Pakistan news September 25, 2010

'I am better than my stats suggest' - Sami

ESPNcricinfo staff
46

Mohammad Sami, the Pakistan fast bowler, is targeting a return to the national team for the series against South Africa in the UAE in October, and the World Cup early next year. Sami last made an international appearance in May, during the World Twenty20 in the Caribbean, and has been out of reckoning since. However, with the uncertainty over the availability of fast bowlers Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Asif following the spot-fixing controversy, Sami could be in the frame for a comeback.

"I've not taken much time off during the off season and have been working hard on my game at the Rashid Latif Cricket Academy, as well as training on my own," Sami told PakPassion.net. "I want to ensure that I am 100% ready when the new season starts. I am hopeful that the hard work will pay off and I can be given another chance for Pakistan."

Sami began his international career on a high, grabbing eight wickets on Test debut in 2001, against New Zealand in Auckland, and a hat-trick against Sri Lanka in Lahore in his third game. He formed a promising opening bowling combination with Shoaib Akhtar, and was tipped for a bright future, but failed to meet expectations, averaging 50.73 in 34 Tests to date.

"Sometimes statistics don't always tell the full story," Sami said. "I don't want to offer excuses, but those that have followed my career will appreciate that I have not had the best of luck. I am a better bowler than my statistics suggest and I will prove that in the coming months and years if given the opportunity.

Sami was dropped from the national team in 2007 and he went on to participate in the unauthorised Indian Cricket League before returning to the official fold. Since his return, he has played just one Test, the controversial defeat against Australia in Sydney in January. "I was given one opportunity in Australia and took three wickets in the first innings. I removed the top three Australian batsmen and felt in good shape, but then I never played in the next match. I'm desperate to be given another chance and to show what I can do, if given a decent run in the side."

Sami, currently the captain of the domestic team Karachi Blues, has a significantly better ODI record, averaging 28.44 for his 118 wickets. Selection to the 2011 World Cup squad means more to him than just making an international comeback. "The memory of the 2007 World Cup still haunts all of the squad," he said. The tournament itself was a disaster for Pakistan cricket and of course Bob Woolmer's death was heart-breaking for all of us. I want to put that terrible tournament behind me and to make the 2011 World Cup a success for Pakistan."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • bharath74 on September 29, 2010, 19:40 GMT

    Sami definitely deserves a place, he is not used properly by pak.

  • ahassan on September 29, 2010, 9:25 GMT

    To Shah-Ji, Please make your records and statistics correct. Which 12 test are you talking about when Sami brought Pakistan on the verge of victory. Sami never took 10W in a match in his 34 tests. In 62 innings he took 5W just twice against weak New Zealand sides and never against any other side, not even against Zimbabwe. If you think that a bowler can bring a side on the verge victory with two or three wickets in a match then you are sadly mistaken.In 1979/80 series against India Imran was the best Pakistani bowler even when he was half fit. He played in five test but bowled less than Sikander on bowler friendly wickets. Ehtishamiddin was the second best bowler of that series although he was given chance in three test only. I am not taking anything away from Sikander as he also bowled well and he was the third best bowler of Pakistan side. Sarfaraz was never selected for that series.

  • Toescrusher on September 28, 2010, 15:07 GMT

    Muddsar Nazar completed 100 weakets in ODI before Sarfraz and Imran does it mean Muddsar was a better bowler than Imran and Sarfraz? Any bowler who has shared new ball with 2Ws becomes an automatic choice for Pakistan's strike bowling.

    If Tendulker was ever used as a new ball bowler then comparison is correct other wise comparing Tendulker and Sami is like comparing Apple and Orange!

  • Shah-Ji on September 27, 2010, 23:50 GMT

    To"TOO MANY CHANCES..."

    Too many people talk of too many chances ,with out looking at facts.

    34 tests played ..in 12 tests He clearly brought Pakistan to Victory or on the verge of victory.............

    Does Imran, Shoaib , Fazal , Waseem or Waqar have this ratio. Only difference is that He did not declare himself unfit on batting paradise wickets . and Did get rare chances to bowl in Australia,Newzeland Engaln and South Africa. Whenevere He got ,He brought victory ......

