Pakistan v Australia, 1st MCC Spirit of Cricket Twenty20, Edgbaston July 5, 2010

Umar soars as Pakistan win at last

It would be improper to term Umar's assault as audacious. It was instinctive, calculated, and plain confident
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"Bring them on!" was Umar Akmal's message to all comers as he demolished every Australian bowler on the day barring Shaun Tait. Not that he will lose sleep over that. Instead it is the Australians who will ponder over their pints how Umar singlehandedly picked Pakistan out of the gutter at 47 for 4 and hauled them into a position they never left for the rest of the evening.

It would be improper to term Umar's assault as audacious. It was instinctive, calculated, and plain confident. In the last year, a period in which his talent has flourished, Umar has been praised and condemned in equal measures: if he deserved the kudos for his aggressive attitude, cricketing pundits were ready to slap him for his injudicious shot selection during certain rush-of-the-blood moments. Fair enough. But take into account the fact that Umar is just 20, an age where the kite of freedom is always soaring.

Waqar Younis and Shahid Afridi - Pakistan's coach-captain pairing - do not, rightly, want to tether Umar's flight just yet and, instead, are willing to lend him the space to understand himself rather than shovel heaps of criticism onto his shoulders. Clearly such strong backing was one big reason that motivated Umar to perform the heroics on Monday in front of a boisterous crowd of 13,000 at Edgbaston, which was coloured entirely in Pakistani green colours.

It was a critical moment when Umar walked in at the fall of three quick wickets in the two overs after the Powerplay, including that of Afridi for a first-ball duck. Pakistan needed more than an antiseptic to heal the fast-spreading wounds. Not only did Umar arrest any further damage but in the company of an equally confident Shoaib Malik, quickly ran roughshod over the hapless Aussies. Judging that the straight boundary was the shortest and the safest route, Umar dashed out of the blocks to loft Steve Smith over the sight screen into the RES Wyatt stand. He had understood that the Aussie legspinner was not getting the ball to drift through the air and there was little point waiting for the ball to arrive.

But his most spectacular moment arrived against Dirk Nannes, who was returning to his second spell, having been carted for 20 in his first two overs. Umar understood the left-armer would try and angle a fuller delivery across the off stump, one of his strong points. But he was willing to hit inside out. Nannes, nervously playing in his first international since the World Twenty20 final in the Caribbean, started with a wide. Instinctively Umar's smartness came to the fore as scooped the next delivery, predictably fuller and straighter, neatly over the keeper for a fine boundary.

His strike-rate when he struck his third consecutive fifty - and second against Australia - was an astonishing 247. He was not going to relax and neither did he allow his partners to do the same. Despite his seniority Abdur Razzaq was given clear instructions, by Umar, not to go for the big hits. With a further eight overs to go (when Shoaib Malik departed) Umar realised that Pakistan couldn't afford to get carried away. Bravery, quick thinking, creativity, and leadership - Umar displayed all those qualities in equal measure at various moments of his short stay, which was only 31 balls long. Waqar put the finger on the button when he said Umar was on his way to big things if he could continue stay open to learning.

"He is probably the most talented cricketer I've seen in the last 15-20 years," Pakistan's coach said. "You really have to stop him from certain things which he really wants to do. But that's the way he is going to learn - he is only 20 and he has got heaps of time. He is a good learner, a good listener. He is up thereā€¦he is really talented."

Michael Clarke, who witnessed Umar frustrate the Australians during the World Twenty20 semifinals, couldn't agree more. "Played well. didn't he?" Clarke said. "Where he bats in the team the ball is a little bit older, so there is no swing. He is a very clean striker of the ball. The ground is not that big and he was hitting a couple of big sixes down breeze.

"But he has played really well in the last couple of times against us," Clarke added. "Hopefully we can get a few more wickets and get him on when the ball is a bit newer." But the Australian captain wasn't giving his young opponent enough credit for his talent: Umar had come in one-down at St Lucia and imposed himself without much sweat.

Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Percy_Fender on July 7, 2010, 14:19 GMT

    I am sure Umar Akmal, Md Aamer, Kamran and Shahid Afridi are definitely going to play in the next IPL. They have the talent and the consistency to do well for any team that they play for. There may be others also from Pakistan like Umar Gul and Abdul Razzaq. I am sure all the needless acrimony is behind us and that we are going to have some good 20/20 games without Lalit Modi.

  • Q72941 on July 7, 2010, 2:43 GMT

    Any time a good prospect appear on the horizon we all could feel the touch of class right from the beginning.

    I have been following Umar and Amir right from their 1st class cricket and man I was so enticed by both of their talent right from the start. The boys are special as anyone would attest just like in case of SRT, Sehwag, Watson, KP, Akram, Waqar, Warne, Steyn, etc. You could see them setting themselves apart from very good crowd.

    It gives me immense pleasure to witness the great making of the young talents. Operating like the manner they did against Aussies was a wonderful treat.

    Wishing them the best so they can entertain us to the top level in International or Whatever format of Cricket. All the best guys, Keep it coming.

  • on July 6, 2010, 14:25 GMT

    He is the best player pakistan could ever have ..... go fly umair ....

  • on July 6, 2010, 13:59 GMT

    He's got something about him which Imran instilled in the team which became a pack of legends. It was the calculated counter attacking, unafraid way of blistering the opposition. Umar Akmal has the right leader to nurture this on field arrogance.

  • on July 6, 2010, 13:33 GMT

    Clarke as any Australian did not accept that Umar didn't play a great innings. I don't know why these Aussie cricketers never accept they lost to a better team or the guy who destroyed their bowling attack.. They always say yea..boundaries are small, hit into the wind and the wind carried over the boundary. yeah.. true then why didn't u r batsmen not do the same..were the length of the boundaries changed when u ppl came in to bat? LET ME KNOW MICHAEL

  • Trapper439 on July 6, 2010, 13:24 GMT

    Can I just point out that the only reason people are commenting on how Clarke "wasn't giving his young opponent enough credit for his talent" is because the author said that (for reasons unknown of his own) in the article. All Clarke said was that Umar bats down the order and that conditions were favourable for batting. Guess what? Clarke also bats down the order, and sometimes does so in conditions favourable for batting. Clarke wasn't being "sore in defeat", he was just telling it like he saw it. This is yet another case of an Aussie captain saying one thing and opposing fans hearing something entirely different. It reminds me of the way Ponting always says after a defeat something along the lines of "Full credit to them, they played really well and we didn't play as well as we could have" and then always gets absolutely mauled by the media for his supposed ill-grace in the face of defeat. Don't believe everything you read.

  • factoryard on July 6, 2010, 12:55 GMT

    The last T20 outing between the aussies pakistan at the world cup, there were hardly anything to critisize even though I did constructively critisize Afridis captaincy. This time around I like it when he called on, his best bowler for the day, Amir to bowl the 15 over not giving the aussies any chance to get going. Afridi wasn't worried about the death overs like he did in the world cup. Fast learning skipper. The only worry I have with this team is the concentration of Butt, how can he not learn to depend on his batting partner when necessary.

  • msport on July 6, 2010, 12:47 GMT

    what is clarke doing in the team?nor he bowls nor he bats.Even if he bats in 20-20 he just waste balls n the team is gonna loose.kick him out ACA.Sad 2 see Michael Hussey under de captaincy of such poor t20 player the pressure is alwyz on his head.

  • REXYCP123 on July 6, 2010, 12:09 GMT

    HI GUYS I AM AN INDIAN YOU HAVE AN GREAT TALENT IN UR TEAM PLS PLS DONT WASTE THAT TALENT LIKE YOU PEOPLE DID TO IMRAN NAZIR SAVE HIM AND UMAR TEACH THE LESSON FOR CLARKE HE IS SAME AS ALL AUSSIE CAPTAIN DOESN'T PRAISE A TALENT CLARKE U R THE WASTE IN THAT AUSSIE T20 LINEUP GIVE THE CAPTANCY TO WHITE AND BRING IN AN ALLROUNDER THIS TEAM CAN BE GREAT AUSSIE TEAM LIKE THEY USED TO .....THEY ARE LOSING B'CAUSE OF CLARKE ............ USELESS CRICKETER I HAVE SEEN IN AUSSIE TEAM

