Pakistan News May 25, 2015

Misbah hopes to captain in home Test

ESPNcricinfo staff

Misbah retired from ODIs after Pakistan's World Cup quarter-final loss to Australia Saeed Khan / © AFP

Misbah-ul-Haq, who turns 41 on Thursday, expressed his wish to be able to lead Pakistan in a home Test before retiring. International cricket returned to Pakistan after a six-year hiatus, but Misbah, who retired from ODIs following Pakistan's World Cup quarter-final defeat to Australia in March, regretted not being a part of the current squad.

He praised Zimbabwe's decision to tour Pakistan and hoped that it would open the gates for other Test nations to make the trip in the near future.

"I would love to captain Pakistan in Tests at home before I retire," Misbah told cricket.com.au. "I hope soon some team will visit Pakistan and we will play a Test series here. Even during the matches against Zimbabwe I regretted not being part of the team.

"People have proved that cricket is still alive in Pakistan," he said. "The way fans have turned out to watch matches, despite searing heat and extraordinary security measures, it has strengthened the view that international cricket should be played here.

"The people of Pakistan have shown to world that they can't be kept away from cricket. We have given a very strong message to the world," he said. "Zimbabwe is not much popular as compared to other cricketing countries, (and) still the fans have come out in large numbers to support them. It shows how badly we were missing cricket."

"The government should take more steps to bring cricket in Pakistan."

Misbah said the home advantage could do wonders in nurturing the new upcoming talent in Pakistan cricket.

The series was received with extraordinary fervour and excitement in Pakistan. Fans with placards and posters that read "thank you Zimbabwe" were a common sight at the Gaddafi Stadium during the two T20Is. Though the talks for a Test series against India are under way, it is expected that they will play in the UAE, a neutral venue.

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