  • thair9999 on September 27, 2010, 23:21 GMT

    Common, half of his (would be wickets) catches were dropped.

  • Toescrusher on September 27, 2010, 20:22 GMT

    "Sami is a better bowler than what his stats suggest" Mark Taylor - 2nd Test 2010 Sydney AUS

  • aamirah1 on September 27, 2010, 16:52 GMT

    Sami is trying out his luck now by claiming that he's working hard, poor him..He doesnt deserve a chance to come back to the team at all..He should be ashamed that mohammad amir became a better bowler than him and he's only 18,it needs one to put an effort and use their mind, where as sami got the opportunity to play with wasim, waqar and akhter at his peak. He still couldn't learn anything. He should forget about being back..8 years is too much i wouldnt have given him more than 3, after he started sucking big time.Remember batsmen do make mistakes and thats the only time he got wickets..thats why he has a over 50 average in 30 matches.I wouldnt disagree that he didnt bowl after sydney test but what did he do in sydney.Only 3 wickets?? Look at Asif and Amir, they get atleast a Five-for when they're bowling good.and consistent in second innings as well..Sami forget about it bro..Good luck in domestic, which aint quality Cricket

  • on September 27, 2010, 13:49 GMT

    we all knw hez capable of wonders but sorry to say at many ocassions he faild to perform he did bowld few falshy spells that brought wickets to Pakistan nd i thnk he derserve more chances caz i saw Shahid Nazir got destroyd due to lack of oppertunities

  • itshashim on September 27, 2010, 12:51 GMT

    Its a petty that Sami has more than 50 average as a new ball bowler in tests considering he has played for than 8 years of International cricket. I guess Sachin tendulkar as a part time bowler will have better average than Sami.

  • on September 27, 2010, 10:00 GMT

    m amir should be back in the team

  • bharath74 on September 29, 2010, 19:40 GMT

    Sami definitely deserves a place, he is not used properly by pak.

  • ahassan on September 29, 2010, 9:25 GMT

    To Shah-Ji, Please make your records and statistics correct. Which 12 test are you talking about when Sami brought Pakistan on the verge of victory. Sami never took 10W in a match in his 34 tests. In 62 innings he took 5W just twice against weak New Zealand sides and never against any other side, not even against Zimbabwe. If you think that a bowler can bring a side on the verge victory with two or three wickets in a match then you are sadly mistaken.In 1979/80 series against India Imran was the best Pakistani bowler even when he was half fit. He played in five test but bowled less than Sikander on bowler friendly wickets. Ehtishamiddin was the second best bowler of that series although he was given chance in three test only. I am not taking anything away from Sikander as he also bowled well and he was the third best bowler of Pakistan side. Sarfaraz was never selected for that series.

  • Toescrusher on September 28, 2010, 15:07 GMT

    Muddsar Nazar completed 100 weakets in ODI before Sarfraz and Imran does it mean Muddsar was a better bowler than Imran and Sarfraz? Any bowler who has shared new ball with 2Ws becomes an automatic choice for Pakistan's strike bowling.

    If Tendulker was ever used as a new ball bowler then comparison is correct other wise comparing Tendulker and Sami is like comparing Apple and Orange!

  • Shah-Ji on September 27, 2010, 23:50 GMT

    To"TOO MANY CHANCES..."

    Too many people talk of too many chances ,with out looking at facts.

    34 tests played ..in 12 tests He clearly brought Pakistan to Victory or on the verge of victory.............

    Does Imran, Shoaib , Fazal , Waseem or Waqar have this ratio. Only difference is that He did not declare himself unfit on batting paradise wickets . and Did get rare chances to bowl in Australia,Newzeland Engaln and South Africa. Whenevere He got ,He brought victory ......

  • thair9999 on September 27, 2010, 23:21 GMT

    Common, half of his (would be wickets) catches were dropped.

