October 1, 2012

Twenty20 World Cup 2012

Pakistan lose bottle for Kohli's vintage

Kamran Abbasi
Mohammad Hafeez is bowled, India v Pakistan, Super Eights, World Twenty20, Colombo, September 30, 2012
Defence rarely suits Pakistan's nature, yet Mohammad Hafeez took backward steps at critical moments in the match against India  © Associated Press


The heat was high in Colombo but Pakistan froze. In a game in which they had too less to lose, and India started poorly, Pakistan were never relaxed. India, as has become the way in these encounters, played with self-belief that once belonged to Pakistan when facing their neighbours. The psychological balance shifted many years ago--it might have been Sachin Tendulkar's six off Shoaib Akhtar in the 2003 World Cup that was the trigger--and India look unlikely to give it up.

Why should they? Such booty has to be seized, it is rarely surrendered. In this game, where the strength of India's bowling seemed innocuous and the bounty of psychological advantage was for looting, Pakistan were positive on paper but inhibited in execution. Supporters rarely forgive defeat to India. They resent it more when a white flag is raised upon first sight of the enemy.

Pakistan's plan was a brave one. Win the toss and bat first, put India's bowlers to the sword. Promote Shahid Afridi to number 3, where he can cause maximum damage early in an innings and reacquaint himself with Irfan Pathan. Back your spinners, even young Raza Hasan, to outfox India's superior batsmen. But these were empty gestures, orders carried out with a reluctant heart. Captain Mohammad Hafeez, a professor with a weighty assignment, was a victim of the moment. When a leader should lead, Hafeez was dragged to oblivion by the gravity of the situation.

Defence rarely suits Pakistan's nature, yet Hafeez took backward steps at two critical moments. First, his decision to prod and poke his way through the Powerplay overs killed the tempo of Pakistan's innings. India's bowlers were decent, nothing more. The captain's reserve sent the wrong signal to his men. It spoke of nervousness, a fear of the occasion.

The innings never recovered and left India with almost nothing to do for victory. Still, Pakistan's only chance was to attack. Hafeez began brightly, posting a slip and encouraging his men. But too quickly Pakistan were on the defensive again. Close catchers were disposed of within the Powerplay when Pakistan required wickets. The field was dispersed upon the end of the Powerplay when Pakistan could least afford such easy runs.

Hafeez's body language and decision-making was of a man resigned to the punishment of Virat Kohli's blade. The Professor was calculating run rates, scheming for future examinations, while Kohli dealt expertly with the here and now. Such high art was unnecessary from Kohli, Pakistan weren't a pretty picture in this match. It was a collective failure, an abject surrender.

The worry for Dav Whatmore will be that his team's performance level has dropped with each game. The players need to be re-energised and re-focused. Inhibition against India must give way to aggression against Australia. Hafeez must come out of his shell, put away his introspection. And some hard decisions are required. Yasir Arafat's all-round struggles should give way to Abdul Razzaq. The batting order requires a dependable batsman for others to play around, which means Asad Shafiq in place of Shoaib Malik or Imran Nazir. The final necessity is for Umar Akmal, Pakistan's most assured batsman in this World Cup, to bat up the order.

All these changes are unlikely but Pakistan must act because such lame surrenders, as the one against India, are echoes of a troubled age.

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

RSS Feeds: Kamran Abbasi

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by mubasher fan of Afridi on (October 6, 2012, 7:16 GMT)

very well written blog Mr. Abbasi as always. if pakistan select Ahmed Shehzad a much better & accomplished prospect compare to Imran Nazir dangerous but highly unpredictable. had wahab Riaz been selected in place of patchy & shaky Sami, Junaid khan in place of average Yasir Arfat who can't be called a match winner, pakistan would have ideally fit to beat India. had management decided to try out Afridi on no.3 spot in the whole tournament along with Nasir opening with kamran akmal & Hafeez batting lower down the order pakistan could easily made it to finals of the T20 world cup which unfortunately didn't happen. i would also like to add one thing here that Afridi was ideally no.1 choice to lead pakistan in this world cup instead of slow, patchy & feared Hafeez.

Posted by manojkumar on (October 5, 2012, 11:49 GMT)

wel playrd india..but the thing was there was not enough on board against sa..pak nd aus to be ruled out from t20 wc..they both played an gambling cricket to put india out..

Posted by Ramesh jayaganesh on (October 5, 2012, 9:04 GMT)

I clearly don't understand how a coach of dave whatmore stature could celebrate winning a practice game,he should take a clue from gary kirsten who just raised his arms in joy after india winning the worl cup.

Posted by Moodhi on (October 4, 2012, 18:35 GMT)

All top cricket playing countries are good with some really talented players. It all depends on how you play on the day, under conditions and most of all how you handle the pressure. All of those who are mentioning figures such India 8 Pakistan 0 in worldcups can they really say that India are unbeatable and Pakistan can never beat them ? that would just be childish. The fact is Pakistan being such a talented side are the worst to handle pressure. Good Luck West Indies, as they too deserve to win especially as in their days they were almost unbeatable.

While Indians should learn to have a better friendship with their neighbouring brothers Pakistan unlike Virat Kohli and Suresh Raina, very unprofessional of them.

Posted by Sheikh Asfandyar on (October 4, 2012, 13:27 GMT)

For a country denied international cricket at home for a long time and their cricketers unwelcome in the biggest Twenty20 league, it is fascinating to watch the way Pakistan have dominated in Twenty20 cricket. Despite limited opportunities, the green brigade is the most successful team in the format at all the World T20 editions, they have been the team to beat. - Hindustan Times

Posted by Faisal on (October 4, 2012, 13:12 GMT)

Everybody have criticised Pak, n as wel they have given the stats of Ind V Pak in WC, but they forgot to mention the overall stats btwn Ind V Pak where Pak is way ahead and as well I dont give any credit to India at all as compared to Pak, simply becoz everytime Pak have played the tournament, they have at least went to semis, look at India, twice they could not even make the super 8's forget about semis except once. so Pak is better than any other teams, particularly India.

Posted by Kutta singh on (October 4, 2012, 12:24 GMT)

Dear ripppon,

I don't understand how you can say that Pakistan relies on luck. I mean if you play a game the better side wins. That's why they trashed the aussies and they are into the semis.

India didn't do anything at all

Posted by Sanjeev on (October 4, 2012, 11:36 GMT)

India 8-Pakistan 0

at world cups (5 in 50/50; 3 in 20/20)

Posted by sd11 on (October 4, 2012, 11:31 GMT)

what ever you people say abt indian cricket team but Pakistan makes the way towards semis

Posted by haroon on (October 4, 2012, 11:15 GMT)

No matter Pakistan lose or win but India truly played brilliantly they handle the pressure very well,After very bad strt at the end the finished quite decently

Posted by Sheeraz on (October 4, 2012, 7:46 GMT)

A well written article. One thing that cannot be contested is the fact that theres a mental block against India in World cups. Having said that, I don't agree with our Indian brothers thinking India is a better T20 team. Pakistans a much better t20 team than India despite IPL and everything. Pakistans record proves that (has the 2nd best record among all teams.To top that Pakistan is the only team to reach all 4 semi finals of the t20 World cup, whereas India haven't gone past the super eights after the innaugral t20 world cup.

Posted by Muhammad Faisal on (October 4, 2012, 7:35 GMT)

I have read and analysed all the comments on this article which i actually did not read.Almost all the Indian Fans have tried to assure that Indian Team is a better team than Pakistan by exampling S.Tendulkar, Kohli,Yuvi,Dhoni etc. As a Pakistani Fan,i admit we are unperdictable at times but what about India,the T-20 Profesor,go out of tournaments in the initial rounds in the presence of all these so called great players.I remember,when Ind were touring Aus in in tri-angular series recently,when they knew, they are out of the tournament, they played just furtail agressive usless match, won that but wen out.May i ask, Why they could not depict before???????/ The same case was in Asia Cup where they got beaten the Weaket Bangalas but went out of the tournament and the same with the current tounament. I really feels sorry for Indian fans who expects so highly from their team which mosly produces zero results desping their lamping of professionalism.

Posted by Faisal on (October 4, 2012, 5:35 GMT)

Kamran, I think there are different ways to look at the way Hafiz acted in the field. I would say had he kept the close in catching fielders and risked leaking too many runs too quickly, we may have lost to India inside 10 overs. That meant that right now India would be in semis. Perhaps Hafiz thought about it and stretched India's chase to the 17th over for making sure that NRR stays below that of Pakistan. Hafiz knew the margin India lost with against Aussies. 129 may be a dicey total but not something India wouldnt have been able to chase. So I think it very well may have been a master stroke in the end by the Professor who finally read the situation to perfection in the end and gave up the game in favor of achieving the greater goal of winning the title again...

