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August 13, 2009
Younis Khan has taken responsibility for Pakistan's Test and ODI series defeats in Sri Lanka but has refused to resign from the captaincy. He had come under widespread criticism from the domestic media and former players, who also demanded major changes in the Pakistan Cricket Board's setup and asked the senior team management to take responsibility for the defeats. Younis has instead hit back at those who suggested he should step down.
"I accept the responsibility of defeat, but will not apologise to anyone nor will I resign as captain because it's part of the game to lose and win," Younis was quoted as saying by the Pakistan daily Jang. "I am trying my level best to lead the team and achieve the best results but some people want me to relinquish the captaincy, which I won't. Am I not a good captain or do I lack leadership qualities?"
Pakistan lost the three-Test series 0-2 and surrendered the ODI series with their third consecutive loss in the five-match series before saving face with wins in the last two ODIs. Younis singled out those two wins as proof that Pakistan could do well in Sri Lanka. "We won the last two one-day matches by huge margins, and it proved that the team had the capacity and the talent to win the Tests and one-day matches," he said. "But due to the batsmen's inconsistency, we failed to finish properly."
Younis, who returned to Pakistan after the ODI series, had earlier blamed a weak domestic setup as the reason for below-par performances in Sri Lanka. Reiterating that 'groupism' within the team had nothing to do with the team's poor showing on tour, Younis defended Pakistan's unity. "There were no differences in the team. In fact I can say that the team was never as united as it was during the Sri Lanka tour," he said.
Responding to accusations of match-fixing, Younis said: "Baseless allegations are affecting the team's performances. No one should doubt my integrity. I can never resort to any wrongdoing."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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