Pakistan v Sri Lanka, 2nd Test, Dubai, 5th day January 12, 2014

Loss exposes Pakistan frailties

It is hard to pin-point one single reason for Pakistan's capitulation in Dubai; there were many chinks in their armour
  shares 52

Pakistan entered day five amid prediction of heavy rain in Dubai and although thick clouds prevailed over the stadium all day, the rain never came down. Pakistan may have considered themselves unfortunate, but they were out-batted and out-bowled by an efficient Sri Lankan team that beat them by nine wickets - their biggest win in terms of wickets, against Pakistan. The home team may have walked out with positives after the draw in Abu Dhabi, however, the loss in Dubai, once again, exposed a number of chinks in the Pakistan team.

Top-order conundrum
Pakistan's top order was praised for their contribution in the first Test but their failure in the second means the team will have to take a fresh look at their options. The No. 3 position remains a talking point after Mohammad Hafeez, drafted back into the Test side after a stellar run in the ODIs, couldn't reprise the same form, scoring 21 and 1 in the second Test. Ahmed Shehzad's introduction as an opener didn't work either; the move disturbed the left-right combination of Khurram Manzoor and Shan Masood which had set-up Pakistan's win against South Africa in Abu Dhabi in November.

Middle-order frailties
Pakistan's over-reliance on Younis Khan and Misbah-ul-Haq is no secret and it's high time other batsmen started delivering. The technically sound Asad Shafiq, who scored a century against South Africa at the same venue three months back, has been struggling since. Though he played some elegant back-foot shots on the fourth day, he wasn't able to stay for an extended period; he contributed 6 and 23.

The overworked workhorse
Saeed Ajmal has toiled for 114.2 overs in the two Tests in this series and conceded 248 runs. On top of the workload, he also took a blow on his foot while batting in the second innings. It can be argued that Sri Lanka batsmen played him with caution and neutralised him well, but he did look off-colour with his line and length.

The ineffective seamer
Rahat Ali, who went into the series as the second seamer, failed to make an impact in the two Tests. His inability to pick up wickets was excused by the captain, the coach and the team manager, who suggested the bowler had been unlucky. But for someone who bowled more than 100 overs in the series for just two wickets, it can't be just about luck. It also points to the lack of skill.

The flat tenure
Dav Whatmore's tenure as the coach of Pakistan is soon coming to an end; he is with the team for another nine days. In the two years with Whatmore at the helm, Pakistan didn't show any signs of improvement and failed to win a single Test series. The record will leave a blot on Whatmore's coaching credentials.

Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • rezauk on January 14, 2014, 11:12 GMT

    Creatiing a fine test Squad is down to the selectors ,Coach and Captain plus some input from vice captain ? To play test cricket you need many skills being Technical , concentration , fitness , agression etc and a bit of the x factor. This could be the reason why players with average FC stats are given a chance - Obviously when this hasn't worked repetitively then accept it , be brave and bring in the guys with the highest batting averages because logically they deserve their chance. Secondly when Pakistan bowl well and in several cases have had the opps at 50-5 you need to keep attacking if a partnership builds. Too many times Misbah has dropped the field giving single after single. Batting wise too leads of 100+ and players are batting too defensively allowing the field to be brought in and creating pressure on yourselves. Although I believe Misbah deserves his place in the Team hs should be forced to resign and get an intelligent Captain in who will back his players to attack

  • keptalittlelow on January 14, 2014, 11:12 GMT

    @Nadeem Sharifuddin, my friend why you blame poor Dave Whatmore for not doing much for Pak Cricket, the real blame goes to the people who brought him in to do this to Pak Cricket, lets not discuss the money involved..

  • keptalittlelow on January 14, 2014, 10:59 GMT

    I don't think blaming pitches or the coach will get Pakistan very far, Pakistan Cricket has much deeper issues, unless and until PCB gets rid of the old guards who did nothing to improve the basic domestic structure of Pakistan Cricket in the last 25 years. We need to lay the foundations of a sound modern domestic structure to nurture the talent like India and Sri Lanka have done. Quite frankly India and Sri Lanka are far ahead of Pakistan in all facets of Cricketing development.

  • on January 14, 2014, 6:22 GMT

    Blame goes to MIsbah, the team management and the selectors. ABDUL HAFEEZ is a very good Limited overs player and a poor test player. Accept it and drop him already. WHere are FAWAD ALAM and HARIS SOHAIL? When will they get an extended run in tests?

  • Yuosufahmed on January 14, 2014, 3:18 GMT

    @ VKohlitheGreat : You are describing how a test match should be won which was lacking in our team in this match and your team in fast bouncy pitches more frequently. Grow up men...

  • Yuosufahmed on January 14, 2014, 2:35 GMT

    @ VKohlitheGreat : You are describing how a test match should be won which was lacking in our team in this match and your team in fast bouncy pitches more frequently. Grow up man...