  • on July 6, 2010, 11:58 GMT

    @ dsig3 will u like to see how many t20 or ODI tait has played, infact check the bowling stats for whole of the australian team, and no one might have pass even 20 ODI's except johnson. Try to prasie the world who perform, perhaps that is why John Howard is still yelling about his nomination and putting the blame of subcontinent for his non selection, australian i can see your era in cricket is gone, infact just try to protect the ASHES now, and i don't even think of getting in to quater finals of WC, depending how badly you are losing the games.

  • Percy_Fender on July 7, 2010, 14:19 GMT

    I am sure Umar Akmal, Md Aamer, Kamran and Shahid Afridi are definitely going to play in the next IPL. They have the talent and the consistency to do well for any team that they play for. There may be others also from Pakistan like Umar Gul and Abdul Razzaq. I am sure all the needless acrimony is behind us and that we are going to have some good 20/20 games without Lalit Modi.

  • Q72941 on July 7, 2010, 2:43 GMT

    Any time a good prospect appear on the horizon we all could feel the touch of class right from the beginning.

    I have been following Umar and Amir right from their 1st class cricket and man I was so enticed by both of their talent right from the start. The boys are special as anyone would attest just like in case of SRT, Sehwag, Watson, KP, Akram, Waqar, Warne, Steyn, etc. You could see them setting themselves apart from very good crowd.

    It gives me immense pleasure to witness the great making of the young talents. Operating like the manner they did against Aussies was a wonderful treat.

    Wishing them the best so they can entertain us to the top level in International or Whatever format of Cricket. All the best guys, Keep it coming.

  • on July 6, 2010, 14:25 GMT

    He is the best player pakistan could ever have ..... go fly umair ....

  • on July 6, 2010, 13:59 GMT

    He's got something about him which Imran instilled in the team which became a pack of legends. It was the calculated counter attacking, unafraid way of blistering the opposition. Umar Akmal has the right leader to nurture this on field arrogance.

  • on July 6, 2010, 13:33 GMT

    Clarke as any Australian did not accept that Umar didn't play a great innings. I don't know why these Aussie cricketers never accept they lost to a better team or the guy who destroyed their bowling attack.. They always say yea..boundaries are small, hit into the wind and the wind carried over the boundary. yeah.. true then why didn't u r batsmen not do the same..were the length of the boundaries changed when u ppl came in to bat? LET ME KNOW MICHAEL

  • Trapper439 on July 6, 2010, 13:24 GMT

    Can I just point out that the only reason people are commenting on how Clarke "wasn't giving his young opponent enough credit for his talent" is because the author said that (for reasons unknown of his own) in the article. All Clarke said was that Umar bats down the order and that conditions were favourable for batting. Guess what? Clarke also bats down the order, and sometimes does so in conditions favourable for batting. Clarke wasn't being "sore in defeat", he was just telling it like he saw it. This is yet another case of an Aussie captain saying one thing and opposing fans hearing something entirely different. It reminds me of the way Ponting always says after a defeat something along the lines of "Full credit to them, they played really well and we didn't play as well as we could have" and then always gets absolutely mauled by the media for his supposed ill-grace in the face of defeat. Don't believe everything you read.

  • factoryard on July 6, 2010, 12:55 GMT

    The last T20 outing between the aussies pakistan at the world cup, there were hardly anything to critisize even though I did constructively critisize Afridis captaincy. This time around I like it when he called on, his best bowler for the day, Amir to bowl the 15 over not giving the aussies any chance to get going. Afridi wasn't worried about the death overs like he did in the world cup. Fast learning skipper. The only worry I have with this team is the concentration of Butt, how can he not learn to depend on his batting partner when necessary.