  • Toescrusher on September 27, 2010, 20:22 GMT

    "Sami is a better bowler than what his stats suggest" Mark Taylor - 2nd Test 2010 Sydney AUS

  • aamirah1 on September 27, 2010, 16:52 GMT

    Sami is trying out his luck now by claiming that he's working hard, poor him..He doesnt deserve a chance to come back to the team at all..He should be ashamed that mohammad amir became a better bowler than him and he's only 18,it needs one to put an effort and use their mind, where as sami got the opportunity to play with wasim, waqar and akhter at his peak. He still couldn't learn anything. He should forget about being back..8 years is too much i wouldnt have given him more than 3, after he started sucking big time.Remember batsmen do make mistakes and thats the only time he got wickets..thats why he has a over 50 average in 30 matches.I wouldnt disagree that he didnt bowl after sydney test but what did he do in sydney.Only 3 wickets?? Look at Asif and Amir, they get atleast a Five-for when they're bowling good.and consistent in second innings as well..Sami forget about it bro..Good luck in domestic, which aint quality Cricket

  • on September 27, 2010, 13:49 GMT

    we all knw hez capable of wonders but sorry to say at many ocassions he faild to perform he did bowld few falshy spells that brought wickets to Pakistan nd i thnk he derserve more chances caz i saw Shahid Nazir got destroyd due to lack of oppertunities

  • itshashim on September 27, 2010, 12:51 GMT

    Its a petty that Sami has more than 50 average as a new ball bowler in tests considering he has played for than 8 years of International cricket. I guess Sachin tendulkar as a part time bowler will have better average than Sami.

  • on September 27, 2010, 10:00 GMT

    m amir should be back in the team

  • Shah-Ji on September 27, 2010, 9:22 GMT

    :BOWLING AVERAGE:

    In 1979/80 India Tour Imran and Sarfraz declared themselves unfit ,Sikandar Bakht was the lone fighter . Although Imran stayed in India ,attended and made headlines for all the Bollywood and other glamorous parties but did not bowled. This technical approach brought them average under 30. Sikander has close to 40. Last tour of india ,He played in all test matches on placid pitches,where other pacers were unfit, and was the reason for Chennai Win although dumped his average. Do not forget his morning blast at Sydney and almost 12 other matches where either He brought victory or close to victory. and never claimed unfit. ready to bowl at any wicket.

  • Hassan_Mir on September 27, 2010, 8:50 GMT

    Too many chances have already been given to this guy . He is really lucky in that regard. Stats do NOT show the performance 100% but to some extent the stats show the correct picture. having an average of 50 in Tests is horrible and I think if he is given a chance, it would be a negative step in part of the selectors......

  • on September 27, 2010, 7:54 GMT

    Beside our personal likes and dislikes, one simply can't overlook the talent and experience Sami has got under his belt to win matches for Pakistan single handedly. Agreed, his performance deteriorated over the years but that can't be a justifiable reason to exclude him from the team when he is training hard and enthusiastic to play for the country.

    Moreover, we better lose matches and even series with honest players on the team than with a bunch of crooks who are too deceptive with the opponents in the filed and the country they represent.

    Sami deserves another chance!

  • on September 26, 2010, 22:47 GMT

    what happened to this guy? at one stage he was competeing with Akhter and Lee as the fastest bowlers in the world, and now he struggles to hit the 140s. I think he bulked up a little to much, to bowl pace you need the elbow to be flexible. Unless he goes all the way and get serious muscle like Tait, he wont be able to bowl fast again. Stats dont tell all the truth, but averaging 50 in 30 odd tests is horrible...

  • Hasso29 on September 26, 2010, 20:48 GMT

    He deserves a place in the squad

  • on September 26, 2010, 20:03 GMT

    i liked when he first came in the side.nice fast and wild....... but then they made him slow by training him

  • Shah-Ji on September 26, 2010, 17:24 GMT

    Out of 34 tests ,in 12 tests He brought or brought Pakistan close to victory including last appearance in Sydney,Not only He is the fastest bowler at the moment ,mercurially He is the fittest ,did We ever hear about his non fitness.

    He was the only Pak success in last world cup.

    criticizing with out reasoning or with out enough record is the easiest thing.