  • Malti65 on January 13, 2014, 20:40 GMT

    Posted by Lakkhitha Gunathilaka on (January 13, 2014, 18:46 GMT)

    I feel shezad can be given mr opportunities and use umar as d keepr and maqsood and shan masood in for hafeez manzoor.. :

    IT LOOKS QUITE OBVIOUS THAT YOU ARE PAINED BY THE 74 THAT SARFRAZ HIT IN THE SECOND INNINGS, THAT IS WHY YOU WANT UMAR AS WICKET KEEPER.

  • on January 13, 2014, 18:46 GMT

    I feel shezad can be given mr opportunities and use umar as d keepr and maqsood and shan masood in for hafeez manzoor..

  • on January 13, 2014, 18:07 GMT

    we will never miss dave whatmore. i always used to say that dave what more you need from PCB. how much money dave you need so that we can win a single test series. you also lost against Zimbabwe which is pathetic.

  • asim229 on January 13, 2014, 16:33 GMT

    Blaming pitches for the loss doesn't make any sense to me because Srilanka is a subcontinent team which can play spin very well and their bowling strengths is similar to Pakistan.I thought paks strength is fast bowling:)I am sure that if it was a turning track then Herath would have bundled pak batting cheaply given their fragilities and Lakmal would still have got a few wickets so don't blame wickets. Also UAE is the best option pak have outside pak bcse of the pak community and similar pitch conditions and pak have always done much better in UAE so changing to a different country will backfire.Also pls don't blame Hafeez for the loss bcse it was the management who was begging him to stay after his couple of centuries and he missed the BBL money and the T20 experience before leading the side to T20WC.

  • rezauk on January 14, 2014, 11:12 GMT

    Creatiing a fine test Squad is down to the selectors ,Coach and Captain plus some input from vice captain ? To play test cricket you need many skills being Technical , concentration , fitness , agression etc and a bit of the x factor. This could be the reason why players with average FC stats are given a chance - Obviously when this hasn't worked repetitively then accept it , be brave and bring in the guys with the highest batting averages because logically they deserve their chance. Secondly when Pakistan bowl well and in several cases have had the opps at 50-5 you need to keep attacking if a partnership builds. Too many times Misbah has dropped the field giving single after single. Batting wise too leads of 100+ and players are batting too defensively allowing the field to be brought in and creating pressure on yourselves. Although I believe Misbah deserves his place in the Team hs should be forced to resign and get an intelligent Captain in who will back his players to attack

  • keptalittlelow on January 14, 2014, 11:12 GMT

    @Nadeem Sharifuddin, my friend why you blame poor Dave Whatmore for not doing much for Pak Cricket, the real blame goes to the people who brought him in to do this to Pak Cricket, lets not discuss the money involved..

  • keptalittlelow on January 14, 2014, 10:59 GMT

    I don't think blaming pitches or the coach will get Pakistan very far, Pakistan Cricket has much deeper issues, unless and until PCB gets rid of the old guards who did nothing to improve the basic domestic structure of Pakistan Cricket in the last 25 years. We need to lay the foundations of a sound modern domestic structure to nurture the talent like India and Sri Lanka have done. Quite frankly India and Sri Lanka are far ahead of Pakistan in all facets of Cricketing development.

  • on January 14, 2014, 6:22 GMT

    Blame goes to MIsbah, the team management and the selectors. ABDUL HAFEEZ is a very good Limited overs player and a poor test player. Accept it and drop him already. WHere are FAWAD ALAM and HARIS SOHAIL? When will they get an extended run in tests?

  • Yuosufahmed on January 14, 2014, 3:18 GMT

    @ VKohlitheGreat : You are describing how a test match should be won which was lacking in our team in this match and your team in fast bouncy pitches more frequently. Grow up men...

  • Yuosufahmed on January 14, 2014, 2:35 GMT

    @ VKohlitheGreat : You are describing how a test match should be won which was lacking in our team in this match and your team in fast bouncy pitches more frequently. Grow up man...

  • Malti65 on January 13, 2014, 20:40 GMT

    Posted by Lakkhitha Gunathilaka on (January 13, 2014, 18:46 GMT)

    I feel shezad can be given mr opportunities and use umar as d keepr and maqsood and shan masood in for hafeez manzoor.. :

    IT LOOKS QUITE OBVIOUS THAT YOU ARE PAINED BY THE 74 THAT SARFRAZ HIT IN THE SECOND INNINGS, THAT IS WHY YOU WANT UMAR AS WICKET KEEPER.

  • on January 13, 2014, 18:46 GMT

    I feel shezad can be given mr opportunities and use umar as d keepr and maqsood and shan masood in for hafeez manzoor..

  • on January 13, 2014, 18:07 GMT

    we will never miss dave whatmore. i always used to say that dave what more you need from PCB. how much money dave you need so that we can win a single test series. you also lost against Zimbabwe which is pathetic.

