. Mind you we have several players whose average age is no more than 20 years. I have full confidence.

    I feel Salman Butt should take the reins as apart from his recent good form, he comes across well in chats.

  • wakeel on July 17, 2010, 7:18 GMT

    I LIKE THE OPTIMISIM..indeed it was a good match regardless of the result.

  • Saad bin Rasheed on July 17, 2010, 7:17 GMT

    I really like this article and i do agree with what ever has written above but i would like to add few points in it, Afridi is a real entertainer but his decision to retire from test cricket is right because he knew that he can not compete with team like Australia in test cricket with current Pakistan 11, two new debudents along with Umer Akmal and Amir who have very little experience of playing test cricket and afride him self playing after 4 years, although Amir did really well but still he is a youngster and he is in his learning stage, when you play test cricket against the leading side like Australia you should have your experienced players, playing in your test team like Yousuf and Younus. We hope PCB will think about it and take correct decisions for the beterment of Pakistan cricket and its future

    Cheers

  • Asif Ansari on July 17, 2010, 7:00 GMT

    I, myself, am an avid fan of Shahid Afridi but the innings he played in Lords really made me feel that he should be retire from test cricket. Next morning, I came to know that he has retired and in my opinion it is really a wise decision.

    If he already made up his mind before lords to play his natural game then he should have batted as an opener or number 3, so that even if he gets out, later batsmen plan their innings accordingly instead of coming at no. 7 and start slogging against a top bowling attack of Australians.

    He is a great player in every respect, but this is really a sad end of his test cricket career.

  • haroon S on July 17, 2010, 6:47 GMT

    Nice article.I think the problem with Pakistan cricket is more its managment(PCB chairman to start with) than the players.The indiscipline seems right through the ranks...i want Butt to be the first person to be sacked, but sadly he has no shame in his failures~!

  • Anonymous on July 17, 2010, 6:42 GMT

    :(

  • zak on July 17, 2010, 6:33 GMT

    Another day another drama at PCB. Just as they were showing some positive signs of improvement, here comes another distraction. These guys have absolutely no idea about sense of professionalism. Looking forward to see what is next for this team. More drama over captaincy.

  • Narayan G on July 17, 2010, 6:31 GMT

    There is no place for 'Larger than life" people in Test cricket. I cannot believe you could be so naive. So blind towards this utterly useless Pak cricketer. And your comment about Australia being out for less than 100 "IF" they had batted on wed.. that is pathetic. there are no places for "Ifs" and "Buts" in Test cricket. Your article nails the fact that... you are only as good as Afridi when it comes to Test cricket. I would suggest you limit your articles to useless T20s and uses Pakistani T20 cricket team. Afridi!! Thanks for all your entertainments... or atleast your umpteen tries to entertain.... You were not born to be a cricketer because Test cricket is Real cricket... try another field. may be some "Wrestling"!!!

  • Abbas on July 17, 2010, 6:21 GMT

    BREAKING NEWS: apparently, there was some politics involved in the decision coz the Pakistan's President was brainwashed and told to remove AFridi as a TEST captain so AFridi had no option but 2 leave... SAD :(

  • Bilal on July 17, 2010, 6:15 GMT

    Salman butt just play himself not for pakistan, he should play till the end if he is a good player like, other great players but I think he dont have a sence that how to play good inning, PCB should back Muhammad Yousuf he is a back bone of pakistani cricket team.

  • shuja zaidi on July 17, 2010, 6:13 GMT

    Shahid Afridi's action is completely emotional.He should reconsider his retirement and play test cricket as a player bring Abdul Razzaq as Captain.Get rid of Umar Akmal from Test cRICKET.

  • Tahir Imtiaz on July 17, 2010, 6:12 GMT

    Well said...!

    Pakistan cricket has always been full of fun, on the field and off the field. You will find the most talented players in this country and a lot of drama everywhere.

    I won't be surprised to hear a news tomorrow morning that "Umar Amin" or "Azhar Ali" has been announced as captain of Pakistan team!!! LOLZ.

    You will hardly find such an incapable management in PCB history!

    Let's cross the fingers and see who becomes the captain now. May be "Yasir Hameed". hahahaha

  • Muthu on July 17, 2010, 6:11 GMT

    Due to the Pakistan Board's bad decision the team missed the serivice of Md.Yoosuf. He may not be the best capitan but he is one of the best batsman of the world at present.

  • Tahir Ishaque on July 17, 2010, 6:06 GMT

    The dumiest and stuppid person in cricket is Mr. Ijaz Butt who the head of Cricket affairs in Pakistan. He has some close political link with Goverments. Before his it Mr. Nasim Ashraf another Cartoon. Musharaf friend. Before Him there was Mr. Tauqir Zia , Fool ........................... Cricket in Pakistan is at stake for almost more than 10 years due to such Jokers.

