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Pakistan cricket

September 11, 2013

Mediocrity isn't helping Pakistan

Ali Umair Chaudhry


Shoaib Malik powers one down the ground, India v Pakistan, 1st T20, Bangalore, December 25, 2012
Pakistan must get rid of the notion that performance against India is the sole benchmark for selection © BCCI
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What makes a team great? Throughout history, it has been the desire of the most ambitious of men to mould a group towards a certain idealistic perception of excellence. From Plato to the Third Reich, excellence has been a muse for mankind in pursuits virtuous or otherwise.

This quest had carried on into the endeavour of professional sport, and fortunately, with results far less gruesome - if one can overlook Buzkashi, Afghanistan's version of Silence of the Lambs.

As in all other activities, very rarely is excellence achieved in competitive sport where the individual units (players) of a combined whole (team) are comprised of an unexceptional quality. There have been few rare cases that implore us to think otherwise, but this is essentially in sports where the very nature of the game allows individual brilliance to decisively fashion the difference between two sides. Michael Jordan's six championships with the Chicago Bulls were the result of one man's paramount ability and drive over his contemporaries. Pippen was classy, Rodman was effective, but the rest of the roster was quite pedestrian.

Cricket, and especially Test cricket, is no basketball; it is a fundamentally different game in temperament and structure. In cricket, the cumulative tally of individual statistical output is much more vital here than 'team chemistry' or the dominance of one or two people. Yes, a record-breaker like Muttiah Muralitharan can single-handedly win you a Test every now and then; but Murali, and the three other world-class performers in the Sri Lankan outfit from the last decade, couldn't transform their team into consistent winners.

The schoolyard bullying of the 90s Australian era was not a work of probability. You may cast votes for hard work, team chemistry and the Australian domestic cricket structure. But more than any other factor, the reason for their success was the irrefutable fact that a majority of their players were (or went on to become) naturally gifted individuals with an array of personal glories and achievements; each capable of being marketed as a superstar of the modern game. From a similar standard, the recent rise of South Africa is no surprise.

It's an interesting exercise to look at the current Pakistan squad in this context. The fact remains that this Pakistani outfit, despite some recent success, is a tragedy in waiting. Pakistan's recent triumphs were in spin-friendly conditions where even the most undistinguished Pakistani batsmen have historically held their own. If each match in the next few years is in similar conditions, Pakistan may be fairly confident of a fair bit of success. But a very simple lesson from history could be learnt just about right now. To be a good side, you must have players that are capable of excellence in all conditions.

The first anomaly to this clause is Mohammad Hafeez, perhaps the most inflexible opener to have survived for so long. An average under 29 at a strike-rate in the low 70s would not have been acceptable even in the 90s. Not only does Hafeez score very little, he does it at a detrimental rate. Most of his centuries have been against Bangladesh, Zimbabwe and an Indian bowling unit a tad better than the one in Lagaan. Against any half-decent bowling unit, Hafeez is an eyesore. He premeditatedly defends countless deliveries, good and bad, hits a couple of solid strokes, and gets out. While it may just make a little sense to have him as a lower-order ODI allrounder, he doesn't merit automatic selection in any other format. .

Not too long ago, Pakistan's opener alongside Hafeez was Imran Nazir, the poor man's Shahid Afridi. Yes, that is a lot of batting poverty. There are great strikers of the cricket ball (think MS Dhoni) and then there are those, who like Nazir, are just strikers.

Then there is Sohail Tanvir. The most Sohail can achieve considering his erratic control over the cricket ball at this ripe old age is to round up a 33-35 Test match bowling average. Is this the statistical output for the spearhead of a bowling dynasty?

Which brings me to the fundamental question here: why surround yourself with players who have not only been unable to show sufficient talent to the naked eye (no one questions the talent of an Umar Akmal) but have persistently handed out pedestrian statistical output? Who ever raised a Rome with an army of Hun tribesmen? Or is it that we do not want to construct a Rome, and are content with our little village?

Mohammad Yousuf is perhaps classiest batsman the country has ever produced. A 52.29 average with 24 centuries in 90 Tests ranks him with the best. A player of his class being sidelined at the peak of his powers due to any reason in a team with a defenseless batting lineup is unacceptable. Unless Yousuf has a knack for stealing cricket bats in the dressing room during the tea interval, there seems to be very little in wasting such a player due to disagreements with previous board employees and players who have probably made a fraction of his contribution to the game.