  • asim229 on January 13, 2014, 16:33 GMT

    Blaming pitches for the loss doesn't make any sense to me because Srilanka is a subcontinent team which can play spin very well and their bowling strengths is similar to Pakistan.I thought paks strength is fast bowling:)I am sure that if it was a turning track then Herath would have bundled pak batting cheaply given their fragilities and Lakmal would still have got a few wickets so don't blame wickets. Also UAE is the best option pak have outside pak bcse of the pak community and similar pitch conditions and pak have always done much better in UAE so changing to a different country will backfire.Also pls don't blame Hafeez for the loss bcse it was the management who was begging him to stay after his couple of centuries and he missed the BBL money and the T20 experience before leading the side to T20WC.

  • on January 13, 2014, 16:27 GMT

    Quite personal statements in what is supposed to be a serious website. Lack of Skill in Rahat Ali? Yes he hasn't bowled great but he was also the bowler who troubled Sangakkara the most so "lack of skills" is very harsh.

  • SJRN on January 13, 2014, 12:08 GMT

    I am sure no one from PCB even reads these article. They wil read our comments? No chance. Still at least it makes us feel good. I think we need to give up on Hafeez. He will play, no matter what we all think and say, and for whatever reasons. Why not find a compromise?Why not play Asad Shafiq or Azhar Ali at 3 and Hafeez @6? Shafiq and Ali like to take their time and mayl do good to get rid of the shine of the new ball at least and Hafeez can play at his usual pace against an old non swinging ball alongwith the lower middle order and tail ender? Don't forget he is also a full time bowler too. Rahat and Bhatti need to go back to NCA for their bowling but Bhatti is coming up as a handy lower order batsman. Shehzad needs to make way for Masood and Manzoor to carry on for now. Is it a bit too much to ask? If yes then only bring Hafeez @ 6 and play either Shafiq or Azhar @ 3. Thanks

  • Ramu444 on January 13, 2014, 11:38 GMT

    I can understand Pakistan is in bad situation as they can not play in home country and more surprising they can not the pitch they want in UAE.in this case to put all the blame on Misbah is not fair.Pak should not play in UAE any more,there is simply no point.pak should play in SA or Zimbabwe or the other option is to play in Singapore or Malaysia .

  • Sports4Youth on January 13, 2014, 11:03 GMT

    The guys who should be playing Test Cricket are FAWAD Alam & HARRIS Sohail as they have first class averages of 55 & 52 respectively. If they are given a fair and continues opportinity they will definately perform better than Hafeez, Azhar & Shafiq. Even MAQSOOD with a first class average of 43 should be good.

    It is simple logic that if HAFEEZ, AZHAR & SHAFIQ were better than FAWAD, HARRIS & MAQSOOD then their first class averages would have also been better. Three years have been wasted with them, now not more. Azhar & Shafiq are playing only test matches, then they go back to play first class, but are not seeing any improvement or change in them. THERE IS NO POINT IN BLAMING THE COACH IF THE PLAYERS ARE SUBSTANDARD.

    ESPNCricinfo, please publish.

  • Sports4Youth on January 13, 2014, 10:55 GMT

    @ IRPK : completely agreed with you. please compare below the Tests and First class averages of some players.

    Averages - - -- Tests - - Frist class

    M.HAFEEZ - - - 33.96 - 34.84

    AZHAR Ali - - 38.53 - 36.18

    ASAD Shafiq - 37.08 - 38.44

    K.Manzoor - - 29.80 - 39.25

    A.SHEHZAD - - 26.25 - 41.17

    SARFRAZ A. - 17.00 -- 40.33 - & The following guys are not selected.

    FAWAD A. - 41.66 - 55.75

    HARIS Sohail - - - - - - 52.01

    Sohaib Maqsood - - - 43.44

    HAFEEZ has a pathetic average of 34 in first class matches and others are less than 40 except SHEHZAD. It means that these guys WILL ALWAYS SUFFER against quality attacks like South Africa, England, Ausralia etc. It is also well documented that Hafeez cannot face the moving ball. Now it is three years since Hafeez, Azhar and Shafiq are getting continuos opportunities in Tests, but not improvement. They will never improve because they dont have the class even for 1st class.

    ESPNCricinfo, Please publish.

  • wrenx on January 13, 2014, 9:47 GMT

    Goodbye Dav, won't miss you at all

  • IRPK on January 13, 2014, 9:33 GMT

    Shehzad, Hafeez, Khurram Manzoor, all three of them are not test class. They might be able to play one good innings here and there but they dont seem a long term solution to the Pakistan top order. Asad Shafiq should bat at number3. Shan Masood should be included but I dont think there is any one else in the squad who could be considered as a test class opener to open with Shan Masood. Azhar Ali is a "limited' batsman who is also vulnerable around off stump. Rahat Ali does not have variety in his bowling and is therefore not able to pick wickets.