  • M.Ali.H on July 17, 2010, 5:51 GMT

    THE CALL WHICH AIJAZ BUTT MADE TO yOUSUF should have been made 4 weeks ago and He has not made that needed call to Younus yet.As one of the commentrator said that "you can not expect Boys can do the Mens job". The old demented Goat(aka Buffon as per Mr. Speed) who heads PCB does not know that if has made those two calls for country sake he should likely not be humiliated by the Pointing and CO.But that is the story of a country who has been ruled by these corrupt,egomaniac and incompetent administrators from Top to Bottom. When Argentine lost in quarter final their President kept on calling Maradona and inviting him and team to presidential Palace though Maradona even refused to come on phone with her.That is how you traet your heroes and look what we did to Younus and Yousuf.Quaid-Azam has no knowledge of humun psychology otherwise he would have thought before what he did to sub-continent

  • Amazed on July 17, 2010, 5:49 GMT

    Afridi is definintely disfunctional, it is absurd to say there is only one way he knows to bat, he is an experienced cricketer and if that is so he is not fit to even play junior cricket. If he had a functional brain he would use it especially not to bite balls in front of 14 cameras during an ODI. The pakistanis as a whole are either dim witted or on some kind of weed, running into or stretching accross a batsman who has just got out is certainly not in the spirit of cricket and it is shameful that these guys are allowed on the hallowed lords turf.

  • ali sabir on July 17, 2010, 5:43 GMT

    It is stupid thing that new players are playing where even they are not able to play in any series in pakistan.Malik Or Yausif shold made captin.

  • Abul Hasnat on July 17, 2010, 5:41 GMT

    First, the loss:

    In an earlier blog, I had suggested a Pakistan squad w/o the two new caps: Azhar and Amin replacing them with Yasir and Malick. After winning two T 20's Pakistan must not experiment in the very first test match. I also preferred Ajmal ovar Kaneria because Kaneria is relatively more expensive. In the end Pakistan lost; a very well expected result.

    Shahid Afridi seems a very emotional man and goes for the kill. On many occasions he gets trapped. He knew his weakness and kept out of Test cricket until the captaincy was thrust upon him. Being a very devout Pakistani, he took this responsibility in great stride. I have great respect for this man. He will always be respected for being so candid in giving up his leadership.

    Pakistan should select some one who deserves his place by virtue of his performance including fielding. If Salman Butt improves his fielding he is the one. For remainder of the tour I would suggest Youns Khan as captain and recalling Yousuf.

  • sunny on July 17, 2010, 5:41 GMT

    excellent excellent article. loved reading it. everything you mentioned made sense and touched the heart. Great reading good articles on cricinfo since some are just of narrow minded individuals. you seem to have a different perspective which is good. keep up the good work mate. Cheers

  • santanu on July 17, 2010, 5:40 GMT

    people say dhoni is overhyped.what about afridi?

  • Bhupendra Bhattarai on July 17, 2010, 5:35 GMT

    I am huge fan of Shahid Afridi and pakistan team, i follw them almost on every match ever since 2007. Their unpredictability has got some proximity with my life. I think Shahid fascinates test cricket, i am not sure as a captain but as a batsmen, I believe he gives life to coma test cricket and proves how exciting team match can be, Let us just take afridi out of Lord's test and see how incomplete it looks. I think he had to step up and come up to the task i feel sorrow for his decission any way it is his career and if he thinks he is not able to it is all upto team but i want afridi to captain Pakistan in limited format and just cannot wait afridi to be lifting 2011 world cup trophy beating their money Australia in Mumbai crowd, which i suppose will be wish for pakistan's lose

  • Syed Iqtadar Ahmed on July 17, 2010, 5:33 GMT

    So Mohammed Yousuf or Younis Khan lined up for the remaining summer?

    Update: Yousuf is back!

  • Salman Ilyas on July 17, 2010, 5:26 GMT

    Its not Afridi's mistake it was a PCB decision to made him test captain. I am assuming that he didn't have the say in choosing the final 11 and i am pretty much sure that he doesn't want Imran Farhat in the playing 11 but as you know the politics in the Pakistan Cricket destroying it. As you see Pathan Players, Karachi Players and Punjabi Players. Most of the players in the team are from Punjab Province (I am just clearing the picture of politics in the team) in my opinion your best players should be in the team it doesn't matter where they are from. The Quota system is totally destroying cricket in Pakistan.