  • msport on July 6, 2010, 12:47 GMT

    what is clarke doing in the team?nor he bowls nor he bats.Even if he bats in 20-20 he just waste balls n the team is gonna loose.kick him out ACA.Sad 2 see Michael Hussey under de captaincy of such poor t20 player the pressure is alwyz on his head.

  • REXYCP123 on July 6, 2010, 12:09 GMT

    HI GUYS I AM AN INDIAN YOU HAVE AN GREAT TALENT IN UR TEAM PLS PLS DONT WASTE THAT TALENT LIKE YOU PEOPLE DID TO IMRAN NAZIR SAVE HIM AND UMAR TEACH THE LESSON FOR CLARKE HE IS SAME AS ALL AUSSIE CAPTAIN DOESN'T PRAISE A TALENT CLARKE U R THE WASTE IN THAT AUSSIE T20 LINEUP GIVE THE CAPTANCY TO WHITE AND BRING IN AN ALLROUNDER THIS TEAM CAN BE GREAT AUSSIE TEAM LIKE THEY USED TO .....THEY ARE LOSING B'CAUSE OF CLARKE ............ USELESS CRICKETER I HAVE SEEN IN AUSSIE TEAM

  • on July 6, 2010, 11:58 GMT

    @ dsig3 will u like to see how many t20 or ODI tait has played, infact check the bowling stats for whole of the australian team, and no one might have pass even 20 ODI's except johnson. Try to prasie the world who perform, perhaps that is why John Howard is still yelling about his nomination and putting the blame of subcontinent for his non selection, australian i can see your era in cricket is gone, infact just try to protect the ASHES now, and i don't even think of getting in to quater finals of WC, depending how badly you are losing the games.

  • luv2smile on July 6, 2010, 11:39 GMT

    I hope he gets picked up in the IPL because he's probably the best batsman that has come out of Pakistan in a decade! The way he played against Australia, today was amazing! Pakistan were on the ropes at 47/4 and I thought that this game would be a 10/10 and not a 20/20! But he just keeps on growing as a batsman and he has a bit of Tendulkar and Gilchrist about him, in the way he takes the bowlers on and this automatically means that they were counter attacking and this puts the opposition under a lot of pressure!

  • ICCexpert.... on July 6, 2010, 11:24 GMT

    I am from England, Shame on Clarke for such remarks, he says Umar comes in to bat when the ball is old, doesnt he know that he came one down in the t20 semi final and yesterday came when Pak were 47 for 4 and he was there in the 7th over both times he blasted the aussie ducks, the ball was fresh, its simply grapes are sour for the Austrlain captain, they should replace him either with M. Hussey or White, Clarke has ho place in the side. Well played Umar Gul, and Umar Akmal, well played Pak.

  • on July 6, 2010, 10:53 GMT

    Nice article. And I totally agree with Izzy, well said, Umar's the making of the next Javed Miandad.

  • on July 6, 2010, 10:36 GMT

    i'm a sri lankan who watched his first hundred in odi live and i thought that day that this guy could be the next Sachin in the makings Umar Akmal You beauty keep on playing well !!!! please play him in the next IPL and Pakistan please lay a ODI series with sri lanka i'm bored watching all these India Vs. Sri Lanka Matches

  • on July 6, 2010, 10:10 GMT

    Green Colour on Lips .. Green Colour On Body, Green all the way ... Awesome innings & stunned all Australian Bowlers ... Umer Akmal is special talent for Pakistan ... ALLAH bless him & Bless PAKISTAN team ... Long Live Pakistan and Long live Pakistan Cricket ...

  • Tashfeen on July 6, 2010, 9:38 GMT

    Most progidious talent since Javed Miaindad and Inzamamul Haq but different.I think Wqar and Afridi are right in letting him play the way he wants to, if we curb his natural instincts we will spoil his game and he will get confused. Remember Afridi in his early days, we changed or tried to change his natural game and he ended up in a mess. In all the darkness surrounding Pakistan as a whole Umar Akmal brings a light in which we as Pakistanis should relish, savour and pray for his continued successes.