  • fayyaz03 on January 13, 2014, 9:14 GMT

    After this loss, I feel so sorry for the youngsters (fawad Alam, Haris Sohail, Sohaib Maqsood, Umar Akma, Sadaf Hussain, Ehsan Adil) who deserve their place but are still waiting for selection. Pakistan could not win a single Test series in two years (even not in Zimbabwe) this is what you call Rock Bottom. Poor A.Rehman, Shan Masood & Azhar Ali were slaughtered for the guys like Hafeez & Ahmed Shahzad who have no future in test cricket at all.

  • stormy16 on January 13, 2014, 8:13 GMT

    I think discipline cost Pakistan as there is not much doubt about the abundance of talent in Pakistan bolwing ranks. If the SL seam bowlers who are largely unknown outbowl a Pakistan seam attack, Pakistan have missed a trick somewhere. Obvioulsy you need to consider that SL batted well but there was seam and swing though most of the two tests yet, SL manage to get enough on the board to be ahead by the second test.

  • on January 13, 2014, 7:39 GMT

    Kurram Mansoor is technically flawed batsman. Any sensible bowler will get him out within a couple of overs by bowling him around the off stump. He's not a great leaver of the ball. Shan Masood is technically far far better than Khurram. Shan, not only a sound left hander, but also he played a lot in the English conditions, where the ball swings and seems and he's a good leaver of the ball. Khurram, somehow scored 70 odd runs in the Dubai test. Take it from me, if he plays again in the next test, he will have double flop this time.

  • Fauzer on January 13, 2014, 7:37 GMT

    @VKohlitheGraet: Mate, you are describing exactly how a test match is won. Picking a well balanced team to suit the conditions and the opposition, if you are lucky to win the toss, make a wise choice, and the whole or most of the team making the best use of conditions and actually delivers what the captain asks for, taking your catches when they come, and physically and mentally perservere when things are tough. That IS how you win a test match. Don't look so surprised.

  • on January 13, 2014, 7:19 GMT

    vishnu27: i agree a team has to be able to perform on any conditions. not saying to do much about pitch. but all of us questioning in past few days about spin and ajmal then thats the answer misbah gave that pcb is not making the pitches.

    it was home series and this series is different to all previous played here. totally different. even in last match played here vs SA, ajmal and imran got so many wickets. if you look at no of wickets all spinners got here in past and this time, it shows total change. it is definately different than what they have been used to on dubai. you wont see a spinning track in any other traditionally bouncy track in eng, aus, Sa. basics remains more or less same.

  • saroshali on January 13, 2014, 6:37 GMT

    MIsbah's over defensive approach has led to this catastrophe! Prefering Rahat ove Talha, Hafeez over ANYBODY and over slow batting himself and compelling Younis to do the same are all the bad decisions a captain can make and earn what he has earned! Its high time we literally need to THROW OUT Hafeez! He is just a liability on the team, an over rated player who plays only due to MIsbah's friendship and virtually nothing else! Unless this politician Hafeez is removed for good Pakistan will continue to have same results no matter how hard others try. We need to have Shan Masood back in the team, get rid of Hafeez and Asad Shafique and blood in Sohaib Maqsood. Younis being the best batsman should bat at #3.

  • VKohlitheGraet on January 13, 2014, 6:23 GMT

    Pakistan showed that they were willing to fight as a team by the way they batted in their second innings. They just have to select the right people for the weak players in the current team and I am sure they can bounce right back.

  • VKohlitheGreat on January 13, 2014, 5:56 GMT

    In my honest opinion, it was Pak missing their first choice players, SL getting to win the toss, getting to bowl when pitch supported bowling, getting to bat when the track was pretty flat (it dint do anything for the bowlers on the 5th day too), Pak's dropped chances that altogether helped SL win this match. Come the 3rd test and if we get to see any one of the above thing going Pakistan's way, I am sure the result will be in the favor of Pakistan.

  • on January 13, 2014, 5:35 GMT

    There was no point in playing , Shehzad, Hafeez, Bhatti and Rahat no matter what. They did the same with Nasir Jamshed and ruined a natural LOI player, and now it's Shehzad's turn. What so bad Azhar Ali did, just one bad test series and he was out? Is that how you treat your talent, who has given the proof a number of sides alongside Asad Shafiq? Get Azhar Ali back and play Shafiq up the order. Shafiq has been a great find, and one of the best for Tests. Scored two centuries and two fifties last year against SA in their home, not to mention NO PAKISTANI, be it Younis, Inzamam or Yousaf has achieved this landmark so far in Test cricket. By playing him up in between Younis and Misbah, would only take off the pressure of playing usually with the tail. Furthermore, give him the confidence he requires i.e. he won't be out after one bad series or a match, his SR was good under AFridi's captaincy when he used to play at 3rd position in ODI's and averaged 40's once.