  • JERAL D'SOUZA on July 17, 2010, 5:14 GMT

    pakistan desperately need mohd yousuf and younis khan in the batting line up. the pakistan board needs to wake up

    jeral

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • JERAL D'SOUZA on July 17, 2010, 5:14 GMT

    pakistan desperately need mohd yousuf and younis khan in the batting line up. the pakistan board needs to wake up

    jeral

  • Salman Ilyas on July 17, 2010, 5:26 GMT

    Its not Afridi's mistake it was a PCB decision to made him test captain. I am assuming that he didn't have the say in choosing the final 11 and i am pretty much sure that he doesn't want Imran Farhat in the playing 11 but as you know the politics in the Pakistan Cricket destroying it. As you see Pathan Players, Karachi Players and Punjabi Players. Most of the players in the team are from Punjab Province (I am just clearing the picture of politics in the team) in my opinion your best players should be in the team it doesn't matter where they are from. The Quota system is totally destroying cricket in Pakistan.

  • Syed Iqtadar Ahmed on July 17, 2010, 5:33 GMT

    So Mohammed Yousuf or Younis Khan lined up for the remaining summer?

    Update: Yousuf is back!

  • Bhupendra Bhattarai on July 17, 2010, 5:35 GMT

    I am huge fan of Shahid Afridi and pakistan team, i follw them almost on every match ever since 2007. Their unpredictability has got some proximity with my life. I think Shahid fascinates test cricket, i am not sure as a captain but as a batsmen, I believe he gives life to coma test cricket and proves how exciting team match can be, Let us just take afridi out of Lord's test and see how incomplete it looks. I think he had to step up and come up to the task i feel sorrow for his decission any way it is his career and if he thinks he is not able to it is all upto team but i want afridi to captain Pakistan in limited format and just cannot wait afridi to be lifting 2011 world cup trophy beating their money Australia in Mumbai crowd, which i suppose will be wish for pakistan's lose

  • santanu on July 17, 2010, 5:40 GMT

    people say dhoni is overhyped.what about afridi?

  • sunny on July 17, 2010, 5:41 GMT

    excellent excellent article. loved reading it. everything you mentioned made sense and touched the heart. Great reading good articles on cricinfo since some are just of narrow minded individuals. you seem to have a different perspective which is good. keep up the good work mate. Cheers

  • Abul Hasnat on July 17, 2010, 5:41 GMT

    First, the loss:

    In an earlier blog, I had suggested a Pakistan squad w/o the two new caps: Azhar and Amin replacing them with Yasir and Malick. After winning two T 20's Pakistan must not experiment in the very first test match. I also preferred Ajmal ovar Kaneria because Kaneria is relatively more expensive. In the end Pakistan lost; a very well expected result.

    Shahid Afridi seems a very emotional man and goes for the kill. On many occasions he gets trapped. He knew his weakness and kept out of Test cricket until the captaincy was thrust upon him. Being a very devout Pakistani, he took this responsibility in great stride. I have great respect for this man. He will always be respected for being so candid in giving up his leadership.

    Pakistan should select some one who deserves his place by virtue of his performance including fielding. If Salman Butt improves his fielding he is the one. For remainder of the tour I would suggest Youns Khan as captain and recalling Yousuf.

  • ali sabir on July 17, 2010, 5:43 GMT

    It is stupid thing that new players are playing where even they are not able to play in any series in pakistan.Malik Or Yausif shold made captin.

  • Amazed on July 17, 2010, 5:49 GMT

    Afridi is definintely disfunctional, it is absurd to say there is only one way he knows to bat, he is an experienced cricketer and if that is so he is not fit to even play junior cricket. If he had a functional brain he would use it especially not to bite balls in front of 14 cameras during an ODI. The pakistanis as a whole are either dim witted or on some kind of weed, running into or stretching accross a batsman who has just got out is certainly not in the spirit of cricket and it is shameful that these guys are allowed on the hallowed lords turf.

  • M.Ali.H on July 17, 2010, 5:51 GMT

    THE CALL WHICH AIJAZ BUTT MADE TO yOUSUF should have been made 4 weeks ago and He has not made that needed call to Younus yet.As one of the commentrator said that "you can not expect Boys can do the Mens job". The old demented Goat(aka Buffon as per Mr. Speed) who heads PCB does not know that if has made those two calls for country sake he should likely not be humiliated by the Pointing and CO.But that is the story of a country who has been ruled by these corrupt,egomaniac and incompetent administrators from Top to Bottom. When Argentine lost in quarter final their President kept on calling Maradona and inviting him and team to presidential Palace though Maradona even refused to come on phone with her.That is how you traet your heroes and look what we did to Younus and Yousuf.Quaid-Azam has no knowledge of humun psychology otherwise he would have thought before what he did to sub-continent