  • dsig3 on July 6, 2010, 8:55 GMT

    Really pakistan, i dont think you guys are giving this young man enough credit. He has already surpassed all your greatest batsmen and is a living legend. Please dont be afraid of being too hasty, he has nearly played 20 T20/20 games, 20 ODI, and 6 Tests.

  • gettussaa on July 6, 2010, 8:52 GMT

    Whatever has happened to Australian captains? There was a time when Australia produced great sporting captains like Waugh and Taylor. Whats up with the Punter and the Pup? They have consistently been arrogant in victory and sore in defeat. If Pup cannot appreciate such a wonderful innings for what its worth, I pity him. No wonder his girlfriend left him! Anyway, what is he doing in Australian T20 team. He is a deadweight. I am surprised that "prompt" Australian selectors are not taking any action regarding that.

  • on July 6, 2010, 8:46 GMT

    Pakistan Cricket Board: Please nurture this talent with care, because what you have there is the making of a next Javed Miandad.

  • on July 6, 2010, 8:02 GMT

    May Allah Tala Blessed him and Keep Him Fit to Serve the NAtion for a Longer Period of Time....... Superb ARticle..... Pakistan ZIndaBad ....!!!!!

  • on July 6, 2010, 7:59 GMT

    gud said and very classy stroke player he is ..

  • on July 6, 2010, 7:51 GMT

    There has been a lot of debate about S.Smith that he is the bowler who can replace S.Warne , U.Akmal showed the Aussies where he actually belong . Its not fair to judge him basing on the performance against England, they are not good players of spin bowling . The real test for him will be against the sub continent teams where they can handle the spinners better. So beware Aussies before u rate someone as u premier spinner. Akmal's was like a magician and bat was like hi magic wand and he used it with ease to send the ball out of the ground. I am not a pakistani but a true Indian Supporter but i cant resist myself from praising someone who has played a magical innings like Akmal and most importantly against Aussies.....

  • on July 6, 2010, 7:41 GMT

    Butt like to score against INDIA, Afridi like to score against India, Sri Lanka and South Africa but seems to Umar Akmal LOVES Australian bowlers since he socre every time against them.

    For me Pakistan future is Umar Akmal, Mohammed Amir, Umir Amin, Kamran Akmal

  • on July 6, 2010, 7:27 GMT

    Awesome Article. Clarke himself is not suitable for T20s. He should step down as a T20 player.

  • on July 6, 2010, 7:04 GMT

    awesome player with awesome eyes

  • SohailTariq on July 6, 2010, 6:59 GMT

    Assalam-o-Alaikum! He is a good player and play with the flair. I think that Pakistan Coach and Captain should say him that think and play as u want and use him carefully. He is a good prospect for Pakistan and a danger for other cricketing nation. Well done Umer...

  • mani199 on July 6, 2010, 6:57 GMT

    surely he will be the blind pick for the icc emerging cricketer of the year,, will he?

  • Pathiyal on July 6, 2010, 6:56 GMT

    Yes, Umar Akmal at this tender age has proved how capable and consistant he is. The best part is that he scores very well and quick against the best bowlers in the scene which speaks volumes about his effectiveness. I wish to see him against India and of course that does not stop me in anyways from wishing Umar Akmal a glorious career!!!!!

  • sahir786 on July 6, 2010, 6:47 GMT

    REading the comments made by clarke i definetly feel he needs a break from game immediately he has really lost it now. In addition to loosing his batting skills,he has lost what comments to say,he has forgotten it was a t20 game & umer akmal came in the 7th over,ball cant be said to be old in 7th over. Clarke should accept like a man that his mind is not in the game & take a break like tait did may be it will work for him as it did for tait & as far as umar is concerned what an innings & what a player...

  • on July 6, 2010, 5:13 GMT

    very well written article.....definitely umar played like he had to :)

  • ABRAR-JANJUA on July 6, 2010, 5:13 GMT

    Fantastic Article. Umer really put Australia on back foot not only physically but also mentally.If Clarke & co don't want to give credit to Umer,it does not matter,but it does matter that he singlehandedly won the Match for Pakistan.Great Inning Umer.Well done man.