  • getsetgopk on January 13, 2014, 5:21 GMT

    Rahat has had a tame debut and has remained the same material ever since. Of all the chances he got, not even once he appeared to be a strike bowler or anything close to it. Even though he was unlucky with few drop catches thanks again to some lousy but expected fielding. The Rahat experiement should end now, let him go back to FC and try to improve his skill set and make a comeback. I beleive Pak need a totally different Test team. And players of the caliber of Younus khan should be allowed to play limited overs cricket, the rest should be kept away from junk cricket until they develop the temperament needed for both forms of the game.

  • bootlicker on January 13, 2014, 5:13 GMT

    I don't think we should be worried too much of PAKISTAN'S form at the moment. They did really well in the first test, nobody talked about to replace hafeez but wanted to replace Sarfaraz, in contrast today everyone wanted to replace Hafeez and keep Sarfaraz. In a match somebody has to win and somebody has to loose, if not a draw. So, the next time it may be Sri Lanka who knows. Friends it is a match, and please take it as a sport at the end of the day.

  • getsetgopk on January 13, 2014, 4:38 GMT

    Pakistan has a Hafeez as their number 3, isn't that funny? How can we begin to expect anything from such a team that has a Hafeez at number 3? Number 3 is supposed to be the best batsman in a team but guess what? we got a Hafeez for Number 3. Dont look no further, people say we need a batting coach, I say we need a selector with good enough eye sight and a decent amount of brains. Azhar Ali is not the shining example but he's atleast new and not got as many chances as Hafeeze have in the past decade, he should have played ahead of our test number 3, which again, pains me to say is Hafeez. Selectors should know better, thats cricket 101 that micky mouse limited overs cricket is different from tests, Hafeez was never a test player, why not end this misery? Come on, out of 180 Million people there has to be better batsmen than him of course. And if we are going to lose, i'll be happy with losing with new players rather than watching this misery unfold time and again.

  • on January 13, 2014, 4:26 GMT

    Pakistan has to take responsibility for the loss. How long can they expect to get consistent results if the batting is not consistent? Anytime which loses 8 wkts for 58 runs can't expect to be considered in the top rung. In any test, when a team is a good one, there will be a few century makers in the team as the century indicates the team has players who have capacity to play long innings. Misbah and Younis could have went on to score centuries. a pragmatic approach is needed to see that Pakistan comes up with consistent batting performance in which the problems have to be identified from the root. It does not say nice about a team with good bowlers not being able to win a single test series for two years even though we know the team beat the world no: 1 team South Africa in a test and also won a ODI series against South Africa in South Africa. The problem is not lack of talent but the inconsistent performance.

  • outforhatrick on January 13, 2014, 3:48 GMT

    Nothing much to be disappointed for pak, wins and losses are part of the game. Srilanka have played 3 good sessions with bat in this series, which has brought this scoreline. Series between SL and Pak have historically been very competitive since 1995, so expecting Pak to Bounce back in 3rd Test. Above all i also agree pitches in all countries of sub-continent be prepared evenly so that asia teams start winning in SA and Aus. Something ICC can think about and make Pitch preparing Neutral for Test Cricket like all ICC events, which will negate home advantage and ensure more competitive Test Cricket.. hope someone in ICC takes note!!!

  • Fogu on January 13, 2014, 3:29 GMT

    Really funny comment by major. He wants to drop Misbah because he thinks Misbah is keeping the young guns out of the team. Really! There is no one in PK better than Misbah except younis. His record for the last two years speaks for itself. Unfortunately any young players PK has brought on has failed so far. There are a couple of good players that came but has not been consistent. Hafeez does need to be dropped. I think PK can go with Khurram, Shan, Azhar, Younis, Misbah, Asad and Sarfaraz. Gradually Maqsood and other young ones should be given a chance to replace Younis and Misbah in a couple of years.

  • Sachit1979 on January 13, 2014, 2:55 GMT

    All the Sri Lanka batsmen are in great form and all their fast bowlers are on the target. With a opposition in such a great form, it becomes really challenging to combat but still this can't be an excuse for Pak. Their batsmen other than Misbah and Younis have not been consistent enough for years now. Now its much more than a issue to be fixed. In bowling department also they were insipid after first inning of first test. It's good that team management is trying to develop a bowling all rounder in Bilawal for future but his utility in tests at this moment is debatable. Moreover Rahat can't be given more opportunities with Gul and Talha on bench. I hope Pak makes right adjustments in his lineup by bringing in Masood, Gul and Talha/Rehman before the last test and come back strong.

  • SL_Boy on January 13, 2014, 0:48 GMT

    Well done Sri Lanka, It is not the pitch we played really well, even when Mahelas got injured and last two innings he played so bad that went good for SL... he was batting only straight so end up getting 100, now we need one more spinner, someone have to go out get all round spinner in may be vice caption, how hook at tests.

    even in ODL SL was doing good until Gul show up.

  • on January 12, 2014, 23:00 GMT

    Can anyone in Pakistan tell me - are there many good young batsmen coming up in Pakistan? I'm noticing that the two stalwarts in the lineup are both older than I am... Which is not the best. Looking forward to seeing Pakistan a couple of times at my home ground in the World Cup!