  • straight6 on September 26, 2010, 14:51 GMT

    Sami is no doubt a good bowler, but i'm afraid to say he has had no good captain to lead him.If Imran had sami, then i'm sure Sami would have been amongst Wasim and Waqar. Sami is a workhorse and always strikes to me as if he needs to be more encouraged before even bowling his first bowl. Sami is best suited in English conditions, and therefore i always seem to wonder why he didn't get regular stints at County cricket. He has done exceedingly well over the year leading Karachi, and together with leadership qualities, i feel he still has lots to offer no matter where in the world. Good luck SAMI.

  • usman_nile1994 on September 26, 2010, 14:40 GMT

    He his right that he his better than average (which i think is due to pak's fielding) but still he has given enough chances. He is a good bowler but not a typical dangerous Paki bowler. He could have been played 100 tests for India as they do not have good fast bowlers but Pak is the hub of fast bowiling so a youngster should be selected instead of 29 year old Sami. And please don't say me Lahori i m a Karachite.

  • shahab1987 on September 26, 2010, 14:02 GMT

    He has been tried and tested many times and he has failed at most times...He should never be included in the team...

  • on September 26, 2010, 12:40 GMT

    no way every time he is selected for a tour he performs short of the expectations and the result is after losing 1 or 2 matches he is seen sitting outside throughout the tour he lacks precision speed alone is of no use

  • chronike on September 26, 2010, 11:29 GMT

    he needs a hair cut for sure get em short, i always felt that his hair get in his way when he lets go of the ball during run up and that creates a waywardness in his pitching

  • on September 26, 2010, 11:18 GMT

    Mr.Sami should thank his stars that he was born in Pakistan, had he been born somewhere else he would have long been forgotten.Let him alongwith selectors carry out a deep introspection and see .. Did he really deserve all these chances!!. I really wonder why selectors dont show same attitude towards Asim Kamal, when definitely he can be of some great value to TEST cricket.

  • Stark62 on September 26, 2010, 11:06 GMT

    Please don't give this loser another chance!!!!

    Give someone like Junaid Khan (20 yrs) a chance who recently took 9 wkts (4 and 5) against SL A plus he can swing the bowl both ways, bowls around 141 kmph and has made a 77 in first class cricket which means he can bat.

  • on September 26, 2010, 10:09 GMT

    i guess asif is not as productive with white ball than he is with the duke ball. in this case sami can replace asif, partner with amir, and gul in the middle overs in seaming conditions, added with Abdur Rehman (Ajmal seems out of song recently) and Afridi will be lethal bowling attack from Pakistan

  • hanaz on September 26, 2010, 7:38 GMT

    M.Sami is an excellent cricketer he never should have been droped from the side he is a gr8 fast bowler with no luck imagine the person who has to deliver 13 wkt taking deliveries to get 1 wkt!!!!!!!!!!!!!! he should b a part of team Pakistan

  • on September 26, 2010, 6:35 GMT

    lol you need to swing the ball that you can come in pak team comon its not difficult try and and i am sure you will be in orrrrr there is alot more player who can swing and take that palce and i hope amir get clear from all stuff cause i love his bowling and come back soon to knock the world cricket players wickts in to the ground :)

  • on September 26, 2010, 6:16 GMT

    Good with new call in seaming conditions butt is will be a pathetic decision if he will be taken to dubai....it will be a bad decision not only for pakistan butt will also ruin samis last opportunity to prove himself.

  • Cricket_Man on September 26, 2010, 5:28 GMT

    Sami, when started his international career seemed to most of us as a great find for Pakistan.However, with time he lost his form and eventually was an in-and-out cricketer. One thing he needs to learn from Shoaib Akhtar is how to bowl wih line and length along with pace.This was shown by Shoaib in the recently concluded ODI's against England. Sami's greatest problem is that he doesn't have a consistent line and length perhaps because he is abit too impatient. After bowling five good bowls he delivers a bad one which eventually is dispatched for runs with the help of his pace. This shows that he is a good bowler but he isn't temperamentally strong enough to cope with the pressure's of international cricket. He gets under pressure and then instead of thinking of taking wickets tries to stop the scoring which isn't his thing.Hopefully, if given chance, he overcomes these problems and performs like the Sami we all thought of as a bright future for Pakistan.

  • waqar.cz on September 26, 2010, 3:45 GMT

    bowling average 50 hahaahah

    stats suggest the right thing......