Posted by cricket_fan_1980 on (October 4, 2012, 5:19 GMT)

Indian dominance hasn't really replaced the Pakistani dominance over India that was evident throughout the late 70's, 80's, 90's and early 00's. It has only become more evident because of a higher ratio of world stage events vs India v Pakistan tours. Unless there are solid India v Pakistan tours, the true mettle and quality of these sides, as they perform against each other, will never be tested. Without a test match, no one can really sit back and say India has gained dominance over Pakistan cricket. Sure, they have performed in the world limited overs events against Pakistan, but this is a total collection of maybe 8 or 9 T20 or ODI games? What about the overall Pak:Ind win:loss ratio of, I can't remember, 8:5 in favour of Pakistan? Well, either way, these two teams need to play a 3-test series! Anyhow, Kohli is the only real quality guy in the Indian squad. If he is figured out (matter-of-time ;) then, India will need to re-think many strategies.

Posted by Danish on (October 3, 2012, 19:38 GMT)

I prefer Cricket being discussed which is exactly what a Pak v India match is NOT

Posted by Aditya Mookerjee on (October 3, 2012, 13:26 GMT)

People were comparing Pakistan and India. According to me, the game in progress is a perfect balance. The positive, and negative, work for each other. The idea of winning and loosing is, that if a person is playing the opposite player is also playing. I actually missed the game.

Posted by Qazi Hassan on (October 3, 2012, 13:06 GMT)

Even if Pakistan goes to #1 in Ranking and India becomes #last, Pakistan will lose to India a WC of any format. It is a given. Even Imran Khan, the supposed super captain of Pakistan, always lost to India. The match against India matters to Pakistani people more than the cup, yet the captains manage to lose it. In future if any captain wins a match against India, I will consider him a bigger hero than Imran Khan and Younis Khan who won us a WC each.

Posted by Bosco Martyres on (October 3, 2012, 11:21 GMT)

In my opinion the Pakistan team needs the followin changes: 1. Bring in a specialist wicket keeper. Kamran Akmal is always going to screw up, something that absolutely cannot be tolerated at this level. 2. Get rid of Shoib Malik who is absolutely useless. 3. Give up on Afridi as a batsman. 4. Move Umar Akmal up the order 5. Re-think the batting line-up with the following in mind: Is Imran Nazir good enough as an opener? Can Kamran Akmal make it as a batsman? Can Razzak replace Afridi as an all-rounder? Should Asad Shafiq be given a chance? As for the bowlers. I would go with 3 Specialist spinners. Saeed Ajmal, Hasan Reza and Shahid Afridi. Hafeez' spin is a bonus. The fast bowlers could be rotated among Umar Gul, Yassir Arafat and Junaid Khan. The wicket keeper chosen should also be able to bat.

Posted by Pakman on (October 3, 2012, 8:01 GMT)

Yes, Hafeez's mentality shifted very quickly from trying to win to trying not to lose with a big margin so that NRR remains favorable.

In hindsight, though, it seems like the strategy paid off. By keeping a defensive field, they ensured that India scored runs slowly, in singles, so that that that the NRR remains under control. As a result of that defensiveness, we are now in the semis!

Posted by Malik on (October 3, 2012, 7:59 GMT)

Mr ripon answer is very simple if you look up performance of Pakistan against Aus and S.A.You say Pakistan have no match winner bowler and quality bowling like Aus Ind and SL then see ICC ranking in T 20 Test and ODI top bowler belong to Pakistan Instead of criticism India should search for new bowling attack.

Posted by Malik on (October 3, 2012, 7:56 GMT)

Mr Ripon Mention that Pakistan play dont like professional team and there bowling and batting have no match winner secondly he mention that Pakistan dont have Bowling attack as good as Aus Sri India have then answer is simple see all the matches play by Pakistan team specially against big team like S.A and Aus. Simple answer to Your response.

Posted by fahad on (October 3, 2012, 6:59 GMT)

Well to those trying to find all these imaginary triggers, the balance has not shifted yet, but it is currently in the process. We won those famous tests in chennai and kolkata after jadeja's onslaught and prasad's send off. Then there was a brutal Ijaz Ahmed century that resulted in the most one sided match in history. We knocked india out in champions trophy 2004 and 2009. Asia cup 2005 or 2006 also comes to mind when we beat them in the final. Akmal's heroics in Mohali and the subsequent win in Bangalore. Afridi's 45 ball century and hammering them 4-2 in India in that series. Akmal's century in Karachi when we recovered from 29 for 6 to win. So in short since 1996, there has been no clear balance of power. I fear it has been changing in favor of India since Asia cup 2010.

Posted by Iftikhar Ali Malik on (October 3, 2012, 6:53 GMT)

Next match , Pakistan will do well to retire Imran Nazir . He can only score againt second tierTeams . It would be better to bring in Sami . He is a much better batsman as compared to Imran Nazir and he will add to the variety ofthePakistan attack . Also ,,it will be better to have Abdul Razaq andUmar Akmal batting. Up and Kamran Akmal should bat down . What Pakistan badly misses is Junaid who would have added great strength the Pakistan Team in bowling . The selectors performed great dis-service to Pakistan by selecting a low level performer such as Shoaib Malik and not bringing in Junaid forthw T 20 Team . Lastly , we hope Shoaib Malik is not given an opportunity to perform for the Sri Lankans by being given even a single over to bowl .

Posted by Iftikhar Ali Malik on (October 3, 2012, 6:46 GMT)

Next match , Pakistan will do well to retire Imran Nazir . He can only score againt second tierTeams . It would be better to bring in Sami . He is a much better batsman as compared to Imran Nazir and he will add to the variety ofthePakistan attack . Also ,,it will be better to have Abdul Razaq andUmar Akmal batting. Up and Kamran Akmal should bat down . What Pakistan badly misses is Junaid who would have added great strength the Pakistan Team in bowling . The selectors performed great dis-service to Pakistan by selecting a low level performer such as Shoaib Malik and not bringing in Junaid forthw T 20 Team . Lastly , we hope Shoaib Malik is not given an opportunity to perform for the Sri Lankans by being given even a single over to bowl .

Posted by aftab from VB on (October 3, 2012, 0:21 GMT)

Reverse the result of Pak vs Aus, and you'll see people having a ball describing Pak team this way and that way. Now, all they want to say is that Aus made is to semi despite big loss!? How about 'Pak continues to be in the last four' being the main news! Oh well, that's not news to me. Any way, your article is vindicated, as Pakistan team was not as stiff today as against India. SL and WI are some teams aganist which Pakistan is normally relaxed and have good history. Hopefully, that's the sequence from here on. Otherwise, we have to play to our potential yet again :)

Posted by Mohammad Saleem on (October 2, 2012, 23:54 GMT)

Pakistan team's spinners shown their strength that matches are not won only by batting. Really seen amazing spin bowling while watching Australia/Pakistan encounter yesterday. Great Win !

Posted by Sharjeel Abbasi on (October 2, 2012, 20:27 GMT)

we should give benifit of doubt to hafeez, there are lesson to be learn, and its good they fall early so now they will be more watchful for next step.... delima is PCB change the captain after every major tournament loss, even if pakistan win or loose PCB should keep hafeez in place....

he is doing far better than misbah and hafeez in every department of the game ... and he is far better in terms of performance and useability .... Razzaq is in for rest of the matches...hope for the best now...

Posted by Shigri on (October 2, 2012, 19:55 GMT)

No matter Pakistan lose or win but India truly played brilliantly they handle the pressure very well,After very bad strt at the end the finished quite decently ....

Posted by jazim hussain on (October 2, 2012, 19:19 GMT)

It was really a good game of cricket, the team was balanced enough to upset the oppposition, by the help of razaq's nock they managed to cross the 150 mark, otherwise the results would have been diffrent.Aussie lost both of thier guns for nothing and they were strugling to make it, but fortunately they qualified in the very last over but were unable to win and made chances more difficult for india......................

Posted by Jawed Saleem on (October 2, 2012, 18:48 GMT)

Whoa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 'Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh ya beauty HAFEEZ & Co, What a “MAGFKINIFICENT” parformence !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!' Masterful planning and execution by GIANT KILLERS !!!!!!!!!!

Business as usual - DEMOLITION SQUAD MARCHES ON !!!!

Bring on Sri Lanka !!!!!!!!

Posted by Khalid Anwar on (October 2, 2012, 15:53 GMT)

Giving the two overs to Shoaib Malik when in the previous match he was given an over and he had gone for was a big blunder . gull was bowling well with an economy rate of 5.5 would have helped in restricting Australia to less than 111 . In addition , Abdul Razaq a much better bowler than Shoaib Malik with great experience of bowling at the death was not given opportunity to bowl . These are the big mistakes Hafeez made .

Posted by Iftikhar Chaudhry on (October 2, 2012, 12:55 GMT)

Whenever Shoaib Malik is asked to bowl he proves to be the trump card for the opposition . He did the same in this match against the Australians .,

Posted by Mian Iftikhar Malik on (October 2, 2012, 12:21 GMT)

Why is Kamran Akmal kept in the Team as a wicket keeper ? He is terrible at wicket keeping and a pain to watch . He's cores runs in about one inning in five and does more damage through dropped catches , missed stumpings and fumbles all the time . Why is he preferred over Sarfaraz , both a far better wicketkeeper and a batsman ?!