  • on January 12, 2014, 22:54 GMT

    Pakistan's over reliance on Misbah and Younis has a lot to do with not giving confidence to younger batsmen, Umar Akmal being dropped from test squad, Azhar Ali now also getting the chop. there is enough batting talent in Pakistan but they need to be given extended runs. Azhar Ali being dropped for Hafeez was a very short sighted move. Azhar needed confidence and instead he got the chop. PCB needs to stop basing their decision on popular sentiment and instead base it on what's best for the national set up.

  • Herath-UK on January 12, 2014, 21:33 GMT

    I think Whatmore brought a lot of stability to the Pak team at a time when the team was in turmoil not many moons ago cricket & non cricket reasons. It suddenly lost the cream of good cricketers due to ICC bans and to get a team of this calibre from the low ebb it was is a testimony to good management & administration whatever said.In Misbah & Younis, there are two very good dependable batsmen I admire. It was just Sri Lanka surprised them with some good batting & bowling which Pak did not expect in their backyard. The third Test will be very intriguing with wounded Pak fighting to level the series. Ranil Herath - Kent

  • cricbon on January 12, 2014, 21:32 GMT

    Now Pakistan is looking sharjah, sharjah wicket is uneven in last days, so toss will be important, the batting first side will have soem advantage,if they can bat properly on merit. Pakistan must go with 2 or 3 change, Shan Masood and Abdul Rehman can replace Ahemd Shehzad and Bilawal Bhatti, who is injured. Asad shafiq can be next cut in squad but Pakistan has no proper replacement, Azhar Ali is misfit on No 6, because he plays intentionally slow, and No 6 batsman has to play with Tailenders and pace the scoreboard. Pakistan can go with Azhar but would not be fruitful, because Asad is definitely better batsman than Azhar. Pakistan Board should release all non playing Batsmen for Domestic Circuit, to get some Practice instead of watering to Fielders, like Australia. Australia never block non playing Batsmen on Bank !!! We need some realy professional approach.

  • on January 12, 2014, 21:32 GMT

    Wait for "disclosures" by PCB, Pakistani team and Whatmore after his departure. Gossip is i the air.

  • Major85D on January 12, 2014, 21:23 GMT

    As long as misbah is captain pakistan will never win a test series. He should retire as soon as possible, to make room for our good young players, like alam, maqsood and sohail. Misbah is blocking these players, because if they perform well, he will be out.

  • on January 12, 2014, 19:48 GMT

    bowling had issues in this game. no doubt. i agree pitch has support for fast bolwers on 1st day but 165 all out and that also after 107/2 and pkaying out 30 odd overs with new ball is very poor. it was very below par score. a collapse of 58/8 is definately the reason for loss. cant say that batting was ok and we lost because of bowling. bolwers cant fix the mess of batsmen all the time.

  • on January 12, 2014, 19:43 GMT

    I will sum up the match in one sentence. "Pakistan was playing not to loose and Sri Lanka was playing for Win" as long as misbah is there we will never win test series. mark my words.

  • mzm149 on January 12, 2014, 19:21 GMT

    What's the point of using UAE as home ground when PCB can't even prepare pitches according to their liking. Pakistan should request some other country like England or South Africa to let them host their home series even if pitches are not to our liking. These pitches are better than flat UAE pitches. Our players will get exposure on competitive pitches and will become technically sound.

  • on January 12, 2014, 18:58 GMT

    Congratulations Sri Lanka, you deserved to win this game, a lot of praise to you the way you dominated this game. Pakistan has some serious issues with their top order, like it's mentioned in the article. Hafeez has NO place in the test side, people who defend his ODI record, will have to answers these questions that how the same batsman who scored heavily against the same opponent, on the same pitches in ODIs is failed miserably in tests? He is flawed, get rid of him. Also Pakistan should not rely heavily on new comers (in bowling department), why not replace either Rahat Ali or Bhatti with Abdul Rehman? Bhatti has an edge over Rahat because of his batting. There are some serious changes to made before the next game, looking forward to a good contest. Good luck both of you.

  • cricbon on January 12, 2014, 18:47 GMT

    the Lost in Dubai against Sri Lanka is not a disaster for Pakistan Cricket but its a lesson for team management. Every one criticising the batsmen for bad show but I believe, the Lost came due to bad bowling. If we compare our bowling with SL bowling, we see clearly, SL bowlers did job exactly according to our batsmen weak area, out swing deliveries on Offstump or indipperss with swinging yorkers. Their Coach did job very well, but our bolwlers were extra ordinary indisciplined, I have not seen any single ball of Rahat Ali or Junaid Khan on yorker length, they were either short in Line or Length. Bilawal tried yorkers but his fitness in this test Match was doubtfull. The Wicket was Seamers friendly but only for disciplined, thats why Saeed Ajmal was in-effective. Bolwing Coach Mohd Akram is useless, because he does´nt know self the swing and seam, Aaqib jawed is best coach for seamers. Thats the Point !!!! Batsmen did well but they were targeted by SL bowlers correctly.