  • on September 25, 2010, 21:49 GMT

    Sami is an excellent athlete , very fit runs fast, good fielder and not a bad lower bad batsman. Unfortunately he cant swing the ball at all. Up and down quick only. I suggest that he should work hard for the next Olympics to run the 100 meter sprint and stop targeting the world cup 2011. Please stop the trend of playing the aging fast bowlers one is enough. Where is anwar ali, what about muhammed rameez. Since the world cup is in subcontinent we should look up for a spinner, preferably a wrist spinner who can bamboozle the betting line up because of the surprise element. Mansoor amjad, and qadir son should be considered.

  • on September 25, 2010, 19:33 GMT

    You are far worse than what your stats suggest. Rana Naved is far better than you.

  • on September 25, 2010, 19:07 GMT

    yes he does have pace. he doesnt have control or the magic delivery often bowled by akhtar. his bowls pitch and they dont do nothing. no swing no movement

  • on September 25, 2010, 19:05 GMT

    Well I personally believe sami has no chance in pak side, he was given so many chances but failed to proved him self as a strong bowler. Even he has advantage to open the bowling attack in the absence of amir and asif but i think he will fail again. I hope best of luck for sami cause no one can tak asifs and amirs place.

  • koi1 on September 25, 2010, 17:47 GMT

    he is worse than his stats suggest

  • FaisalAsghar on September 25, 2010, 17:32 GMT

    LOL LOL LOL LOL LOL.....how can it be made clear to mr.sami that he can pretend to be a fast bowler but in reality he is just an ordinary paceman. pitching up half vollies without any thought is a crime, and yes the stats DO tell the truth!!! dont bother too much, Pak mashallah is the worlds most resourceful bowlers factory.

  • Toescrusher on September 25, 2010, 17:14 GMT

    Sami beats Irfan on merit without any doubt. It is PCB's favoritism which brought Irfan in being a tall is not the only criteria for fast bowling Irfan need to work really hard specially on bowling action, delivery stride & fielding before he could become a reasonable bowler on this level. Sami is a far better fielder & batsman then Irfan also if nourished he could become a decent alrounder as well. Sami is facing almost same challenge which Md.Zahid & Md.Akram faced both were world class bowlers but because of very high bowling standard in Pakistan they could not solidify their positions. However Sami is little luckier then Md.Zahid & Md.Akram. Knowing Pakistan's strengths is bowling if we put our laser focus on 2nd & 4th innings chase of 300 runs ODI & Test then not only we will enjoy T20 top ranking but also we will enjoy top ranking of Test & ODI as well. Influential players like Rashid Latif must force PCB to choose batsmen who can chase in 2nd & 4th inning with very cool head.

  • --.-- on September 25, 2010, 16:49 GMT

    Clever guy. He knows if Asif and Amir don't return then he is the only experienced bowler left after Akhtar and Gul. So why not knock the doors of PCB.

  • A.R.Zaidi on September 25, 2010, 16:31 GMT

    Sami must be considered for all future series. He should learn to swing the ball both ways and bring variety in his bowling. Lacking variety he is a useless bowler, only having pace. He should try to improve himself which he could not despite many chances given to him.

  • on September 25, 2010, 16:30 GMT

    i think mohammad sami gout a big big opportunity to become a regular fast bowler in the absence of Mohammad Ameer,and Mohammad Asif.but he should have to show a big show in this series against SouthAfrica next month..

  • Dutch_Pakii_Samia on September 25, 2010, 15:04 GMT

    aankhein band karke aaja! XD

  • on September 25, 2010, 14:53 GMT

    We got rid of this short pitched nuthead bowler and feel better without him. Pakistan fast bowling attack is quite balanced and have enough bench strength. U. Gul, M. Irfan, S. Akhtar, M. Tanvir, Sohail Tanvir, Wahab Riaz, M. Talha etc. He shouldn't be back at any cost and better enjoy first class cricket. He was never a test or ODI material.

  • on September 25, 2010, 14:50 GMT

    Sami was tried time and again but he failed to materialise those opportunities. Pakistan is not deficit in talent so soon we will have young guns replacing Aamir and Asif.