  • Riz.Khan on July 6, 2010, 4:57 GMT

    Clarke comments are not professional & its look ugly bcoz a player perform well against you accept it. He is not a T20 player but captain what a joke

  • mohsin11 on July 6, 2010, 4:47 GMT

    keep on rolling umar,u vil become a legend one day & as far as clarke's comment abt umar, i would like to ask him that wat he thinks abt white & hussy,they also come lower down the order,come on u have to admit that he took the game away from u.....:)

  • Rahul_78 on July 6, 2010, 4:42 GMT

    Hold your horses nagraj. " Bravery, quick thinking, creativity, and leadership - Umar displayed all those qualities..." This is exactly what we do to young talents in subcontinent. Quick to praise and double quick to critisize. No doubt yesterdays knock was brilliant but consistensy is name of the game and differentiate a great player from good one. Umar has got all the tools and temprament. Hopefuly waqar and afridi will handle him with care and groom him for better things in future..

  • Crick-3t on July 6, 2010, 4:25 GMT

    Nice Topic and ver good HeadingA++

  • galib.boo on July 6, 2010, 4:25 GMT

    he can see the ball like foot-ball.....amazing.....hope that in test he can have some support from other players...

  • muhammadrafiullah on July 6, 2010, 4:16 GMT

    oh...pretty good aggressive stroke player... i love him.

  • on July 6, 2010, 2:34 GMT

    He is a class act and will do well in the future.. needs to keep his head right - take a leaf from Sachin Tendulkar and Pakistani Greats..

  • swarooprao on July 6, 2010, 2:33 GMT

    Currently, the only thing the Aussie cricketers are No.1 at is not giving credit where it's due. In that way, they are very poor sportsmen, because they begrudge praise to anyone other than Aussies. I watched Umar's innings yesterday and was spellbound by his innings. Truly riveting.

  • on July 6, 2010, 1:57 GMT

    I have now seen couple of innings from Umar, in test and also in T20I, and I can't remember seeing an equally talented young batsman since Tendulkar hit Qadir for those sixes in his debut series. Lara and Injamam were in early 20s in 1992 world cup when they truly announced their arrival so not comparing Umar with them and few others. I won't be surprised if he goes on to become the best batsman of this decade (2010s).

  • Umair_umair on July 6, 2010, 1:35 GMT

    So Nice of Clarke. He should have a big heart.

    For Umar Akmal, I have been saying again and again. Another Inzamam-ul-Haq has aapeared on the Horizon.

    Yes, InZamam (no younis Khan, No Yousaf BUT Inzamam). Remember those innings in 1992 Worldcup hitting from Inzi?

    Hope Umar goes on play for next several years.

  • on July 6, 2010, 0:56 GMT

    went to watch the match. the atmosphere was amazing and no one could tell if it was played at Edgbaston or national stadium, khi :).......gul/umar were fantastic but akhtar was disappointing....hope he can get back to his groves soon we need him to perform and be part of the team for as long as possible....pakistan zindabad

  • AndyZaltzmannsHair on July 6, 2010, 0:41 GMT

    Looks like someone has been taking make-up lessons from Andrew Symonds... not a wise choice. Loose the green lips, you aren't the incredible Hulk. Other than that the boy can bat. I like tha fact that he's been allowed to develop naturally and learn his own game and make his own mistakes. I also like the fact that Aamer is allowed to just run in and bowl fast without fear of a million spreadsheets and diagrams telling him how he should have bowled a tighter line and length. It makes players that more eager to play cricket. Let players learn naturally and stop killing the love of the game from within them.

  • Roamer on July 5, 2010, 23:24 GMT

    Finally they have beaten Aussies ..... I think both Umer's made the difference. Umer Akmal was simply superb, I have never seen anyone bat so dominantly against australian bowlers like this in two consecutive matches and mind you it was not slogging but just smart cricketing shots. Whereas Umer Gul has comeback and really reminded all of us of what Pakistan was missing in the last worldcup, his control and yorkers were simply brilliant.