Posted by Abdul Hameed Jhumra on (October 2, 2012, 12:08 GMT)

What the PCB needs to do after this Tournament ist to get rid of the deadwood in theTeam : Imran Nazir , Shoaib Malik , Afridi , Misbah, Youniis Khan , Yasir Arafat ., the other area to address is A crack down on cronyism . If the PCB neglects to do so Pakistan,s future in cricket will continue tobe injeapordy .,

Posted by Javed HAsan on (October 2, 2012, 11:41 GMT)

These three T20! Matches Afridi once showed that he is totally useless as a batsman . His bowling in the last two years has also deteriorated to the extent he finds taking wickets very difficult. He is now an qctorinmTV advertisements . He shouldfor Pakistan,s sake retire and do advertisement acting whole time . Why is a bowler ofiutstanding merrit rested and Afridi continously given a chance . I suppose he will announce once again he is determined to perform . PCB wake up and retire andbremove the deadwood : Imran Nazir, Shoaib Malik , Afridi , Younis Khan , Misbah , Kamran Akmal .

Posted by Ashraf Ahmed Janjua on (October 2, 2012, 11:20 GMT)

Equation forrest Pakistan,s loss to India : Inclusion ofbImran Nazir , Yasir Arafat , Continuing Exclusion of Abdul Razaq .

Posted by Abdul Hameed Hamdani on (October 2, 2012, 10:47 GMT)

Why is Sami out ? He is a better batsman than Afridi and Shoaib Malik and he can also bowl better than both of them .

Posted by Ahmed Yar Khan on (October 2, 2012, 10:37 GMT)

Hafeez ,s performance against first tier Teams continues to be poor . He is a very poor leader .

Posted by Shamshad Ali Khan on (October 2, 2012, 10:33 GMT)

Huge mistake including Imran Nazir . He simply is not inthe class to play against first tier Teams., each time he has been included he get out cheaply through foolish strokes due to his poor technique . This puts further presure on Pakistan,s middle order . The other continuing mistake is the inclusion of Shoaib Malik . Sami is a better batsman as compared to Imran Nazir and he is a very useful bowler .

Posted by Shabbir Mahmood on (October 2, 2012, 9:35 GMT)

Pakistan do not have quality batsmen.Secondly batstman like Hafiz has genuine flaw against swing bowling and he not only plays every match but also does the captaincy.Finally if you keep playing with Kamran when he will drop catches in crucial time for sure!

Posted by pak on (October 2, 2012, 9:17 GMT)

i think they took pressure of the big game...they should go with razzaq in place of afridi and sohail tanveer in for Yasir arfat..there were lot of mistakes in captancies as well...!!

Posted by stn on (October 2, 2012, 9:10 GMT)

I heard Ganguly saying that india has dominated pak in the past 9 years. He should get his stats right. Pak defeated india in more matches in 2004(6-3), and in 2005 again pak was the more dominant team, when Inzi's team defeated Ind at their home 4-2. In the past whole decade 2000-2010 pak won more matches than India.PERIOD.

Posted by gnr on (October 2, 2012, 9:06 GMT)

U should not entirly blame this team for loss against INDIA i dont know how the writer missed the most important & deciding factor that INDIANS plays spinners better & the days of glorious fast bowling are gone, &the present pacers are not even ashade near to the GREAT WASIM, WAQAR & in batsmen no replacements for MY FAVOURATE INZY, EVEN YUSUF, YUNUS the present day batsmen in pak team are nothing compared to these greats where as IND find KOHLI, ROHIT, RAINAS who are capable of scoring 30 BALL 50 , BUT AT PRESENT IN PAK TEAM we except only UMAR AKMAL capable of scoring more than run a ball AFRIDI is aspent force , AGAINST OTHER TEAMS U R SPINNERS WINS MATCHES BUT VRS IND they doesnt count , see the way AJMAL is failing against IND they r playing him as if he is a ordinery bowler where as others are clueless thats the deference,in the past also all pak wins vrs ind are by pacers but now the senario changed so its indian batters who are winning matches so my dear writer give credit

Posted by MQI on (October 2, 2012, 8:41 GMT)


Posted by Waqar on (October 2, 2012, 8:37 GMT)

"India, as has become the way in these encounters, played with self-belief that once belonged to Pakistan when facing their neighbours. The psychological balance shifted many years ago"

Mr. Abbassi, very well written.....and addtion from someone "balance shifted from Miandad's 6 to Tendulkar's 6"

Posted by Syed Imran Abbas on (October 2, 2012, 8:11 GMT)

well its commen sense thing that we have batting issues and we need to strengthen our batting but team management is rather putting more and more bowlers in the side. why do you need 7 bowlers to bowl 20 overs. they all dont even complete their 4 over qota. Pakistan mucst get asad shafeeq in middle order and razzaq to replace arfat.

Posted by Surya Prakash Bhatta on (October 2, 2012, 7:36 GMT)

Good analysis about the game between India and Pakistan.Definitely it was fault of Mr.Hafeez being so defensive.Normal batting order which actually was prior to this game would have executed.Mental sharpness is very crucial in such pressure games.Now it's more than do or die situation for Pakistan to go ahead in the tournament.

Posted by Siana on (October 2, 2012, 7:34 GMT)

Pakistan, a place where you would rarely find the right person at the right job. We would waste some extremely talented players like Muhammad Zahid, Muhammad Akram, Mansoor Amjad,and Hammad Azam (the list goes on) for average players like Azhar Mehmood, Abdul Razzaq, Danish Kenaria, and Asad Shafiq. You know what is the problem of most Pakistanis? We all are very "Sianay", and Jack of all trades.

Posted by MAK123 on (October 2, 2012, 7:16 GMT)

Who are you fooling Mr. Abbasi? It was not about Hafeez or his the way, have you ever met Mr. Rehman Malik?

Posted by Shahid on (October 2, 2012, 5:00 GMT)

Two players are responsible for destroying momentum of two teams,,Richard levi for South Africa and Imran Nazir for pakistan..evrytym these two teams have to play under pressure wen their openers gift away wickets

Posted by SanjivAwesome on (October 2, 2012, 4:50 GMT)

I was brought up on a diet of the amazing Imran Khan, Miandad and Waqar and Wasim at their prime. As an India supporter, nothing gave me greater pleasure than to watch these amazing atheletes destroy other teams. Why don't Pak cricket administrators call these super heroes back to inspire their next generation of talented cricketers?

Posted by Amuthan Jawahar on (October 2, 2012, 4:42 GMT)

Good Article..... Pakistan is a good T20 side and they lost as India handled the pressure better.....Love watching India Pakistan matches since Javed miandad days when we loose to Pakistan in Sharjah most of the time... Good to see the change in fortunes in the past 8-9 years where India has started dominating...... Wish we both teams grow stronger in the years to come and our future generations too continue enjoying these encounters... Win or loose is part of game and what matters is the thrill and enjoyment these encounters produce...I wish good luck to Pakistan team and fans.......

Posted by Ali on (October 2, 2012, 3:41 GMT)

i think pakistan should drop shahid afridi and yasir arfaat and bring-in abdul razzaq and asad shafiq...

Posted by ANIL NARAYAN on (October 2, 2012, 3:37 GMT)


Posted by Shahid Akbar on (October 2, 2012, 3:03 GMT)

I would like to make it very simple-India played good cricket. End of story.

Posted by Talha on (October 2, 2012, 2:52 GMT)

This is just an average team. Just look at the captain aka the professor, who is nothing but a below average cricketer. He cannot lead from the front and the bunch of average cricketers (except for a few) he has cannot do wonders except winning against minnows or when Ajmal demolishes the batting lineups single handidly. Its better not to keep any hopes from this team. Every player over here is a legend and upto something except for a good game.

Posted by Bhatsameer on (October 2, 2012, 1:21 GMT)

We need to put shaoib malik at no 4 or 3 so that he settles in one two overs and then play big shots and replace arfat with razzak he will counter attack against austrilla the pitchs will help now spinners and it does not help fasters so hafeez should use all spinners there is no need of arafat remember my words pitch will help only spinners and afridi should bowl 2nd or 3rd over he will definetly get wicket

Posted by Haseeb on (October 2, 2012, 1:04 GMT)

Great article mr.Abassi. The article was very well summarized and out of this world. In the match, batting, bowling or fielding was a problem but not the major one. ThE MAJOR PROBLEM WAS HOW MUCH PRESSURE Pakistan was taking in. In fact, Afridi was already half out the minute he came to the crease.

Now, we should just pray to Almighty Allah that Pakistan InshAllah win their game against the Aussies and qualify the semis.

Posted by Syed J. Ahmed on (October 2, 2012, 0:59 GMT)

Stupid move to bat first, India is one of the best sides in the world when it comes to chasing (look at their recent record while chasing in big tournaments) Hafeez should've elected to ball first and instead of having 3 spinners (india is THE best side against spin bowling) he should've brought in Moh'd Sami an express baller. Hafeez made some bad decisions before the match even started which pretty much decided the fate of the whole match.

Posted by Dave on (October 2, 2012, 0:12 GMT)

A good, bold and to the point article. However, it looks to me that we are talking as such that Pakistan is as good team as India. Let's do the fact check, India is way better team than Pakistan and that is simply because of level of cricket and professionalism the team plays with. There are good players in Pakistan, but very few, like Umar Akmal but not enough to beat Team India. They need few more good batsmen. It's simple, how many times you expect Afridi to succeed with bat. May be once in a dozen matches, that is the exact odd that Pakistan can beat India. Pakistan used to dominate India when they had great bowling attack and India was not that great batting side. It's a different generation now, players like Sehwag, Gambhir, Yuvraj, Kohli, Raina and Dhoni are just fearless and have exact opposite attitude as Indians used to have in Imran Khan's era.

