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Misbah critical of Pakistan batting failure

Umar Farooq

July 1, 2013

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Imran Farhat is bowled by Chris Morris, Pakistan v South Africa, Champions Trophy, Group B, Edgbaston, June 10, 2013
Misbah-ul-Haq: "The simple thing is that batsmen aren't able to handle themselves. There are technical faults and we need to address them." © AFP
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Misbah-ul-Haq, the Pakistan Test and ODI captain, has demanded that his underperforming batsmen step up and take responsibility after his team crashed out of the Champions Trophy in England following three successive defeats.

"I think our batsmen must understand their game, the conditions which they are facing and then apply themselves," Misbah said on his return from England. "It's the responsibility of the batsmen. It's not that we were short on practice. We did prepare well for the tour but conditions in England were tough and our batsmen couldn't handle them. I suppose that's been the one area where we've lacked - scoring consistent runs. We had these same batting problems on the South Africa tour so we now have to try to sort them."

Pakistan were sorely let down by their batsmen in the Champions Trophy. They failed to cross 200 - bowled out for 170 against West Indies, 167 against South Africa and 165 in a rain-affected match against India to get eliminated from the group stage. Only Misbah, the fifth-leading run-getter in ODIs this year with 548 runs, hit two half-centuries. The other senior batsmen Mohammad Hafeez, Imran Farhat, Shoaib Malik and Kamran Akmal performed poorly. Pakistan's batting was also found wanting on their tour of South Africa earlier this year, where they lost all three Tests and the one-day series 3-2.

Misbah insisted batting is a serious weakness Pakistan have to overcome as they look to build for the 2015 World Cup. "The simple thing is that batsmen aren't able to handle themselves. There are technical faults and we need to address them. Whenever we go abroad we will face such problems so we have to address them sooner or later. If we don't improve, don't learn, then such things will go on.

"We will have meetings in the next two-three days to finalise the team (for the West Indies tour). Changes are necessary and we have to sit down and discuss, make changes and plan who are the players to be groomed for the future. We can rebuild the team in the next two years by grooming players who are good enough.

"It's not like we are picking the wrong players. We always try to select players who are good for the team, players who can win us games. These are the same set of players who have won us games. But now that they have not performed, you are saying they were sifarshi [unmerited recommendation] players. This is not the issue, they have done well in the past as well."

Pakistan play five ODIs against West Indies starting July 14, the first two in Guyana and the remaining three in St Lucia. The ODIs will be followed by two Twenty20 internationals in St Vincent. Misbah was wary about the challenge in West Indies and believed the onus would be on his batsmen again.

"We will face slow pitches on the West Indies tour and need to graft our innings," Misbah said. "If the batsmen give the bowlers a total of more than 250 then they can win us matches. I think it will again be a test of our batting in the West Indies."

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

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by BillyBoi on (July 5, 2013, 15:11 GMT)

100% agree with "Avicenna", "Meety" that FAWAD ALAM is very talented cricketer. he reeds the situation & conditions in match very well and scores some crucial runs consistently. With regards to Imran Farhat- I think PCB wouldn't drop him from the team until he reach to his retirement age ( So peeps don't waste your energy-only waiting is the option). I don't know if you agree with me but I have seen Hammad Azam in couple of matches where he got a chance of facing only few balls but smashed them clearly and in my personal opinion he can be a promising allrounder in shorter form of Cricket. Good Luck Pak Cricket.

Posted by   on (July 3, 2013, 11:04 GMT)

Batting has been a long term concern for the team now, the bowling has been making up for their short comings and therefore masked the extent of the problem as well as the issue of dubious selection practices. Unfortunately it has taken a failure of massive proportions to really bring the selection issues to the fore. Let's hope some concrete steps are taken to fix the problem and move to merit based selection.

Our neighbours are a prime example of this, selection is now based on merit rather than reputation or anything else and they reaping the rewards. IPL has also had a role in this where it has showcased the talent, how come it took Dhawan so long to make his debut?

Posted by huhohuhohuho on (July 3, 2013, 10:03 GMT)

@nawaz ahmed your team has players who have retired and those who have not performed in the last 2year. We should include youngsters who can serve pakistan for 6-10 years. We should include players like sohaib maqsood,haris sohail and m. Rizwan

Posted by Sports4Youth on (July 2, 2013, 21:38 GMT)

Posted by Avicenna on (July 2, 2013, 20:23 GMT) :- Totally agreed with you.

Fawad Alam definately deserved to be selected ahead of Farhat & S.Malik.

.

Posted by   on (July 2, 2013, 21:30 GMT)

For successful team pak needs mix of talent as well as experienced and young talented players otherwise its not going to be good experience more importantly needs to see if there;s already talent being ignored for example Abdul Razzaq , Azhar Mahmood and so forth these are Good All-rounders and can easily play till WC2015 and young players can learn very much from these tested and proved performing players on any day. Dream Team in current crises would be in the playing batting order : 1)Afridi 2) Umar Amin 3) Fawad Alam 4) Mohammad Yusuf 5) Misbah 6) Abdul Razzaq (Captain) 7) Sarfraz/Umar 8) Hammad Azam 9)Sohail Tanvir 10)Saeed Ajmal 11) Mohammad Irfan

Player;s Part of the Squad Should be : Sharjeel Khan-Future Saeed Anwar , Nasir Jamshed, Asad, Wahab , Junaid, Ahmed Shahzad , Mohammad Hafeez , Azhar Mehmood, Younis Khan , Gul ,Azhar Ali

This is called TEAM Selection , this team is mixture of new & old talent and have both good batting line-up and six good bowlers.

Posted by   on (July 2, 2013, 21:27 GMT)

If Misbah ul Haq had big say in CT team selection process, then he should be dearly blamed for poor performance and should be looking to stepping down or at least keeping himself quiet as solely Team selection process lead to such failure. He has done well in past but his insecurity of talented senior players is his weak point. Abdul Razzaq is 100 times better player and proven talented performing player then Mohammad Hafiz who can only bat ion Asian pitches. Misbah ul Haq shouldn't have a say in selection process and Hafeez shouldn't be captain of T20 he doesnt deserve the place and i agree with most comments on this website .

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