  • on January 12, 2014, 18:32 GMT

    run rate of 3 would have made no difference. the way SL chased and wicket was playing good on 5 th day, even 300 was chaseable with enough overs remaining.

    some times we are harsh on our team really. the only major thing was 165 in 1st innings.

    and they arent putting it on flat pitch. many of us are questioning about ajmal. and why pitches supporting fast bowlers then thats what he is saying here. that pcb is not making these wickets. i dont see anything wrong in saying that wickets were not up to our strength which is spin in last 2-3 year. Yes pak players played imran badly but so did they played fast bowlers. so have to choose1 of 2 . either spinning tracks or flat with some grass. or complete dead. in home series this is the major point.

    team selection though is questionable and simply wrong team. top3 and rahat were not good as well as asad. too many extra bagage.

  • amumtaz on January 12, 2014, 18:17 GMT

    Bring back Taufeeq Umar, Azhar Ali into the fold and drop Mohammad Hafeez for good this time. Hafeez is not likely to score big hundreds in Tests, especially against quality opposition.

    Taufeeq Umar is the only opener since Aamir Sohail (1992) to score a double century as an opener (2011). And that too against Sri Lanka. Leaving him and selecting green openers was a fatal blow for Pakistan.

  • Cricket_Only on January 12, 2014, 18:08 GMT

    Sr Lanka, you outplayed us in this game. Congratulation. Pakistani team Management time for you to win next game and say Bye to our coach DAVE WHATMORE. Please bring in Local Coach (Mohsiin Khan) and pick deserving player fr the team. FAWAD AALAM, Azhar Ali, and TALHA need to be in the team, Give Saeed Ajmal a well deserving time off until the 20-20 tournament.

  • VKohlitheGraet on January 12, 2014, 17:58 GMT

    Pakistan showed that they were willing to fight as a team by the way they batted in their second innings. They just have to select the right people for the weak players in the current team and I am sure they can bounce right back.

  • on January 12, 2014, 17:52 GMT

    then whats the use of playing home series if you cant dictate what sort of wickets you want. pcb should get a agreement with Uae cricket authority that pcb groundsmen will come and make it or at least team management will have a say in it. home advantage is how the wicket is made.

    anyway. poor performance with bat was a major worry. top 3 have poor technique which will fail 8/10 times against good bowling. rahat was passenger. and bhatti has speed but no line and length. what is bowling coach doing ?

    selecting wrong players was the issue. ahmed and hafeez were selected on basis of odi performance but failed. Azhar had poor year but he was selected on basis of some good recent domestic performances. you cant win matches if your top 3 are so weak. khurram scored 146 vs SA and after that getting out in almost same way. hafeez is sumply not made for tests. no 3 is a real big thing for him.

    too much dependece on ajmal back fired. he was off colour with no support from wicket as well.

  • gujratwalla on January 12, 2014, 17:43 GMT

    Pakistan were beaten by a better team simply.The Sri Lankan pace bowlers were far better than our trio,their fielding was sharper more engertic,the batsmen were more disciplined,patient and productive.Pakistan simply are no match for Sri Lanka in this format.Congratulations to The Lankans for their superb win.

  • on January 12, 2014, 17:38 GMT

    Misbah is responsible for this loss and not the flat pitch . Pitch didnt give a tame draw but a result . Any pitch that give result is considered good . The defencive mindset of misbah is casting pakistan winning a test series . If pakistan would have played talha instead of rahat we would have different story if pakistan would have a runrate of 3 in second innings we would have different result . Misbah wants spinning tracks despite knowing that lanka play spin better than pakistan . He has forgotten that imran tahir blown away pakistan team in dubai few months back on some reponsive track . The best solution for pakistan test team is that younis should be made captain and misbah his deputy . Hafeez should never be selected in tests and technically sound opener like taufiq umar shud be brought back plus azhar ali in place of asad shafiq .

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • on January 12, 2014, 17:38 GMT

    Misbah is responsible for this loss and not the flat pitch . Pitch didnt give a tame draw but a result . Any pitch that give result is considered good . The defencive mindset of misbah is casting pakistan winning a test series . If pakistan would have played talha instead of rahat we would have different story if pakistan would have a runrate of 3 in second innings we would have different result . Misbah wants spinning tracks despite knowing that lanka play spin better than pakistan . He has forgotten that imran tahir blown away pakistan team in dubai few months back on some reponsive track . The best solution for pakistan test team is that younis should be made captain and misbah his deputy . Hafeez should never be selected in tests and technically sound opener like taufiq umar shud be brought back plus azhar ali in place of asad shafiq .

  • gujratwalla on January 12, 2014, 17:43 GMT

    Pakistan were beaten by a better team simply.The Sri Lankan pace bowlers were far better than our trio,their fielding was sharper more engertic,the batsmen were more disciplined,patient and productive.Pakistan simply are no match for Sri Lanka in this format.Congratulations to The Lankans for their superb win.