Posted by Al-amin Jwel on (October 1, 2012, 23:58 GMT)

I'm a Bangladeshi & a big fan of Pakistan team.I'm agree with Kamran Abbasi.

Hafiz's performance was so disappointing.He should came to bowl a spell as well as should played attacking with the bat.

Pakistan's opening partnership is not using the power-play and Hafiz looks nervous instead of encouraging players.Pakistan needs to utilize power-play.

Umar Akmal should play early in the order.

Abdur Razzak is must has to back replacing Yasir Arafat.

Asad Shafik is needed to give a chance replacing Imran Nazir.

Its time to reorganize team,build-up team sprite to beat Australia today.

Posted by H K on (October 1, 2012, 22:12 GMT)

I must admit, I am a little shocked after reading that Shoaib Malik should be replaced, I hope that was a joke! It is only Malik who looks to be the technically correct batsman who can rise to the occasion - he's proven it so far too, however, with the exception of only one game. Please drop Imran Nazir and bring in Assad Shafiq, get rid of Yasir Arafat too!

Posted by Sitanshu Shekhar on (October 1, 2012, 21:36 GMT)

I think you are being unnecessarily harsh on Md Hafeez. I see Hafeez and Misbah as the future leaders of Pakistan - Stable, intellectually bright (not the literacy, but the way they think and approach captaincy) and humble. As an Indian fan, I feel that Pakistan finally has the leadership to progress, and not rely on pure talent alone.

I agree that Hafeez made many mistakes, but I believe he will come out a better captain. Good luck to him and to Pakistan for the future. BTW, a little off topic, but does Hafeez sound and speak exactly like Dhoni. I find that resemblance quite striking.

Posted by Aamir on (October 1, 2012, 21:35 GMT)

I would keep Imran Nazir, atleast he does not waste balls and keep the scorecard going. Razzaq in place of Arafat and he should bat no. 3, then Nasir Jamshed followed by Umar Akmal. Next can be Kamran Akmal or Afridi. Razzaq is most desirable all rounder by any premier leagues whether India, Australia, England or SL then why are we not using him and keeping him on benches! Afridi does not deserve as a batsman, he is doing good as a spinner but do we need a 5th spinner in addition to Saeed Ajmal, Raza Hassan, Hafeez and Shoaib Malik???? I'll rather bring in Mohammad Sami and open bowling with him instead of Gul. And keep Gul at death overs with an older ball. An equation which is tested and works well.

Posted by satish on (October 1, 2012, 21:12 GMT)

I am from India, but surely would like Pakistan to play the kind of cricket they played in late 80's or till end of 90's. That would be the actual test to team India. The current breed of Pakistan cricketers do not have the will or zeel to win the way Akram, Javed, Salim, Izaz, Injy, Anwar did. They were class apart from the likes of Afridi. Afridi in my opinion does not even come close to those. There was always one or the other who pulled off a win from a losing position. I still wonder as to why Afridi is in the team. Pakistan has class bowlers in Ajmal, Gul who can win the match single handed, but then others should start to support them. Same with batting, Umar is playing great and others should rotate around him. Still surprised to see Umar Akmal so low down the order.

Posted by Amyn Habib on (October 1, 2012, 21:06 GMT)

Pakistan lost because they are a weak team. They are neither very talented nor experienced. It is not because of Hafeez's psychological weakness --although that probably contributed. The reason that Pakistan is a weak team is because they have a lot of underperforming players who are a burden on the team. An example is Afridi. His bowling is mediocre and his batting is an embarrassment. Yet game after game, the poor Afridi fan is waiting in vain for him to perform. You can send him early, you can send him late, it makes no difference and he embarrasses himself. Other players who need to leave are Imran Nazir (repeated failures), Yasir Arafat (never performed), and yes Kamran Akmal (repeated batting failures and terrible keeping). Razzak has been pretty mediocre throughout his career, so he is not the answer. These players need to removed from the team and new players brought in. There is a strange game of musical chairs in the Pakistan cricket in which failed players are dropped and then suddenly reappear and then fail again… this is why Pakistan has never been the number one team in cricket.

Posted by Nikhil on (October 1, 2012, 20:13 GMT)

Its simple logic. Normally, Pakistan progress with each match extremely. Always, its worse to best, now it is obviously opposite :)

Posted by Umar Arbar on (October 1, 2012, 20:13 GMT)

Pakistan does not play aggressive cricket anymore. In the nineties we beat India because we were the aggressive side. even in those days our team used to slump in the batting just like they do today. The difference was that we played with aggression. We took the attack to the Indians throat. If we failed in our batting we used to bowl like maniacs and fight until the last breath. Nowadays it looks like we do not even try. The players body languages show it all. Hafeez has not got enough experience to cope in such pressure as a captain. Arafat is not threatening as a bowler or a batsman. Razzaq should have been given more time to play. Afridi should be used as a (t20) pinch hitter at number 3. He has been caught on the boundary in the last matches, if he comes in during the powerplay he has more chance of scoring runs as fielding restrictions apply. We need to play cricket like real men. India has nothing that we do not have apart from Kohli (even he has weaknesses). Fix up Pakistan!!

Posted by salman maqsood on (October 1, 2012, 20:05 GMT)

i must say there PAK won a great toss against IND but i think they lose it. bcoz Hafeez and PAK Coach didn't know the coniditions in Colombo very well. Previously record must keep in mind before any decision. Batting first is the worst decision.

Posted by Raks on (October 1, 2012, 20:02 GMT)

Only 2 objections to Kamrans analysis. As mentioned by Jay.Why bring similarities from war in sports? Second what Vijay Motilal Rampersuad said - My Kamran - Indian decent bowlers dismissed 3 others teams within 20 overs. No 1 T20 team within 15 overs. Your best T20 bowlers could not match that. They are getting worse every match. Specially someone called Boom Boom. Learn to take losses to India sportingly rather than saying India won because your team performed poorly and not that India were far superior.

Posted by viru on (October 1, 2012, 19:56 GMT)

@Sumit oh man what can i say, that was a brilliant reply bro whoever you are....some people just dont understand cricket and one can in the world can compare anyone with Great Sachin Tendulkar. but i still believe Sir Don Bradman is the greatest of them all......before ind pak match dhoni was on my haters list..the obvious reason is my name(viru).huge the last 2 world cups he was coincidentally injured out of the world cups, so funny only because our captain has to make way for his pets vijay and jadeja....we all what happened....and this is the first match viru played in super eights in 3 world cups.....i hope u all understood what i'm trying to say....sometimes presence os some particular player can be a huge bonus in the team...and he has the greatest strike rate in indian team...i hope sehwag clicks in the next game....and it will get us a win for sure and and place in semis after two huge super 8s failures......

Posted by jazim hussain on (October 1, 2012, 19:52 GMT)

Pakistan lost their match when they elected to bat after winning the toss,What i can say is that it was a poor leadership and ill management. The team management kept all-rounder razzaq for warming the bench. yasir arafat is doing nothing but he is still in the eleven it is a bizzare.India played according to plan and they bagged the game at the end. when gambhir went to pavillion in the very first over i thought here we go!!!!!! but instead of attacking opposition he kept on counting the run rate.Pakistan managament has to think twice about their playing eleven against aussie before entering the erena...

Posted by SAMIR PARIKH on (October 1, 2012, 19:42 GMT)

Firstly I should appriciate Mr. Abbasi for a wonderful article. Secondly all pakistani fans are angry on there team who loose against INDIA, however it would be me too if India would had loose against pakistan. However, today I was seeing Abdul Kadir on Tv show where he said a good thing that let media and news agency not follow cricketers and team where the mistakes where done, let them concentrate on plans to win on other match. I think so its better for team captain and management decide whom to play and whom to not. best of luck to both teams ... SAMIR.

Posted by Salman Shakeel Leghari on (October 1, 2012, 19:37 GMT)

Very well thought article Kamran, Your suggested changes for Pak's next match are extremely positive but I am dead sure, Hafeez does not have enough guts to carry it through.

On the other hand, game against India was a very poor effort by Pakistan. India's batting is thorough professional and they handle pressure too well.

As a Pakistani, Virat is my favorite batsman , true professional who just bats too well.

Pak has very bleak chances of beating Aussies which are in supreme form.

I think, its India and Australia who will make through!

Posted by Srikant on (October 1, 2012, 19:30 GMT)

Taking nothing away from Pakistan ,they play fearless cricket..but somehow froze yesterday..I still feel Pakistan could go all the way coz they have the best bowlers In Ajmal,Raza,Afridi...It's just the batting that needs to be looked upon...They need to workout a tactic which was followed in the 1992 wc... Bat till the 15th over with as many wickets as possible and go for the kill in the next 5..pak bowlers will do the rest...of course this will depend on the situation.. Kohli batted well yesterday,his style of play against Ajmal was worth watching...especially the cut shot to the boundary and the straight six off the doorsra was indeed commendable...