  • on July 5, 2010, 23:16 GMT

    Nice to have someone like UMAR AKMAL , A player who can take the legacy of great player we have in the past ...

  • on July 5, 2010, 23:00 GMT

    I always believed that Pakistan has everything it takes to beat a team like Australia and today they proved it. The formula to success today was simple 'play like a unit, a proud Pakistani unit!'. Go Pakistan!!

  • on July 5, 2010, 22:37 GMT

    Great effort, clearly visible that Clarke is not going to accept the truth "But the Australian captain wasn't giving his young opponent enough credit for his talent: Umar had come in one-down at St Lucia and imposed himself without much sweat." All the best Team Pakistan.................

  • khalidSami on July 5, 2010, 22:37 GMT

    Umar is a great talent. I agree with his coach with experience and maturity, he will be a great player. The matches in England this summer with the top 2 sides Aussies & English will definitely cement his credentials.

    I think he scored quite a few runs with the Australians in limited over games in Australia and West Indies but he probably needs a big innings in a test cricket to convince Clarke.

    .

  • on July 5, 2010, 22:11 GMT

    He is the most arrogant rookie I've seen since Pietersen, he really does believe he can demolish the best bowlers in the world, thats why I love to see him bat. Most young Pakistani batsmen arrive in International cricket without any confidence and they certainly don't attack the bowling. The other one who did was Nasir Jamshed.

  • Big_Poppa on July 5, 2010, 22:01 GMT

    The best talent in world cricket presently.

  • on July 5, 2010, 21:56 GMT

    Good work by Umar Akmal: this guy is becoming the backbone of the Pakistani batting line-up. Not to forget Afridi's brilliant fielding as he took two spectacular catches that require concentration, quick judgement and body reflexes. These thing barely come together for Afridi in one match, but it seems that he's been inspired by the level of responsibility that has been put on him.

    Umar Gul was as usual @ his best in the death overs and surely there is no bowler who could wilfully reverse swing the ball at the end of a 20 over innings. Mohammed Aamer has been the pick of the bowler everytime he's been asked to deliver and so has been Abdur Razzaq and Saeed Ajmal.

    Let's hope for a victory in the t20 series, a format where Pakistan is @ its best!!!

  • knowledge_eater on July 5, 2010, 21:47 GMT

    Sorry I don't want to jump on to things, but I can't hold on .. so I hope Umar doesn't read my message and act like superstar (I don't care if he does), but I am seeing Umar Akmal eclipsing Javed Miandad. Sorry I said it. Because I personally want him to go beyond that Pakistani legend. Another difference was Umar Gul, he showed why was he missed the most in world cup. Took wickets at the right time. And as I predicted ROD is hot its time to attack. Aus. will attack back strongly if not in next T20 but especially in Test. However, England is one of the most ideal pitch for Aamer and Asif, take the opportunity and beat or atleast drawing with Australia will do for me. Afridi failed with bat doesn't surprised me :P and his fielding neither surprise me either. I still think he can be bit more consistent but not against India hahaha Cheers I am supporting Pakistan till they face India, because if they beat other top teams, India have chance to be number 1 in test/odi both. Peace

  • wanderer1 on July 5, 2010, 21:46 GMT

    To answer Michael Clarke, Umar Akmal's finest knock to date came against a good NZ attack, with Shane Bond on full tilt in the opening Test last year. On a seaming, and slightly uneven wicket in Dunedin, with the team at 85-5 he smashed the bowlers to all parts, allowing Pakistan to almost win that match with another fine knock of 75 in the 2nd innings. Swing, pace or bounce doesn't bother him too much, it's about bowling good deliveries to get him out. I still feel that if he wants the big hundreds he has to temper his natural game, and play within himself a touch, and he'll find that simply occupying the crease will bring big rewards.