  • on January 12, 2014, 17:52 GMT

    then whats the use of playing home series if you cant dictate what sort of wickets you want. pcb should get a agreement with Uae cricket authority that pcb groundsmen will come and make it or at least team management will have a say in it. home advantage is how the wicket is made.

    anyway. poor performance with bat was a major worry. top 3 have poor technique which will fail 8/10 times against good bowling. rahat was passenger. and bhatti has speed but no line and length. what is bowling coach doing ?

    selecting wrong players was the issue. ahmed and hafeez were selected on basis of odi performance but failed. Azhar had poor year but he was selected on basis of some good recent domestic performances. you cant win matches if your top 3 are so weak. khurram scored 146 vs SA and after that getting out in almost same way. hafeez is sumply not made for tests. no 3 is a real big thing for him.

    too much dependece on ajmal back fired. he was off colour with no support from wicket as well.

  • VKohlitheGraet on January 12, 2014, 17:58 GMT

    Pakistan showed that they were willing to fight as a team by the way they batted in their second innings. They just have to select the right people for the weak players in the current team and I am sure they can bounce right back.

  • Cricket_Only on January 12, 2014, 18:08 GMT

    Sr Lanka, you outplayed us in this game. Congratulation. Pakistani team Management time for you to win next game and say Bye to our coach DAVE WHATMORE. Please bring in Local Coach (Mohsiin Khan) and pick deserving player fr the team. FAWAD AALAM, Azhar Ali, and TALHA need to be in the team, Give Saeed Ajmal a well deserving time off until the 20-20 tournament.

  • amumtaz on January 12, 2014, 18:17 GMT

    Bring back Taufeeq Umar, Azhar Ali into the fold and drop Mohammad Hafeez for good this time. Hafeez is not likely to score big hundreds in Tests, especially against quality opposition.

    Taufeeq Umar is the only opener since Aamir Sohail (1992) to score a double century as an opener (2011). And that too against Sri Lanka. Leaving him and selecting green openers was a fatal blow for Pakistan.

  • on January 12, 2014, 18:32 GMT

    run rate of 3 would have made no difference. the way SL chased and wicket was playing good on 5 th day, even 300 was chaseable with enough overs remaining.

    some times we are harsh on our team really. the only major thing was 165 in 1st innings.

    and they arent putting it on flat pitch. many of us are questioning about ajmal. and why pitches supporting fast bowlers then thats what he is saying here. that pcb is not making these wickets. i dont see anything wrong in saying that wickets were not up to our strength which is spin in last 2-3 year. Yes pak players played imran badly but so did they played fast bowlers. so have to choose1 of 2 . either spinning tracks or flat with some grass. or complete dead. in home series this is the major point.

    team selection though is questionable and simply wrong team. top3 and rahat were not good as well as asad. too many extra bagage.

  • cricbon on January 12, 2014, 18:47 GMT

    the Lost in Dubai against Sri Lanka is not a disaster for Pakistan Cricket but its a lesson for team management. Every one criticising the batsmen for bad show but I believe, the Lost came due to bad bowling. If we compare our bowling with SL bowling, we see clearly, SL bowlers did job exactly according to our batsmen weak area, out swing deliveries on Offstump or indipperss with swinging yorkers. Their Coach did job very well, but our bolwlers were extra ordinary indisciplined, I have not seen any single ball of Rahat Ali or Junaid Khan on yorker length, they were either short in Line or Length. Bilawal tried yorkers but his fitness in this test Match was doubtfull. The Wicket was Seamers friendly but only for disciplined, thats why Saeed Ajmal was in-effective. Bolwing Coach Mohd Akram is useless, because he does´nt know self the swing and seam, Aaqib jawed is best coach for seamers. Thats the Point !!!! Batsmen did well but they were targeted by SL bowlers correctly.

  • on January 12, 2014, 18:58 GMT

    Congratulations Sri Lanka, you deserved to win this game, a lot of praise to you the way you dominated this game. Pakistan has some serious issues with their top order, like it's mentioned in the article. Hafeez has NO place in the test side, people who defend his ODI record, will have to answers these questions that how the same batsman who scored heavily against the same opponent, on the same pitches in ODIs is failed miserably in tests? He is flawed, get rid of him. Also Pakistan should not rely heavily on new comers (in bowling department), why not replace either Rahat Ali or Bhatti with Abdul Rehman? Bhatti has an edge over Rahat because of his batting. There are some serious changes to made before the next game, looking forward to a good contest. Good luck both of you.

  • mzm149 on January 12, 2014, 19:21 GMT

    What's the point of using UAE as home ground when PCB can't even prepare pitches according to their liking. Pakistan should request some other country like England or South Africa to let them host their home series even if pitches are not to our liking. These pitches are better than flat UAE pitches. Our players will get exposure on competitive pitches and will become technically sound.