Posted by Rahulbose on (October 1, 2012, 19:16 GMT)

The trigger was simple.India through better funds and training are producing professional cricketers who are less likely to make basic mistakes even when playing under pressure. Pakistan on the other hand still deal in raw natural talent with a dollop of lack of basic discipline and training. And as the talent is no longer at a Wasim Akram or a Saeed Anwar level, they end up losing.

Posted by abd on (October 1, 2012, 19:16 GMT)

drop gul, afridi, arafat, give razaq, shafiq, tanvir a chance. drop HAFEEZ! bad captain

Posted by Rahulbose on (October 1, 2012, 19:16 GMT)

The trigger was simple.India through better funds and training are producing professional cricketers who are less likely to make basic mistakes even when playing under pressure. Pakistan on the other hand still deal in raw natural talent with a dollop of lack of basic discipline and training. And as the talent is no longer at a Wasim Akram or a Saeed Anwar level, they end up losing.

Posted by Salman Shakeel Leghari on (October 1, 2012, 19:13 GMT)

Very well thought article Kamran, Your suggested changes for Pak's next match are extremely positive but I am dead sure, Hafeez does not have enough guts to carry it through.

On the other hand, game against India was a very poor effort by Pakistan. India's batting is thorough professional and they handle pressure too well.

As a Pakistani, Virat is my favorite batsman , true professional who just bats too well.

Pak has very bleak chances of beating Aussies which are in supreme form.

I think, its India and Australia who will make through!

Posted by Mudit Shukla on (October 1, 2012, 18:57 GMT)

It wasn't sachin's six of shoaib, i think it was the tournament at Toronto where we first realized that we can beat pakistan...after that javed miandad's six had crushed our self was ganguly's performance with bat and ball that we won 4-0 or 4-1, i don't remember....since then we have mercilessly beaten pakistan both in PAKISTAN and in their safe haven's like Sharjah....just remember sehwag crushing pakistan at multan....wish this could continue forever.....we dont want any trophy as ling as our team continues to humilate pakistan....

Posted by Hiren Doshi on (October 1, 2012, 18:53 GMT)

Pakistan now consoling themselves that the warm up match win was revenge taken for WC losses in 1992, 1996,1999 ,2003,2007,2011,2012 and NOW 2015 is breaking news. The number of points Pakistan won in this match was equal to the number of runs Shahid Afridi scored.Seeing the the reaction of Dav Whatmore and the rest of Pak squad on the bench after the warm up win showed their desperation ? Its as if they have won the tournament itself.Hopefully to keep fans of Pakistan happy and interested , BCCI/ICC will allocate a warm up match to Pakistan in 2015 worldcup so they can win and take their revenge like they did this year.

Posted by Mayur Porecha on (October 1, 2012, 18:50 GMT)

Another revenge match for Pakistan in 2015 coming up- Sorry for delay once more ;) from Indian fan. Pakistani supporters favorite slogan over the years Just before 1996 World cup QF was: "Time to revenge our defeat of 1992.Indian win is fluke" Then before 1999 : "Time to revenge our defeat of 1992, 1996" Then before 2003 : "Time to revenge our defeat of 1992, 1996,1999" Then before 2007 T20 both matches : "Time to revenge our defeat of 1992, 1996,1999 ,2003" Then before WC2011 : "Time to revenge our defeat of 1992, 1996,1999 ,2003,2007" Then before T20 WC2012 : "Time to revenge our defeat of 1992, 1996,1999 ,2003,2007,2011" Now before 2015 its almost : "Time to revenge our defeat of 1992, 1996,1999 ,2003,2007,2011,2012" The list just keeps growing. Cheers &Best of luck guys for 2015.

Difference is Pakistan treats it as war as evident from your article while India treats it as must win sports match and that's why they handle pressure better.

Posted by CricinfoUser on (October 1, 2012, 18:47 GMT)

Whenever India has run into Pakistan in a World cup tournament ,Pakistan has lost the game and usually the cup. In 1992 rain saved them from elimination and they managed to win the cup . In 2009 ,India got knocked out or else the T2009 World champions would have been different because a India- Pak SF was on the cards , had India not been bounced of by others. Rain has always been a lucky charm for Pakistan and if it rains tomorrow both matches, Pakistan will again sneak into the SF and win the tournament.

Posted by Ajit on (October 1, 2012, 18:45 GMT)

Another trigger for the shift of psychological balance was Sourav Ganguly led 4-1 rout of Pakistan at Canada !

Posted by Muralichucks on (October 1, 2012, 18:41 GMT)

Muralist chucks , so does Ajmal , so does bhajji ,so does Ashwin. They do differently , that is all

Posted by George on (October 1, 2012, 18:12 GMT)

Pakistan has to remove oldie afraid.he is a spent force.hafeez made the mistake of wanting to play the anchor role without rotating the strike. Ajmal was not effective enough.

Posted by babar on (October 1, 2012, 17:30 GMT)

There's no international cricket being played for the last many years; the domestic setup has been tinkered so many times in the last decade which has taken out competitiveness. I remember watching PIA vs HBL or NBP vs UBL matches in early 90's and they were really competitive. The product of last decade is just playing on natural flair whether it is the case of Muhammad Aamir or Umar Akmal.

But in spite of all that, players like Imran Nazir and Afridi as a batsman have played so much international cricket that they should have learnt by now.

Last but not least Pak cricket got it all wrong by 1) Batting first 2) Not opening with Nasir 3) Sending Afridi up the order 4) Not selecting Junaid Khan 5) Selecting Imran Nazir again 6) Sending Umar Akmal at no-7

When we won Asia cup Aizaz Cheema and Hammad Azam played wonderfully well in pressure they should have been given confidence and brought along the team.

Btw one thing Pak team got right not selecting Abdul Razzaq :)

Posted by Laxman on (October 1, 2012, 16:56 GMT)

Although India Played great, i thought that the Pakistani Players were too tensed yesterday.. Yuvraj may have bowled well, but he kept bowling short, any other team would have hit him for sixes.. I dont think there is any mental blockage neither do i think pakistan cant compete with top teams.. They are a very good T20 Side.. But at times they dont show the intent, and this happens a lot.. On a given day, they would just destroy you on another day they just implode... Although they are improving, they still need to learn to play aggressive cricket, not passive cricket... I felt they left Ajmal too late.. Should have got him in early.. And the captain kept setting Defensive fields.. But then again they never had the score to set attacking fields.. Its high time that batsman start taking more responsibility.. One bad match and u will be out.. Love to see India vs Pak Final

Posted by JOGINDER SHARMA 2007 on (October 1, 2012, 16:54 GMT)

3 tips for pak to win against india...

1. bring back there (ill)famous umpires of 1970's and 80's. 2. dont tell the pak players that they are playing in world cup 3. organize the match in sharjah..

hope this might produce desired results

Posted by B S Kumar on (October 1, 2012, 16:51 GMT)

A wonderful article, and seems to sum up even elements that cannot be measured. Thank you Mr. Abbasi. However fun it may be as Indian cricket fans, to watch India turn up in these key encounters against Pakistan, many of us would like much more even contests. Just not fun watching one team, any team, have a dominant hold over proceedings. Pakistan is a very exciting and capable side and that's who I hope will win in any game India are not playing in. We don't want them going to sleep and be timid. There is a lot of history between the two sides but really, those are old times. We're no longer biting each other, did anybody notice?

Posted by sumit on (October 1, 2012, 16:51 GMT)

@Mohammad Nayeemuddin Pakistan has a long list of players who are/were more talented than Sachin Tendulkar. Inzamam was the first. The long list includes the likes of Imran Nazir,Imran Farhat and Salman Butt, just to name a few.Now ofcourse, you have added Umar Akmal.Well done! A team with over a dozen Tendulkars.

Posted by Jay on (October 1, 2012, 16:37 GMT)

Dear Mr. Abbasi: I don't question your analysis; but where is the need for deploying these many war metaphors--i.e.booty, looting, white flag, enemy, put to the sword, blade?

Posted by Karim on (October 1, 2012, 16:17 GMT)

Very well summed up Kamran. As you point out, the pyschological balance shifted some years ago and Pakistan will not be able to wrestle it back with the likes of timid types such as Hafeez at the helm. From the outset, I've said that he's not captaincy material and this was proved conclusively in the match against India. He is not a leader of men. The Pak players' body-language when they came out to field was not one that we would have associated with Wasim, Waqar and the rest. Quite apart from the batsmen, the bowlers who were always one edge we held over India, now lack the aggression and firepower to intimidate batsmen : look at Umar Gul, when he gets hit for boundaries his reaction is resignation or a rueful smile instead of anger or a glare. Unless and until they get that fire back, they won't win anything in limited overs presuure games. And one may also well ask, if the Misbah-Mohsin combination was working so well, Whatmore die we need?

