Pakistan v South Africa, 2nd ODI, Dubai November 2, 2013

'Shouldn't relax after winning' - Misbah

ESPNcricinfo staff

Misbah-ul-Haq warned his team against complacency after their series-leveling, 66-run win against South Africa in the second ODI, stating there were still problems in Pakistan's batting that needed to be rectified.

"We shouldn't relax after winning and we still need to improve. Our batsmen are getting good starts but aren't converting them so we need to rectify that," Misbah said.

"We have a very tough series on our hands, they are very tough opponents and are going to give us a hard time," he added.

Pakistan, who lost six wickets for 17 runs in their one-run defeat in the first ODI, put up an improved score of 209 in the second match. However, apart from Ahmed Shehzad, who scored his third consecutive ODI fifty, none of the batsmen crossed an individual score of 30. Mohammad Hafeez and Misbah both got starts and shared substantial partnerships with Shehzad, but their failure to carry on until the latter half of the innings saw Pakistan struggle towards the end.

Their bowling, however, more than made up for it, getting South Africa all out for a score of below 200 for the second successive time. Mohammad Irfan and Sohail Tanvir got key breakthroughs, but it was the spin attack of Saeed Ajmal, Shahid Afridi and Mohammad Hafeez that smothered the South African batting. Between them, the spinners bowled 23.4 overs, conceding 66 runs and picking up six wickets, including four of South Africa's top six batsmen.

"It was a really good performance especially after getting out for a low score, our bowlers did the job for us again," Misbah said. "[A score of] 220-230 is par on this ground, whenever you score 200+ you have a chance here, especially if you get early wickets. The way Hafeez started, he bowled very well and Afridi took some important wickets and Ajmal put the pressure on. They were well supported by the fast bowlers. Tanvir got the first wicket and Irfan came back to take more wickets."

Afridi followed up his three-wicket haul in the first ODI with figures of 3 for 26 in the second game. Introduced into the attack in the 22nd over, he dismissed Faf du Plessis off the first ball, and then had AB de Villiers edging the ball to Umar Akmal in his next over to turn the match in Pakistan's favour.

"We learnt a lot from the last game. Misbah and the management realised that we lost the last game badly and we did a great job today," Afridi said.

AB de Villiers, South Africa's captain, admitted that his batsmen failed against "some of the best bowlers in the world".

"Our bowlers bowled really and we had great intensity in the field," de Villiers said. "It's all about attitude and we had that in the field. McLaren, Morkel and Tahir bowled very well and I'm proud of the way we played in the first half. Morkel started with great intensity. We have a few issues in the batting and it's up to us to turn it around, I'm very disappointed and Pakistan were too good for us tonight, no excuses for us. We have to face some of the best bowlers in the world and we weren't good enough."

De Villiers backed his team to make a comeback in the series and said that he was enjoying the experience of leading the side.

"To be very honest, I am feeling pressure," said De Villiers after Friday's game. "I think any captain that leads a proud nation like South Africa and the Proteas team feels pressure and I do feel pressure. But I am enjoying my captaincy more than ever and feel that I am getting good response from the guys, especially on this tour, it didn't show tonight but I have full confidence that it will come through in the next one. They have two bowlers in the top five in one-day rankings and it's world-class spinners we are playing against, but once again I have full confidence that we will come back."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Mohammad on November 4, 2013, 22:14 GMT

    Jamshed has been given enough chances and now its time for the selectors to try some young blood.From young blood,I mean Sohaib Maqsood and if possible replace Amin with Shafiq who is much better and consistent than Amin.

  • Dummy4 on November 3, 2013, 14:32 GMT

    I wish I had watched the game. Looking forward to watch all the rest of the matches and I hope we win BIG TIME! Go Team Pakistan!

  • Muhammad on November 3, 2013, 11:57 GMT

    @Khurram S Chaudry: Nasir is a walking wicket I agree but he is the only player in the entire squad who can score a century against this South African team. Coaches can work with him but there is no better way to get into form than playing international cricket.

    I have a suggestion. Why shouldn't we play Nasir at number 3 for a while while opening with Hafeez. Nasir has played at number 3 in t20s. If the openers get a good start, an out of form player can build his innings based on that. Opening innings is tough for an out of form player. Have your say.

  • Dummy4 on November 3, 2013, 10:29 GMT

    guys, with nasir in , hafeez is almost opening . coming in 2nd or 3rd over is same as coming to open game. it is not the case where hafeez is coming to bat when ball is getting old. the logic you gave is right that we dont need to put hafeez back on opening but for that you want to play with 10 batsman only as nasir will be a walking wicket. He is out of form and in last 11 innings he has scored 194. and during that period 31 in 3 t20s. he needs to be rested and coaches should work with him. had full series of WI and ZIM. this series is important 1 as pak has never won against SA. and this is their best chance because SA is not in good form.

    Maqsood should get a chance along with asad instead of Nasir & umar amin. asad is far better than what umar amin is doing and secondly you have a new guy in squad who avgs good in list A.

  • Shahab on November 2, 2013, 22:32 GMT

    Well played Team Pak, should have been 2 nil up actually. Still terrible batting, batsmen just dont know and looks like do not want to learn the art of taking singles and rotating the strike. Whatmore should make batsmen practice with 8 fielders in the ring and take quick singles, get them out of nets and practice like you play in match. Stick to same team give players more chance and confidence. Superb bowling unit.

  • Omar- on November 2, 2013, 22:06 GMT

    Nasir Jamshed should be given a chance in all five matches, he is a class player we need to be a little patient with him.

    Hafeez should bat at number 6 & Umar Akmal at number 3.

    Moreover Asad shafiq should replace Umar Amin and wahab riaz need to make way for Sohaib Maqsood we dont need 3 pacers and 3 spinners, two pacers will do. This way Pakistan will further strengthen its fragile batting line up and would definitely give South Africa a run for their money.

  • Android on November 2, 2013, 19:59 GMT

    take asad n place of amin and give chance to debutant n place of jamshid

  • Muhammad on November 2, 2013, 19:09 GMT

    You can drop Nasir but who will open in his place? Hafeez? Remember Steyn will be back. He will trouble both the right handers specially Hafeez with his outswingers.

    Hafeez is a bowling all rounder not an opening material to say the least. After dropping Hafeez down the the order to number 3, if we promote him up the order again we will be back to square one.

    Say we open with Hafeez. Who will bat at number 3? Umar Amin? Umar Akmal? They can't negotiate old ball as they showed in last two innings. How can they play relatively new ball. Sohaib Maqsood? Is he that capable to debut on such an important position. I think nobody is. Asad Shafiq? Are we gonna persist with him there? Is he regular member of the team?

    Now if we have selected two regular openers why don't we give them entire series. Learn from India who after consistent failures of Rohit Sharma kept on persisting with him. See the result. He scored double ton today.

  • Rayhan on November 2, 2013, 18:04 GMT

    Umar Amin should be dropped for Asad Shafiq. Asad is by far a more competent batsman than others youngsters. He should be given more and more exposure even if he fails as he will come good for sure. With Amin, we are just taking a chance based on favoritism and poor judgment. Nasir needs an extended run, as he has the capability. Drop Tanvir or Wahab for Junaid, as like Shafiq he needs more and more games.

  • Dummy4 on November 2, 2013, 13:41 GMT

    Hafeez and Shehzad should open. This team should be A Shehzad,M Hafeez,U Akmal, M Ul Haq, S Maqsood,S Afridi,A Rehman,S Ajmal,M Irfan,J Khan Jamshed out of form and amin is overrated.

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