  • on September 25, 2010, 14:26 GMT

    Whoever says Pak has a weak bowling attack obviously did not watch the recent series vs England. Akthar, Gul and co gave all sorts of problems to England and even without Aamer and Asif, the bowling line up allowed Pakistan to win a couple of matches. Having said that, it would be nice to see Sami be given one last chance, although this man has received numerous chances to prove himself. It would be interesting to see him bowl up front with Akthar, two bowlers with serious genuine pace. However, who can he replace? Razzak is still a proven batsman and a useful bowler, and Akthar and Gul at this point are untouchable, unless you talk about tests.

  • Nipun on September 25, 2010, 13:34 GMT

    These players like Sami,Ashraful,etc.are only good at offering excuses & saying that statistics don't tell the full story.Crap!

  • on September 25, 2010, 13:17 GMT

    sami should be back as pak bowling attack is weak and inexperienced

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  • on September 25, 2010, 13:17 GMT

    sami should be back as pak bowling attack is weak and inexperienced

  • Nipun on September 25, 2010, 13:34 GMT

    These players like Sami,Ashraful,etc.are only good at offering excuses & saying that statistics don't tell the full story.Crap!

  • on September 25, 2010, 14:26 GMT

    Whoever says Pak has a weak bowling attack obviously did not watch the recent series vs England. Akthar, Gul and co gave all sorts of problems to England and even without Aamer and Asif, the bowling line up allowed Pakistan to win a couple of matches. Having said that, it would be nice to see Sami be given one last chance, although this man has received numerous chances to prove himself. It would be interesting to see him bowl up front with Akthar, two bowlers with serious genuine pace. However, who can he replace? Razzak is still a proven batsman and a useful bowler, and Akthar and Gul at this point are untouchable, unless you talk about tests.

  • on September 25, 2010, 14:50 GMT

    Sami was tried time and again but he failed to materialise those opportunities. Pakistan is not deficit in talent so soon we will have young guns replacing Aamir and Asif.

  • on September 25, 2010, 14:53 GMT

    We got rid of this short pitched nuthead bowler and feel better without him. Pakistan fast bowling attack is quite balanced and have enough bench strength. U. Gul, M. Irfan, S. Akhtar, M. Tanvir, Sohail Tanvir, Wahab Riaz, M. Talha etc. He shouldn't be back at any cost and better enjoy first class cricket. He was never a test or ODI material.

  • Dutch_Pakii_Samia on September 25, 2010, 15:04 GMT

    aankhein band karke aaja! XD

  • on September 25, 2010, 16:30 GMT

    i think mohammad sami gout a big big opportunity to become a regular fast bowler in the absence of Mohammad Ameer,and Mohammad Asif.but he should have to show a big show in this series against SouthAfrica next month..

  • A.R.Zaidi on September 25, 2010, 16:31 GMT

    Sami must be considered for all future series. He should learn to swing the ball both ways and bring variety in his bowling. Lacking variety he is a useless bowler, only having pace. He should try to improve himself which he could not despite many chances given to him.

  • --.-- on September 25, 2010, 16:49 GMT

    Clever guy. He knows if Asif and Amir don't return then he is the only experienced bowler left after Akhtar and Gul. So why not knock the doors of PCB.

  • Toescrusher on September 25, 2010, 17:14 GMT

    Sami beats Irfan on merit without any doubt. It is PCB's favoritism which brought Irfan in being a tall is not the only criteria for fast bowling Irfan need to work really hard specially on bowling action, delivery stride & fielding before he could become a reasonable bowler on this level. Sami is a far better fielder & batsman then Irfan also if nourished he could become a decent alrounder as well. Sami is facing almost same challenge which Md.Zahid & Md.Akram faced both were world class bowlers but because of very high bowling standard in Pakistan they could not solidify their positions. However Sami is little luckier then Md.Zahid & Md.Akram. Knowing Pakistan's strengths is bowling if we put our laser focus on 2nd & 4th innings chase of 300 runs ODI & Test then not only we will enjoy T20 top ranking but also we will enjoy top ranking of Test & ODI as well. Influential players like Rashid Latif must force PCB to choose batsmen who can chase in 2nd & 4th inning with very cool head.