Posted by Sachin on (October 1, 2012, 16:10 GMT)

First thing we both Pakistani's and Indian cricket fans to learn is not to change our faith in team after every match result.I mean after a win we use to forgive every mistake and wrong doing and after a lose we totally dismiss them I am an Indian and pakistan is my 2nd fev team in cricket world.Time has come for us to get over with this enemy crap. Another thing I miss from pakistani team is the attitude of Waqar , wasim bhai , Amir sohel and others . I used to follow every Pak match when they were in team . Because that was the pakistani team capable of doing things against egoistic Australia and England what India could never do , its World class Fast bowling and good batsman against bouncy pitches

I hope Pakistan will recover from this downtime and will find same talents as it has in past :) Keep going India and wishes for Pakistan :)

Posted by Farhan on (October 1, 2012, 16:09 GMT)

As a cricket player myself i cant understand why Razzaq is sitting out of the team and my question is what are the feilding coaches are doing with the team. Terrible terrible display of feilding in each and every match also i dont see any improvement in Kamran Akmal and as a Nation we are hyper Nation we only won one warm up game against India we were dancing up and down. I think Australia or West Indies deserve this time.

Posted by Akbar on (October 1, 2012, 16:07 GMT)

Strongly agreed & I think they should bring in Razzaq for Yasir & how about bringing in an additional batsmen, maybe Asad Shafiq for Afridi or Raza Hassan!

Posted by Kam on (October 1, 2012, 15:59 GMT)

Hafeez should be known as the "Nutty Professor", this isn't the first and unfortunately will not be last time we see such a shambolic performance from a team lead by him. Afridi was leading the One day & T20 side well until Ijaz Butt put his oar in. Had Afridi been kept on as captain his performance and that of the team's would certainly have been better.

Posted by Iyer on (October 1, 2012, 15:15 GMT)

It was not Sachin's six of Shoaib, but it was Venkatesh Prasad's clean up of Aamir Sohail's wickets in Bangalore shifted the momentum towards India's favor in big matches. The next comes to my memory was Miandad's failure in the game when he jumped up and down like a monkey out of frustration.

Posted by Kams on (October 1, 2012, 15:09 GMT)

Well, against India, Pakistan can be truly labelled as chokers for many years now. They huffed and puffed really. Leaving Razzaq out and Arafat bowling one over with nothing special with bat was painful to watch for Pakistan supporters. Team selection criteria is above us all. Misbah after all is not bad in limited over matches. Plus he's a cool head in difficult situations. Over reliance and being over enthusiastic about Saeed Ajmal means that poor performances by other bowlers are being swept under the carpet by the team management. M.Akram as bowling coach is not a good choice, he could not even make Gul bowl a decent over throughout. I think instead of coaches the players need a psychologist.

Posted by Sid on (October 1, 2012, 15:09 GMT)

It's high time everyone realize that lots of players in the team should go away for ever. Shoaib Malik, Shahid Afridi, Kamran Akmal,Imran Nazir, Abdur Razzaq they all should retire or just go away for ever. We have players like Asad, Hammad, Junaid, Ahmed Shezad sitting out for no reason. If Umer Akmal is our best talent than he needs to bat up the order and if he does not have the temperament he needs to be rested for few series so he can develop that kind of temperament. Hafeez as a captain, cant say much as he is too iffy also. His batting technique is flawed big time and you can just compare him when he is playing with Nasir Jamshed. Imran Nazir is a tested and total failure, I see no logic for him to be in the team. He can only score against the weaker teams and they to have to drop his catches at 1.

Posted by Yasir Saleem on (October 1, 2012, 15:07 GMT)

The shift in power has to do alot with changing Pakistan cricket culture. In 80s, 90s Pakistan was a solid side believing in specialist skills more than bit and pieces hollow skills.

Pakistan obsession with allrounders in last 15 years has lead to mediocre side where 3-4 slots are filled by players who does not have any fundamental skills.

Afridi, Razaq, S Malik, Hafeez, Yasir all of them are not exceptional at any one skill, yet they playing for such a long time in all three formats, this has rotten the circketing culture, we nomore produce quality Batsman or Bowlers but medicore all rounders.

Lot of Pakistani fans are mistaken by calling Imran, Wasim as allrounders so we should invest in that concept. But the reality is they were not allrounders but world class bowlers, their bowling skill was way better than their batting skills, the same is true for Kallis, Freddy even Watson (who is a much better batsman than bowler).

Posted by Fancy_a_Flutter on (October 1, 2012, 15:06 GMT)

Pakistan IMPLODED again ! WE SHALL RETURN (in Dec.) to prove it all wrong !

Posted by StopthisConstantCrying on (October 1, 2012, 14:43 GMT)

PPer's think only their country can play "cricket" and others are just teams who are only qualified to play street crickets and make up numbers at ICC tournaments. However based on that logic Pakistan should have won more cups than any other country but that does not seem to be the case with even India winning more Worldcups than Pakistan.Pakistan fans like to call their team unpredictable and mercurial team. They say "On their day they can beat anyone" . A classic example of living in self denial and trying to paint a different picture to ignore a fact that even Bangladesh and Ireland can also beat anyone on their day and they are usually called minnows. Perhaps inconsistent is word you guys need to learn.

Posted by Vijay Motilal Rampersuad on (October 1, 2012, 14:41 GMT)

It was an awesome performance from Indian team whose so called trundlers bowled magnificiently .Nobody now handles pressure in ODI/T20 games as well as Indians (or Aus/Sa IPl players) or perhaps all players lucky enough to be considered part of IPL. Live practice in IPL tight contests over last 5 years made the Indians/IPL players handle pressure better because they have gone through the routine of handling pressure cooker situations umpteem times in close high quality IPL matches against best of worlds bowlers and batters who are distributed evenly over the various franchisee's as oversea's signings.The positive impact of IPL experience could be also seen in the improvement of WI T20 side as well as SA/AUS/SL sides. India is d only team who bowled out their oppnt thrice in 4 matches -Afgan, Eng, Pak while your esteemed fast bowlers and world class spinners did not complete this feat even once and you guys call Indians trundlers and what not :)

Posted by Jawed Saleem on (October 1, 2012, 14:41 GMT)

It’s no time for “Shouldas-Wouldas-Couldas” ! Right now Pakistan need to erase the memory (of yet another FIASCO against India), reorganize/regroup and “ALL SYSTEMS GO” to derail the “Australian Juggernaut”. The professor + think tanks must chalk out the set piece/strategy to engineer/orchestrate the early removal of “THE PLAYER OF THE TOURNAMENT (RED-HOT Watson)” and get into the Australian middle order. Australian middle order is untested/untried/inexperienced – every chance of crumbling “UNDER COSH” ! Pakistan should take heart from series victory in Emirates and endeavor to gain decisive victory (to avoid perms). Australians have been riding crest of wave so far – early jolts/wickets will find them in an unknown territory ! “IT’S ALL SYSTEMS GO - Pakistan, You have done before” !

Posted by fhs on (October 1, 2012, 14:40 GMT)

Good article Mr. Abbasi!. I think it is a mental toughness issue for Pakistan for the games against India. They took too much pressure in this game. Hafeez was clearly under lot of pressure which put a negative impact to the entire team. India played a better cricket and deserved to win. Congrats to India! I support Team Hafeez and wish them a good luck in the game against Aussies. They need to relax!

Posted by Harshal Bhogle on (October 1, 2012, 14:38 GMT)

People especially Pakistani were mocking Balaji for his pace. Talk now nah. His IPL performance showed he had variations to outfox even good batters from world and your batters are far away from bieng considered that. Someone had commented that he had not revealed his bag of tricks in warm up game and he was made fun of. Balaji answered it today. Talk nah haters. Indian selectors knew SL conditions and picked up right bowler and did not go for speed like Yadav, Varun. When it swings it does not matter if it is at 120kph or 140kph and speed is over rated.Win could also be attributed to fact that India knows its limitations, does not underestimate opposition, plans correctly within own limitations and executes those plans with silent belief absorbing the pressure succesfully and overcoming it without making big baseless arrogant war cries before each game. That overconfidence in own bowling abilities helps India because luck favors brave and not the arrogant.

Posted by Monish Mohtaj on (October 1, 2012, 14:30 GMT)

akistan fans overrate faast bowling as solution to take Indian wkts , but Indian know the faster they come faster they can be disptached to boundary. Ajmal is good but not as great for Indian batters because they have tamed Warne before so comparitively Ajmal is well nothnig but a schoolboy bowler who got lucky once or twice with Tendulkar. A warm up victory set forth celebrations like they had won T20 cup and that is when Indians knew how much Pakistan was desperate to win and it is easy to beat desperate people becos they make more mistakes. Indian trundlers (so called) bowled to make sure those mistakes were committed and for that 120kph was enough.Winning may not be everything, but losing has little to recommend it. A battle is won by the side that is absolutely determined to win not the side that is overconfident , has no strategy and underestimates enemy blindly ,beleiving that victory is theirs for taking, all they have to do is showup. Best of luck for next revenge match

Posted by Ali on (October 1, 2012, 14:20 GMT)

I use to be, and still am, a big and crazy fan of pakistan cricket but slowly slowly due to consistent dissapointments am thinking of giving up on Pak Cricket forever. The things that have annoyed me most during this tournament are Abdul RAZZAQ's constant exclusion, Afridi's consistentcy of fails in batting and Hafeez's selfishness to bat and ball all the time except when the team is in trouble he takes himself out so he doesn't get the blame... BTW Great article and am a very big fan of our work, if only PCB, Selector's, captain and pakistan coach were to read ur articles and these comments then Pakistan may not be as bad as they are at the moment.