Pakistan, like any team, or sporting unit, will ideally want a team that continues winning over a succession of years, perhaps the better part of a decade. That should provide reason to the method and madness employed every day by employing thousands of employees and spending billions of taxpayer rupees into the cricketing infrastructure. Additionally, Pakistan must get rid of the notion that performance against India is the sole benchmark for selection, as proven by the persistent selections of Salman Butt and Shoaib Malik over the years.

Pakistan certainly is not without talent. Nasir Jamshed and Ahmed Shahzad are ample proof of this. They are extremely talented individuals who often fail to make the team due to the opener's spot being reserved for the likes of Imran Farhat and Hafeez.

My query to those who question selection based on pure statistics and the visual aura of a player is: what else is to be the criterion? Is it an innate talent in chewing gum? Or the subtlety with which a player enters the good books of Misbah-Ul-Haq?

Cricket is a team sport where success lies more on the sum of individual productivity in comparison to harmony in operation. When a batsman goes out to the crease, he must face the delivery and perform alone. It is time the country's cricket board looks at the composition of the team from a long-term point of view. Are we just looking towards chance and Saeed Ajmal to help us win the next series or are we looking to mould a team of extremely talented individuals, each capable of turning the game on its head?

Pakistan just might win a few more series, or they might not; either way, Dale Steyn on a Johannesburg pitch would almost always dismiss Hafeez for very little. In the long run, and in formats where a couple of talented players cannot always win you an entire match, we might be headed towards a big disappointment.

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Posted by   on (September 13, 2013, 6:46 GMT)

We never c Australian Fawad Ahmed in Pakistan . But see Australians are more capable to find talent even in pakistan they found it and took it... Shame on you pakistani selectors

Posted by   on (September 13, 2013, 6:34 GMT)

@asim229 remove dhoni and India would be a b grade team? Man, you seriously have some issues about having knowledge about cricket...

There are at least three members in Indian team who can take over the reigns of captaincy from Dhoni and be good at the task... Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and make sure that the difference between the quality of Indian unit and that of pakistan is maintained for years to come.

The problem is ... as much as you guys were better than us in 90's (that too at imes)... you have failed to beat us in any WC match... and I am sure you know that Dhoni was not the part of all those matches...

You guys fear the Indian factor and can never stand to the fact that this team is outdoing you in every department now

Posted by venkatesh018 on (September 13, 2013, 5:47 GMT)

An excellent article straight from the heart. I have doubts over just two issues: is Mohammad Yousuf still willing and fit to play for Pakistan? Why so much hatred for Imran Farhat- He bats better than both Hafeez and Khurram Manzoor.

Posted by jimbond on (September 13, 2013, 5:32 GMT)

"Pakistan must get rid of the notion that performance against India is the sole benchmark for selection" Very aptly put! I can add a few more names that stayed on only because they had an occasional success against India- players like Kamran Akmal, Gul, hardly deserved the long run that they got in test and ODIs. Nows a chance to recoup. Amir's ban should be almost through-that should remove any problems in bowling. Yes, talent is the key word- talented guys should be given a longer run. Players like Umar Akmal, Jamshed. Shehzad also looks a long term prospect. Pakistan certainly have a good core of a team that can become very good if nurtured for a couple of years.

Posted by   on (September 12, 2013, 21:20 GMT)

The writer's opinion is 100% correct. Pakistan needs to keep the naturally talented Umer Akmal, Ahmed Shehzad , Haris, Adnan Akmal & Nasir Jamsher in all the versions of the game and set aside Hafeez, Imran Farhat, Sarfraz, Khurrum , Asad Shafiq as they have basic flaws . Bowling, once great advantage has become a big concern. We must loccate the raw hand talent on Tehsil & district level to earn some respect in the game.

Posted by zarasochozarasamjho on (September 12, 2013, 17:03 GMT)

Test position of 4 is flattering for Pakistan. With poor fielding and poor batting, excluding Misbah (who is a genius in consistency - but has as his biggest and only fault being the inability to rotate batting), this team deserves a test position no higher than 5th. It will get there may be after this series and definitely 6th or 7th position after test series with South Africa next month, as the positios between 4th and 7th are within 4 points.

Posted by pintu01 on (September 12, 2013, 16:48 GMT)

Pakistan team has been always ruined by the politics of the team management. Is it not a pity that a great player like Mohammad Yusuf is sitting on the bench?...many young players can learn from his as well. The President should step in to get rid of the selection team!