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  • wanderer1 on July 5, 2010, 21:46 GMT

    To answer Michael Clarke, Umar Akmal's finest knock to date came against a good NZ attack, with Shane Bond on full tilt in the opening Test last year. On a seaming, and slightly uneven wicket in Dunedin, with the team at 85-5 he smashed the bowlers to all parts, allowing Pakistan to almost win that match with another fine knock of 75 in the 2nd innings. Swing, pace or bounce doesn't bother him too much, it's about bowling good deliveries to get him out. I still feel that if he wants the big hundreds he has to temper his natural game, and play within himself a touch, and he'll find that simply occupying the crease will bring big rewards.

  • knowledge_eater on July 5, 2010, 21:47 GMT

    Sorry I don't want to jump on to things, but I can't hold on .. so I hope Umar doesn't read my message and act like superstar (I don't care if he does), but I am seeing Umar Akmal eclipsing Javed Miandad. Sorry I said it. Because I personally want him to go beyond that Pakistani legend. Another difference was Umar Gul, he showed why was he missed the most in world cup. Took wickets at the right time. And as I predicted ROD is hot its time to attack. Aus. will attack back strongly if not in next T20 but especially in Test. However, England is one of the most ideal pitch for Aamer and Asif, take the opportunity and beat or atleast drawing with Australia will do for me. Afridi failed with bat doesn't surprised me :P and his fielding neither surprise me either. I still think he can be bit more consistent but not against India hahaha Cheers I am supporting Pakistan till they face India, because if they beat other top teams, India have chance to be number 1 in test/odi both. Peace

  • on July 5, 2010, 21:56 GMT

    Good work by Umar Akmal: this guy is becoming the backbone of the Pakistani batting line-up. Not to forget Afridi's brilliant fielding as he took two spectacular catches that require concentration, quick judgement and body reflexes. These thing barely come together for Afridi in one match, but it seems that he's been inspired by the level of responsibility that has been put on him.

    Umar Gul was as usual @ his best in the death overs and surely there is no bowler who could wilfully reverse swing the ball at the end of a 20 over innings. Mohammed Aamer has been the pick of the bowler everytime he's been asked to deliver and so has been Abdur Razzaq and Saeed Ajmal.

    Let's hope for a victory in the t20 series, a format where Pakistan is @ its best!!!

  • Big_Poppa on July 5, 2010, 22:01 GMT

    The best talent in world cricket presently.

  • on July 5, 2010, 22:11 GMT

    He is the most arrogant rookie I've seen since Pietersen, he really does believe he can demolish the best bowlers in the world, thats why I love to see him bat. Most young Pakistani batsmen arrive in International cricket without any confidence and they certainly don't attack the bowling. The other one who did was Nasir Jamshed.

  • khalidSami on July 5, 2010, 22:37 GMT

    Umar is a great talent. I agree with his coach with experience and maturity, he will be a great player. The matches in England this summer with the top 2 sides Aussies & English will definitely cement his credentials.

    I think he scored quite a few runs with the Australians in limited over games in Australia and West Indies but he probably needs a big innings in a test cricket to convince Clarke.

    .

  • on July 5, 2010, 22:37 GMT

    Great effort, clearly visible that Clarke is not going to accept the truth "But the Australian captain wasn't giving his young opponent enough credit for his talent: Umar had come in one-down at St Lucia and imposed himself without much sweat." All the best Team Pakistan.................

  • on July 5, 2010, 23:00 GMT

    I always believed that Pakistan has everything it takes to beat a team like Australia and today they proved it. The formula to success today was simple 'play like a unit, a proud Pakistani unit!'. Go Pakistan!!

  • on July 5, 2010, 23:16 GMT

    Nice to have someone like UMAR AKMAL , A player who can take the legacy of great player we have in the past ...

  • Roamer on July 5, 2010, 23:24 GMT

    Finally they have beaten Aussies ..... I think both Umer's made the difference. Umer Akmal was simply superb, I have never seen anyone bat so dominantly against australian bowlers like this in two consecutive matches and mind you it was not slogging but just smart cricketing shots. Whereas Umer Gul has comeback and really reminded all of us of what Pakistan was missing in the last worldcup, his control and yorkers were simply brilliant.