Posted by Imran on (October 1, 2012, 14:20 GMT)

First of all captain should be lead as a captain not a school teacher. rather than be more emotional with india should be Practical. in available option we have to see what is our strong side between Bating and bowling and same the opposition and as well the provious record. even though if your self believe is so high you should have to see all the aspect.just last match with them we had a good chase and why they change the decision. it was a very very wrong decision and poor capitancy.

Posted by Yasser on (October 1, 2012, 14:14 GMT)

Complete shambles.Hafeez should not even be in the team let alone captaining this side. PCB keeps promoting the "yes men" at the expense of highly talented players. The biggest travesty of late has been Nasir Jamshed kept out of the team for 3 years while Farhat got countless chances.Selectors have no vision and do not have an eye for potential.Ahmed Shehzad should have been in this team.Razzaq has also been a big victim. ON what basis was Junaid Khan not taken to Srilanka? My team for the next match, batting order wise, would be: K Akmal, A Razzaq, N Jamshed, U Akmal, S Malik,A Shafiq, S Afridi, M Hafeez, U GUl, Ajmal, Raza.

Posted by Dark.Matter on (October 1, 2012, 14:13 GMT)

Watson and Warner played spin of ashwin and narine very well. AUS is not that AUS who played in UAE in recent past. Pak spin bowlers are a little off color in this tournament. Ajmal is not in top wicket takers list. hafeez and afridi did not bowled well. fast bowling is alarmingly pathetic. we can compare our fast bowling to bangladesh. so keeping this scenario in mind, Pak should pack their bags because another thrashing is on cards .

Posted by Badrinarayan on (October 1, 2012, 13:57 GMT)

I agree with the comments of Abbasi. When they play with India, they should not brood over the past. They should play their natural game. But definitely India deserves a pat

Posted by Ashish on (October 1, 2012, 13:53 GMT)

I think before Sachin's six there were 22 runs in an a Waqar Younis over by Ajay Jadeja and Venkatesh Prasad's send-off to Aamir Sohail which can be called as triggers.

Posted by Ismail Merchant on (October 1, 2012, 13:22 GMT)

Inzamam used to keep Misbah out . Misbah could only stage ace back after the exit of Inzamam . Hafeez is doing the same with Abdul Razaq . Imran Nazir should not have opened India . He should not be in theTeam .. He cannot last more than an over against any side . His techniques not right . A genuine fast bowler like Sami would be useful against India . They handlle spin very welll but are uncimfortable against fast bowling . Hafeez as a Captain appears to be a poor tactician . PCB urgently needs to get rid of deadwood in the Team and needs to focus on Team Building .

Posted by Uday on (October 1, 2012, 13:13 GMT)

Pakistan have struggled to replace the big men in the middle order - Inzi, Yousuf and Younis. At present the batsmen are either talented hitters who don't know what to do when things arent going their way (Nazir, Kamran, Afridi, etc) or calmer batsmen who cant get out of their shell (Hafeez, Malik). There is no one who is confident enough (other than Umar) to play according to the situation. India bowled better than they have been given credit for, but that attack should have been taken for more runs. Pakistan didnt bowl badly - credit has to be given to Kohli and Sehwag for two very good innings

Posted by adam on (October 1, 2012, 13:02 GMT)

I echo your sentiments mr. abbasi...i stated these very obvious changes to my brother while watching the game. shoaib malik doesnt deserve a place in the squad if he isnt playing as a bowling all-rounder. yasir arafat is NOT an all-rounder (wheres hammad azam?)and razzaq is the better option in this situation. i dont think hafeez is smart enough to think about run rates...he just ran out of ideas and was hoping the batsman would give their wickets away. its not about the loss.....its the way you lose that hurts the most....THINK TANK? I dont think so...

Posted by Mohammad Nayeemuddin on (October 1, 2012, 12:59 GMT)

Umar Akmal should open the innings for Pakistan in shorter format of the game and play at No.4 in test. He is more talented than Sachin Tendulkar, but if only Pakistan management could realize and utilize. Karman Akmal is most effective as an opener or in the late middle order. His best has come in the lower middle order:at No.6 or No. 7, and as an opener, that is at the start of the innings or late in the innings, but strange enough, he bats in the middle order, where he has failed more than succeeded. Asad Shafiq has already played some very valuable knocks in the recent past, including the one in semi-final of the world cup against India, and some test matches when his contribution actually won the game for Pakistan. He sits out, while Malik and Nazir gets a nod in. Yasir Arafat could not take single for the entire over, but off the last ball denying Umar Akmal the strike, wast'g a complete over except 1 boundary. What is Yasir Arafat doing in the team when Razzak is warming d bench

Posted by Asad Ali Khan on (October 1, 2012, 12:51 GMT)

There is too much deadwood in PakistannTeam . For ODIs AndT 20s Afridi , Shoaib Malik , Afridi , Imran Nazir and Misbah need to be retired . Younis Khan needs to be told he is in the Test Team only as a batsman . He needs to score more runs per innings otherwise he should retire ore will be retired . The PCB should focus on Team building .

Posted by Taps on (October 1, 2012, 12:46 GMT)

I think Hafeez is doing good as a captain.I don't understand why Razzaq is not playing.Supposedly the best all-rounder. Already Pak lost Azhar Mahmood.Now Razzaq also going same line.I was worried when I found Gambir got out (So you know who I was supporting) and I thought, here we go.. Hafeez will attack now all-guns blazing but to surprise, he just went to defense. Also I don't understand why Pak went with all Spinners where as in last match, Aussies showed what pace can do to India and you have SAMI and all seating in the bench.. And if you know Indian bowling is weak, I think Pak should have batted second.. They lost the plot..

Posted by Mohammed Merchant on (October 1, 2012, 12:40 GMT)

A good rightly summarized the Hafiz state of mind.There are two reasons for Pakistan defeat.first two early umpire decision one of Nazir and other of Nasir goes in India favour and second Pakistan poor fielding.Umpire decisions made Pakistan batsmen to play safe.One of the factor which also affected defeat is poor captainsip. he should have started bowling with Raza from other end since our fast bowlers are not effective in this tournament.We have to include Asad Shafiq to strengthen batting in place Yaseer Arfat. Hafiz should come down the batting order.Razzaq should be given a chance in place of Nazir.Batting order should be Nasir,Kamran,Asad Shafiq,Umer Akmal,Shoaib,Hafiz,Razzq,Afridi,Gul ,Ajmal and Raza.Nazir was failure against Australia in Dubai.Moreover Australian are very professional. We beat them so we should go with aggrression.Good luck and be bold.l

Posted by Hassan Farooqi on (October 1, 2012, 12:34 GMT)

Pakistan was expected to lose. Even if they are #1 and India #last, they would lose to India in any world cup in any format, and it has nothing to do with bad luck. Pakistan won toss on a pitch that had nothing to offer to bowlers, and India had almost no quality bowlers, yet they scored 129. Then pitch was suppose to finally spin and Pakistan had 5 quality spinners. Yet they lost one sided. Why? Because it was a world cup and they were supposed to lose to India. I wont give a hoot if Pakistan lifts the cup. They lost the one match that mattered.

Posted by stn on (October 1, 2012, 12:31 GMT)

My question to all the readers is.... When was the last time Hafeez scored more than 10 runs without taking a chance???

Posted by Dr. talha on (October 1, 2012, 12:28 GMT)

I have repeatedly said in ur article Hafeez is the WORST cricketer ever to have played the game for so long. I dont agree with u that it was a brave decision to bat first. It was a STUPID decision. So far in the super eights, except Eng vs WI, all the teams batting 2nd have won. So y on earth did hafeez wanted to bat first, when indians had a plan of chasing. He has run away from bowling as well. And his batting was as usual horrible!!

Posted by Mani on (October 1, 2012, 12:08 GMT)

If there is ONE reason to pinpoint why Pakistan lost, I'd say Hafeez. Such poor and demoralizing captaincy. There must be consequences. Heads must roll. Younis Khan has to be reinstated as captain simply because there is no one else. Misbah is too defensive and Post Wasim, only Younis stands out. In T20, age is not an issue as seen in various T20 leagues. Younis can stay captain till a suitable replacement comes around and is groomed.

Posted by Nadeem Khan on (October 1, 2012, 12:07 GMT)

I wonder how much Hafeez knew that his team is in serious danger of getting eliminated if they lose against India. Now the scenario is that, Pak will have to beat Aussies and still hope that SA either wins against India, or at least, not lose badly. I think India is in the driving seat now. They will know exactly what they require, since they will play their match later. On a funnier note, SA might sneak in, ahead of both India and Pak.

Posted by GVR1965 on (October 1, 2012, 12:00 GMT)

In the past, especially against India, Pakistan used to win from the brink of defeat, almost continuously. If we look at the secret - they treated the match like a war against India. Such was the attitue of the Pakistan Players- Even ordinary cricketers performed exceedingly well. So this is more to do with the attitude of the players than form, age, fitness or efficiency.

Posted by Omar Hussain on (October 1, 2012, 12:00 GMT)

Forget about the past, it is done and over.India played better on the day and won.Afridi is a spent force,sorry.We should surely recall Razzaq now.Overall India have done better because they have more confidence and ABILITY.We got to face the facts and use our resources shrewdly.