Posted by Morfi on (September 12, 2013, 15:39 GMT)

Well spotted @irishwolfhound! It has become a fashion of late, to citicise every move on or off the cricket field by the Pakistani team. This test team is the same that beat England 3-0 just over a year ago. And talking of Salman Butt, Imran farhat and the likes is useless. Let us, for once, concentrate on the positives...

Posted by   on (September 12, 2013, 13:44 GMT)

@Posted by asim229 on (September 12, 2013, 4:44 GMT): I do agree with other stuff. But about openers i dont, the openers you are referring to who have changed their approach because of misbah were slow in their whole career. Ahmed has list A strike rate of 76. Misbah can change them in odis but what about domestic. Domestic is a relatively easy level. How can we expect some 1 to score at 100+ SR if he was not able to do that on Flat wickets in Pakistan?

Problem is that these young players we are testing are not that good. Just because of t20 or 1 off innings we think they are super aggressive & great players. Real domestic performers are being ignored. Very good example in this squad. Shaan is way down in the list of good domestic openers. I am also of the view that they should test youngsters but atleast select those who are doing some good at domestic level.

Posted by   on (September 12, 2013, 13:12 GMT)

Excellent analysis Ali, right on target. The problem is that we are nurturing a culture that kills talent. Its been there since the early days of Pakistan's cricketing history but now its more painful to witness the Misbah version of slow death on TV , whether one day International or a five day test match.

Posted by asim229 on (September 12, 2013, 4:44 GMT)

@Khurram S Chaudary.I think cricket is the game in which team management and captain matters a lot.e.gindian team is no1 today only because of Ms.dhoni. If you remove Ms from captaincy then indian team will again become a b grade team of 90s.Look at Imran khan how he managed to make a team of youngsters a world beater team in 80s and 90s.I think nobody knows that Misbah also have a record of captaining pakistan in most number of consecutive matches I think 53 consecutive ODI etc.This is only because they dont want someone else to captain even in one match bcse if the other person succeeds then everyone will know that hafeez and misbah are useless and we can have better leader so the play even injured.I agree that openers also play slow but why bcse they themselves told that misbah hve told them to block the first ten overs to see off the new ball but unfortunately they get out after ten overs.Misbah is only able to score those 100 ball 50s bcse he bats at 5.

Posted by   on (September 12, 2013, 4:27 GMT)

I shall agree with most of the conclusions made by the writer. First of all the major problem which exists in the Pakistani ranks is the under utilization of few players. In the recent series, Umar Amin and Ahmed shehzad were the part of playing 11 for almost all the games but none of them got a chance to bowl a single over when both are capable enough to bowl 5,6 overs in between them. If the captains won't try them in these capacities, how would we develop the replacement of Afridi and Razzaq for our cause? Dhoni did the right work by using Yuvraj, Sehwag, Raina, R.Sharma and Jadeja despite of so much criticism and today its paying! Our captains should be brave enough at first position Secondly, against Southafrica test series, Nasir Jamshed and Taufeeq Umar are the best opening options we can use. Azhar, Younis, Misbah, Asad, Adnan makes a better middle and late unit with Gul, Junaid, Rehman and Ajmal the bowlers and in ODIs and T20s, Shehzad, Umar Amin and Umar Akmal must be there

Posted by asim229 on (September 12, 2013, 4:17 GMT)

@Khurram S Chaudary.I think cricket is the game in which team management and captain matters a lot.e.gindian team is no1 today only because of Ms.dhoni. If you remove Ms from captaincy then indian team will again become a b grade team of 90s.Look at Imran khan how he managed to make a team of youngsters a world beater team in 80s and 90s.I think nobody knows that Misbah also have a record of captaining pakistan in most number of consecutive matches I think 53 consecutive ODI etc.This is only because they dont want someone else to captain even in one match bcse if the other person succeeds then everyone will know that hafeez and misbah are useless and we can have better leader so the play even injured.I agree that openers also play slow but why bcse they themselves told that misbah hve told them to block the first ten overs to see off the new ball but unfortunately they get out after ten overs.Misbah is only able to score those 100 ball 50s bcse he bats at 5.

