Pakistan v Sri Lanka, 2nd ODI, Dubai November 15, 2011

Misbah happy with Pakistan fightback

ESPNcricinfo staff

Misbah-ul-Haq, the Pakistan captain, has said he was happy with the way his side fought back after losing early wickets in the second ODI against Sri Lanka in Dubai, even though Pakistan ultimately lost the game by 25 runs.

Set a target of 236, Pakistan slumped to 11 for 3 as Mohammad Hafeez, Imran Farhat and Younis Khan made just seven runs between them. Umar Akmal led the recovery with a sparkling 91, but Pakistan eventually came up short, and were bowled out for 210 in 46.3 overs.

"I think the way they started, them taking three early wickets, we were under pressure," Misbah said. "Everyone fought well until it ended. It was a bad day for us. It was just a matter of playing 50 overs, which we did not do. I am happy with the way we fought after losing three early wickets. The youngsters really performed well.

Umar had the chase under control, but perished in the batting Powerplay while attempting a fourth successive boundary. That gave Sri Lanka the opening, and they dismantled the lower order to seal victory.

"Umar Akmal's natural game is to have a go at the bowlers, so he was doing that," Misbah reasoned. "I think he tried his level best, the way he played he just made the game for us, but sometimes you make mistakes. That's a part of cricket - he had just scored three boundaries, but he took a chance. He should have gone for a single but I think he was confident. Sometimes you get out playing confident shots. It is a part of the game."

Earlier, an incisive opening spell from Umar Gul had kept Sri Lanka under control for the bulk of their innings, until Mahela Jayawardene sparked a revival in their batting Powerplay. Misbah admitted that Jayawardene's innings turned the momentum of the game.

"We had a chance to keep them to 200, but Mahela played really well," Misbah said. "I think the bowlers did a great job, but altogether it was a bad day for us. The way Umar Gul bowled in his first spell, he was unlucky not to get wickets.

"Sometimes like today you may be bowling well, but the batting was good and some fielding lapses cost us. It is something we have to control in the future."

The Sri Lanka captain Tillakaratne Dilshan was also thankful to Jayawardene for his contribution to the series-levelling win. "Mahela is a very experienced player, and his partnership with Upul Tharanga was really crucial for us since that's how we got to 230," Dilshan said. "Mahela had struggled for the last few days with his knee, but yesterday he told me not to worry, and that he was ready to play with pain. It showed his character and how tough he is.

"We needed this win. Everyone played very good cricket. I got a start but threw my wicket. We needed to get a start and we got that. We planned for 240 but we were short by about 20 runs. The bowlers did a great job. We are relieved. This win was very much needed and now the series is open and we hope to play this type of cricket in the remaining matches."

The third game of the five-match series will be played on Friday, also in Dubai.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Farhan on November 17, 2011, 17:45 GMT

    Just watched the highlight of the game, and was thinking if there are any stats to check how many reviews Imran Farhat has used? any time he gets lbw he reviews! Too bad his first game score will get him some more games and he would do what he does best, NOT score runs!

  • Dummy4 on November 17, 2011, 9:30 GMT

    Wre z kamran if nt kepr bt he z a miles btr dn farhat as an opener my team Hafez. kamran. ykhan. s malik msbah. u akmal. Afridi.. Gul. Junaid. Chema. Ajmal

  • Dummy4 on November 16, 2011, 18:43 GMT

    Abdul Razzaq should be moved up the batting order to number 4 so he has time to make big runs because we know Razzaq is a very good hitter and if he gets of to a start he is very dangerous.

  • Dummy4 on November 16, 2011, 14:20 GMT

    i think that pak team need wahab and malik if malik was there then he could easily made 25 to 30 which may be the turning point of the match and i pray that all pak team and hafeez play well in the rest of series but if he doesnt play well in the 3rd odi then he should be rested for a match or two and afridi should be the opener instead of hafeez and we all knew that afridi was the best opener for pak once a time i wish that pak win the sreies by 4-0

  • Dummy4 on November 16, 2011, 11:48 GMT

    Pakistan did not play well in the 2nd ODI as they are capable of doing so. Dropping opener twice, no ball, too many wides and bad performance by first three in the batting order did not help the cause of winning. Despite all these shortcomings I felt Pakistan should have gone to win the match. The main reasons Pakistan lost the match at the end was unnecessary run out of Razzaq and Sarfraz Ahmed being given out LBW when replay showed umpire made an error. I am also of the opinion Pakistan batting order is not right, there is no point in having Razzaq and Afridi bat so low in the order, they are attacking batsmen and need to bat high up. My batting order would be 1. Hafeez, 2. Farhat, 3. Razzaq, 4. Yunus, 5. Afridi, 6. Misbah, 7. Umar, 8. Sarfraz, 9. Tanvir (no Cheema). 10. Gul, 11. Ajmal. I would like to see Tanvir play in place of Cheema as he is a good bowler and it will make batting stronger. At this stage there is no reason to make too many changes to final XI.

  • A on November 16, 2011, 8:58 GMT

    @Sajjad Haider Janjua I agree with you and Jazib Ali Javed, however, what was Misbah doing agreeing with Farhat to let him use the review. Even a blind man could tell that if there was no nick on the bat, it was a plumb LBW. Dumb & Dumber

  • A on November 16, 2011, 8:54 GMT

    Please bring Razzaq up the order with Hafeez to open the batting and bring Shoaib Malik in inplace of Imran Farhat. Imagine such a line up with an additional bowler to an already strong bowling lineup, not to forget, a terrific fielder. The lineup can be fiddled around depending the match situation but this is what it should look like: Hafeez, Malik, Younus, Akmal, Misbah, Malik, Razzaq, Afridi, Gul, Ajmal & Junaid.

  • Dummy4 on November 16, 2011, 8:21 GMT

    @Jazib Ali Javed you forgot to mention his dropped catch cost us more as far as Sri lankan opener added another 40-50 runs so I agree he is man of the match from Sri Lanka's point of view :)

  • Dummy4 on November 16, 2011, 5:54 GMT

    @Desihungama, Brother Look at What Saed Ajmal does after taking wicket, not only him Mr.Gul....what do you think about that...?

  • abdul on November 15, 2011, 20:39 GMT

    pak should keep the same lineup; Misbah should move one order down and so should Abdul Razzaq

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