Posted by Omar Hussain on (October 1, 2012, 12:00 GMT)

Forget about the past, it is done and over.India played better on the day and won.Afridi is a spent force,sorry.We should surely recall Razzaq now.Overall India have done better because they have more confidence and ABILITY.We got to face the facts and use our resources shrewdly.

Posted by kannan on (October 1, 2012, 11:57 GMT)

Mr Abbasi, well written, but why do you refer to India as your enemy ( "first sighting of the enemy"). I am an Indian, but pakistan is my 2nd fave team, as it would be with millions of Indians. We play the same brand of cricket and if India is out of reckoning, i barrack for Pakistan. On this occassion, India were better. Surely, Pakistan will recover form this and recoup.

Posted by Jail lank on (October 1, 2012, 11:53 GMT)

As a Pakistan cricket fan I am absulotly dejected even I could not sleep I am an afghan from prawn I was praying for a win but the team let me and millions down I am totaly speechless hope for a victory against Australia

Posted by Mohsin Khan on (October 1, 2012, 11:51 GMT)

Hafeez "The Professor" has finally shown us how smart he really is..from baffling selections to tactical blunders..nothing has been impressive about his captaincy so far..and against India he was totally clueless...I believe he is being given too much credit when it is said he was defensive because he was calculating net run rates etc..I really don't think he is THAT SMART!!!

Posted by ripon on (October 1, 2012, 11:46 GMT)

Pakistanis are very lazy & they never play like professionally. They have no match winner batsman like virat Kohli , Shane watson , kumar sanga. They want to rely on luck. They depend on their bowling attac. But their bowling attack is not so strong like australia , srilank , england & india. Pakistan have no quality to qualify the semifinal.

Posted by shakeel on (October 1, 2012, 11:44 GMT)

abbas bhai 100% right

Posted by Noman Aziz on (October 1, 2012, 11:43 GMT)

How about Razzaq in place of Afridi? Afridi has been disappointing for some time. Cant take wickets cant score. May be he needs a bit of rest. Hafeez should have bowled Ajmal out in the first 10 overs but he kept his overs until it was too late.

Posted by Asim Khan on (October 1, 2012, 11:31 GMT)

A good one. If a team is wining it doesn't mean that the combination is good. Yasir Arafat don't deserve to be in the team how can he be given preference over Razaq. Why Asad Shafiq is not playing? I would replace Shoaib Malik with him. We need specialist. I know the required level of skill in T20 is not that high however you have to take this version of the game also very seriously. Poor decision making from Hafiz, full respect to him however if you have only 128 on the board, the only way should have been to attack with a full force and take wickets...

Anyway good luck to Pakistan and hope that Hafiz and management learn the lessons from this match...

Posted by Abbassi on (October 1, 2012, 11:13 GMT)

@M S Reddy - Osman Samiuddin writes for 'The National' nowadays. Look him up on google - the guy continues to write even more brilliant articles!

Posted by Ali on (October 1, 2012, 11:09 GMT)

..and what are coaches doing? Javed Miandad drawing a hefty paycheck for what? Whatmore we want more from you... and Fountain! if top team players can't be taught to catch and dive then please direct your coaching to under-19...

Posted by Abbasi on (October 1, 2012, 11:09 GMT)

Would've been nice had you praised the Indian cricket team instead of simply criticising Pakistan. It wasn't as if India won simply because of Pakistan's mistakes but they actually did play really good cricket!

Posted by Sarmad Siddiqui on (October 1, 2012, 11:02 GMT)

How much they will take to learn a attacking cricket. After winning a very lucky toss choose to bat 1st was showed the weakness of Pakistan team. Instead that India take the pressure of elimination Pakistan took the pressure. Pakistan wasn't cash the benefit of the Wicket in a very 1st over and there was no attacking field for new batsmen. There are Bating Bowling Fielding couches but in my opinion Pakistan need a psychotherapist.

Posted by Ali on (October 1, 2012, 11:01 GMT)

Hafeez only opens bowling when opposition is not big like Aussies, India, Sri Lanka or South Africa, why he keep imran nazir? so that Imran always gets out first and hafeez later and nobody blames him?

Posted by Subhan Butt on (October 1, 2012, 10:59 GMT)

mental block of Pakistan? maybe. ganguly explained better: 'in last 7-8 years, India have better handled the pressure at critical times. results have shown.'

Posted by Dilber Maseeh on (October 1, 2012, 10:59 GMT)

Spot on Abbasi. I hope they lose against the Aussies too if they dont bring in Razzaq. Thanks to Umar Gul's flukes last week otherwise we arent a super 8 team at all. Pathetic Eleven.

Posted by umair on (October 1, 2012, 10:58 GMT)

Dont knw what rehman malik said to hafeez and was a drama not a match.

Posted by Mohammed Baluch on (October 1, 2012, 10:57 GMT)

Isn't it at all possible that Pakistan does not have the skill levels to compete with the top teams, day in and day out? The pitches now in S.L. have become worn down, much like a fourth or fifth day pitch in a Test match. If you look at all the matches, the batsmen who are doing well are those who have good footwork and keep their eyes on the ball till the last second and even beyond - sort of Federesque and Rafa style when they are concentrating on the tennis ball. Jamshed, Imran, Kamran and Afridi just spot the line of the ball and swing their bats. This may work on a fresh pitch, but not with the conditions as they are now! Our only hope against Australia is to play Asad Shafiq -who has good footwork and keeps his eyes on the ball, and Razzak, who should be better than the very average Arafat - who only belongs to cricket at the club level. Even if we somehow manage to beat the Aussies, India will always know by how much they would need to beat qualify.

Posted by Pathiyal on (October 1, 2012, 10:50 GMT)

Hafeez should have rotated the strike thereby making sure that he retain his wicket. he had a few things to learn from this encounter. i was disappointed that team pakistan didnt offer a fight this time.

Posted by Shamshad Ali Khan on (October 1, 2012, 10:49 GMT)

Pakistan ,s chance. Was to win against India . They could not handle the stress of the situation well . The next match is against Australia the possible winner of the Tournament and a side way stronger than Pakistan .selecting a player like to play and worse to open the batting was a collossal mistake . Imran. Naziri,s technique is totally faulty . He cannot survive more than an over against first tier sides . His preference for Shoaib Malik over Abdul Razaq was a blunder . Most of the problems of the Pakistan Team were the creation of the Team Managment .

Posted by Omar on (October 1, 2012, 10:47 GMT)

Well said but will the Pak selectors oblige to your recommendations? My guess is never!

Posted by NURUL ISLAM on (October 1, 2012, 10:33 GMT)




Posted by Syed Osama Afaq on (October 1, 2012, 10:32 GMT)

I always look forward to read your articles. I agree with you on each and every point, that attacking was the only option Pakistan had if they really wanted to win.

On team mix, no matter what but Arafat has to go out for Abdul Razzaq.

Posted by M S Reddy on (October 1, 2012, 10:30 GMT)

I am an Indian and a big fan of Dr. Kamran Abbasi. I am an even bigger fan of Osman Samiuddin. I really miss his writings. Where has he dissappeared?

Posted by qadir on (October 1, 2012, 10:30 GMT)

why the hell are they taking current decision based on past experiences, as they went on to bat first because they failed to chase in world cup 2011 and world t20 2007. Isn't the coaching staff to be blamed for such ridiculous decisions, as; they were the one to do most of planning like either bat first or second or even who gone play at what position as the razzaq was must inclusion

Posted by sajjad murtaza on (October 1, 2012, 10:28 GMT)

Excellent summarization of Hafeez mentality in the game (which was POOR by every sense of the word). why on earth he wasn't playing shorts when we were 26 for 1 after 2 overs. I think part of his defensive batting was due to an explosive start from Afridi. knowing the politics in pakistani dressing room, Hafeez must have thought the way to secure his captaincy credentials is to stay there as much as he can, forgetting he is playing a 20 over game. As a pakistani supporter i dont mind losing to india but not until we fought for the game. Seems like pakistan lost the match before it actually started. SHAMBLES!!!

Posted by Adeeb on (October 1, 2012, 10:23 GMT)

Agree 1oo% with abbs Bhai , Pakistan need to play aggressively , well played India.

Posted by Nadeem Khan on (October 1, 2012, 10:23 GMT)

Looking at the past records, I was sure that they will not change the combination of the team that crawled their way towards victory against SOUTH AFRICA. That meant, they will insist with Yasir Arafat ahead of Razzaq.

Posted by vinay on (October 1, 2012, 9:57 GMT)

Very right, shifted from javed's 6 to Sachin's six

Posted by Rehan on (October 1, 2012, 9:28 GMT)

I agree with you Mr. Abbasi but knowing Pakistan... they will make only 1 change if at all they do .i.e. to bring in A Razzaq in place of Yasir Arafat. Its high time for our batsmen to deliver and play the game the way it should be played and not like street cricket.

Comments have now been closed for this article


Kamran Abbasi
Kamran Abbasi is an editor, writer and broadcaster. He was the first Asian columnist for Wisden Cricket Monthly and Kamran is the international editor of the British Medical Journal. @KamranAbbasi

All articles by this writer