Posted by Zahidsaltin on (September 12, 2013, 2:59 GMT)

FACT is that our bowling hasn't decieved us until now and it still keeps us floating. Even the future looks to be bright with Mohammed Amer, Junaid, Irfan and Gul with pace and Raza Hasan getting better and better and should be ready to take over in 3 years time when Ajmal decides to hang his boots. We could need an offi but I'm sure, one will just surface in time. The batting is a very big concern as when Misbah and Younis depart, we are worst than bangladesh if no new talent is unearthed. PCB, for me stands for destruction of the game in Pakistan with most of its policies. Firstly, we need to send a lot of A-teams every year to England, SA and AUS so that our youngester get used to play the moving balls. But PCB is a total failure here. Secondly, practice of keeping the mediocre batsmen hanging on for decades, should be stopped i.e Hafeez, Farhat, Faisal Iqbal etc. Give chances to Haris, Amin and Usman Salahuddin in odd series so that they can prove their abilities.

Posted by Hassan_Ayaz on (September 12, 2013, 2:41 GMT)

Given chance to Taufeeq Umer at the place of Muhammad Hafeez vs SA and SL.

Posted by syed.r.karim on (September 12, 2013, 1:38 GMT)

Hafiz should be brave hearted like Afride. He never have test playing material , he should concentrate in short format , this will good for him as well as Pakistan also. Opening is bigger issue in every team, south Africa have tried with Mckenzie, Rudolph and now they got Alviro Petersen as a permanent basis. Australia has tried with warner, EJM Cowan and now they got crish Rogers as permanent basis. India have tried with Dhawan and succeed, England still finding cook's partner. So, one thing is very clear for every successful opener, they are all mature and got amounts of run in their domestic series.So, Pakistan should experiment with experience mature batsman like Alviro Petersen , crish Rogers , Dhawan

Posted by saif.h.siddiqui on (September 12, 2013, 0:21 GMT)

I'm sorry, does the author mean to say that mediocrity has helped different teams in history, but hasn't helped Pakistan of late?

Posted by Morfi on (September 11, 2013, 22:39 GMT)

Well, the author clearly has no problem with expression but unfortunately, good english without substance hardly holds merit. On one occasion he tries to differentiate cricket as a team sport from other individualistic ones and on the other he makes individual talent as the prime reason for Australian success. The material and examples are sort of outdated and seem to compare apples and oranges.

Might i remind readers that if Pakistani players accused of scoring on flat tracks at home, other teams have similar home advantages. Also, for info, look at Younis Khan as being just behind bradman in scoring most away match saving/winning hundreds excluding Ban and Zim. The problem is with the Board that doesnt give talented players a decent run and the mindsets of players liek Yousuf who play politics and destroy their careers. Akram, Saleem Malik Waqar they all retired prematurely due to feuds and infighting etc. They would have ruled the stats even more if not for their own probs.

Posted by   on (September 11, 2013, 22:08 GMT)

For your information Chaudhury, the same Indian bowling attack you so demean, comparing it to the one in Lagaan, won India the Champions Trophy in England! And, don't forget, before England and then SA received the Test Mace India held it for longer than both these teams! BTW, India are the No-1 ODI team, 'in spite of having 'a bowling unit a tad better than the one in Lagaan!'

Posted by soaf on (September 11, 2013, 21:24 GMT)

i think we aren't producing explosive talent which we were used to produce throughout 80's and 90's. not only our administrators should be blamed for this but surprisingly our younger generation also has a part in it.cricket in pakistan is loosing its popularity among youngsters.today i dont see kids playing in the street of karachi as passionately it was during the 90s.the passion of game is dwindling.football has become the most discussed sport among youngsters because it gives them the true BURGER sense by gossiping about million dollar transfers and these gossiping they feel superior from others.while cricket has became the sport for kids hailing from lower classes. thats why we see lots of players in the team are coming from underdeveloped regions of country.it is sad to see karachi which was considered as hub for producing great batsmen such as miandad and zahher abbas hasnt been able to produce a single world standard batsmen.

Posted by Q_Man on (September 11, 2013, 20:58 GMT)

While scrolling through the comments section it becomes apparent that once again the Pakistan cricket fans have no idea what they are talking about and base selection on emotion. Someone said Muhammad Yusuf wasn't as great a batsmen as he is. It's a shame when some get picked over others due to politics in the PCB. If given the amount of backing that Malik/Farhat/Hafeez/Taufeeq/Tanvir got this man would have rivaled the best in all formats. Long live Yusuf's legacy because he certainly wont be playing any longer.

Posted by Tornado1 on (September 11, 2013, 20:30 GMT)

Spot on Mr. Writer. The problem with the comment section is since people esp pakistani ppl know nothing about cricket. I have serious doubts about even Pakistani Cricketers, they are talented but with no understanding. Hafeez, I.Nazir, Afridi the batter, Shoaib Malik, Sohail Tanvir were always 2nd rate cricketers, good for T20's may be, but no way even in ODI's, forget about the tests. I second your views about most of the players but Mohd. Yousuf and Nasir Jamshed. Yousuf's great statistics are due to his performances against weaker sides or on flat tracksl, but nevertheless in current crop, he is better than the rest. I guess Younis Khan is the best after Inzi esp if you consider his performance against 2nd/4th innings, or even against good sides at tougher conditions. Jamshed looks good at flat tracks or against weaker bowling units even in ODI's. In England and S.Africa he failed miserably, so too early to judge anything, but doesn't look good against the moving ball.

Posted by Zachery9000 on (September 11, 2013, 18:12 GMT)

a very well written article...have to agree with a lot of the stuff written here. i do think hafeez is worthy of a place though, but everything else makes sense. SENSE is a thing missing in india, pakistan and sri lankan (and west indies) cricket when it comes to selection..

Posted by malepas on (September 11, 2013, 17:24 GMT)

Don't understand what exactly the point writer is trying to make, Yousaf got lost due to his own stupidity by taking very silly decisions, signing CPL, not playing first class etc, yes Hafeez has now over welcomed his stay in the test side, probably management grooming him to take over from Misbah, that's why giving him chances, the problem is really who will take over from Misbah in tests, I think PCB should invest in somebody like Asad shafiq, who has a good head and good player. This will be a long term strategy, at least he deserve his place in the side. Hafeez should just play ODI and t20's but should bat at no-6 in ODI's. This pak team needs a batsman like Umer Akmal to play at no 5, which will give some power in this very docile test batting lineup. Toufeeq/Jamshed/ahmed shehzad/khurram should be invested as openers.Pak needs GUL back as right handed bowlers is missing.The thing I hate to see is the fielding of these so called "youngsters" Rahat ali is not ready yet for tests.

Posted by   on (September 11, 2013, 17:03 GMT)

Hafeez should not be in test side. But in odis & t20. he will make in most of sides because of his bowling. he is in top 10 bowlers & allrounders. He can play down the order though.. His record speaks something else. His career average in odis is low because of his 1st outing. his 2nd arrival has a very impressive numbers. In tests though, he should be dropped no doubt. But will be hard to do because of his politics. Misbah cant do it.

Sohail is i think always considered a t20 specialists and did very much well recently. salman butt is past. Malik is yes i think selected on basis of india. BUt i dont think misbah has much say in selection.

Problem is mostly with the choice of players we are bringing up. Our youngsters ( given chance so far ) have not been up to mark. the ones who are star performers on domestic level have never been selected. A very recent example is Shaan as opener. He is way down in the list of opners doing well in 1st class.

Posted by   on (September 11, 2013, 16:54 GMT)

@asim229: team management or captain may not matter much if we bring in really good players. we need good balance in a player. Like Kohli. He can go ballistic & can stay for 50 overs. But we as a fan have different views on some players. like Ahmed shehzad always hailed as very aggressive player & people say that his style changed because of misbah, ahmed has List A career strike rate is 76. just 2 points above misbah. so how can he be aggressive in odis when domestic is normally termed as easy level. He may be good in t20s. Same is the problem with nasir jamshed. He is good on flat wickets. Take him to Asia & he will not stop scoring 100s. Umar amin is another example of it. Only shoaib maqsood has some good record in domestic both SR & Average. or Haris sohail.

Problem is the criteria on which we select youngsters. Even in this test squad we selected shaan as an opener. who averages very low in domestic than many of others. So on what basis he was selected?

Posted by Mel-waas on (September 11, 2013, 16:27 GMT)

The reason Hafeez is in the side is because his bowling had made him into a permanent fixture. However his not a test class bowler, so he should be dropped from the test side. Taufeeq Umar, Nasir Jamshed or someone new like Khurram Manzoor should make the test opening pair. As for the selection of Shoiab Malik he is favored by Misbah as Limited overs player. His marginaly better performance against India has nothing to do with selection. Sohail Tanvir is a T20 specialist. Mohd Yousuf has himself to blame for being not availiable and not playing first class cricket. All yousuf had to do was to play for some county to get selected again. If Hafeez need to improve as a bat he needs to play for a County or South African First class.

Posted by asim229 on (September 11, 2013, 16:10 GMT)

I kind of disagree with most of the stuff in this article specially the comments about Nazir and Afridi.If someone plays aggressively then it doesn't mean that he lacks technique or shouldn't play cricket. If Imran Nazir was given confidence and guided properly then he could become the next Hayden or Gilchrist but for some reason people wanted him to play defensively so he lost his game.Also Afridi was always a bowling allrounder who was used initially as a pinch-hitter to take advantage of 15overs field restrictions and thats the only time he was successful with the bat. It all depends on whom the management gives confidence.Even Misbah was out of form for almost two years but management kept him in the team and today he is the highest run getter in 2013.With the current team management and defensive strategy no matter who you bring in the team the team will just be an average team at No4 or 5 and will not be able to become No1.

Posted by   on (September 11, 2013, 16:07 GMT)

Nasir Jamshed and Ahmed Shahzad are right now the best choice by far.Don't know why Khurram Manzoor is back

Posted by applethief on (September 11, 2013, 15:48 GMT)

Very confused article. Why is it talking about Salman Butt's continued selection? It completely overlooks the fact that Pakistan has been a team and country in crisis, from losing key players to losing all international cricket at home. Instead of statistical wunderkinds or nascent bundles of talent, we've needed to consoldiate and find some stability. We might not be setting the world on fire, but it's perfectly reasonable for us to be a side that can thrash England in the UAE, yet lose to South Africa away. Things aren't as dire as the writer paints it

Posted by   on (September 11, 2013, 13:07 GMT)

An article rich in English vocabulary and idioms, but lacking a lot to be desired. I agrees to few parts of the article and disagree to several of them. Mixing of talent in different formats is horrible mistake the author has made. Sohail Tanveer is an effective T20 bowler who I don't think is playing many ODIs and is not playing Test matches for sure. Imran Nazir, once a classy player has destroyed his batting by trying to become the next Afridi. Now he can hit around in domestic T20 leagues but can't handle the International flavor anymore which he was doing successfully in the start of his career. Muhammad Yousef, best ever batsman played for Pakistan and being sidelined? He has been sidelined because he is no more playing and performing in domestic competitions. And with all respect to him, he has played in an era where quality bowlers were becoming rarity with pitches being covered. He needs to check Miandad stats and those in an era of hostile fast bowlers and uncovered pitches

Posted by   on (September 11, 2013, 11:56 GMT)

A very random arrangement of information in this article. Imran Nazir last played an ODI back in 2009 and hasn't appeared since then in the ODI side. Sohail Tanvir played test cricket I don't know how many years ago, probably in 07/08 and has been limited to t20's only so I don't understand why the writer brought him and Nazir up. The new crop of players including Umar Akmal and Shahzad are a part of the side now and are given consistent chances and are doing well. Strange article as the case studies selected are pretty much outdated.

Posted by   on (September 11, 2013, 11:49 GMT)

We can never be a consistently winning side until we come out of the shell we are in. The biggest factor right now is lack of aggression which might be there due to lack of belief and also because the captain himself is one of the most negative sportsmen in the history of sports. Don't get me wrong, I do appreciate Misbah for his individual performances but his negative thinking has changed the total outlook of the team, if you do not believe me compare this team to the one that played 2011 World Cup, you will see the stark contrast in approach.

Pakistan's most successful captains Wasim, Imran, Salim and Moin were all aggressive in nature, their individual performances were also always up to the par but the bottom line was the confidence. I don't think we lack in talent, no side in the world can lose bowlers like Amir and Asif and replace them with the likes of Junaid and Irfan. All we need is to change the approach and maybe change the ODI captain. Kick Hafeez out of the test side.

Posted by   on (September 11, 2013, 11:08 GMT)

This article seems somewhat out of date. Would have made sense had it been written last year but Pakistans selection have been somewhat consistent this year, except for Hafeez which I still don't understand. Nasir Jamshed has been in the team more often then not, Imran Nazir doesn't play anymore and Sohail Tanvir is reserved to T20s, the young seamers have performed pretty well since the absence of Gul, young batsmen like Ahmed Shahzad, Umar Akmal, Nasir Jamshed and Asad Ali are being given chances. The only thing I'm missing is seeing Akmal in tests.

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