The Timeline of Decline:
This is the story of Pakistan cricket from the 2007 World Cup up until today.
2007 World Cup.
• The 2007 World Cup in the Caribbean was where it all started in my opinion.
Ireland produced one of the greatest victories in cricket's rich history by beating Pakistan on St Patrick's Day amid unbelievable tension in Jamaica. Reported BBC
• The very same night saw the tragic death of one of the greatest faces in the game of cricket Bob Woolmer, his death is still a mystery that marked the beginning of a decline for Pakistan Cricket.
• Another tragedy that we witnessed in the 2007 world cup was the sad retirement of then Captain Inzamam Ul Haq, the day will be marked as a great loss for Pakistan Cricket.
Geoff Lawson & Shoaib Malik Era
• An array of hope was sensed when Shoaib Malik successfully led the team to the final of the inaugural T20 World Cup in 2007.
• The very same year Pakistan lost some of its great talent to the Unsanctioned Indian Cricket League, these included some of the top performers like Mohammad Yousuf & Abdul Razzaq with the former never seem to recover from the setback he faced during the controversy.
• Shoaib Malik was shown the gate after a period of bad form & poor captaincy that led to Younis Khan being appointed as the new captain, Younis worked with Geoff Lawson for a short spam until October 2008 after which Lawson was released by PCB.
• Intikhab Alam the veteran & perhaps the most successful Pakistani coach was appointed for the job.
Mumbai attacks & attack on Sri Lankan players
• November 2008 saw the tragic Mumbai attacks, who would have thought it would influence cricket in Pakistan so badly after which teams from all over the world refused to travel to Pakistan due to security concerns.
• But the always supportive & brave Sri Lankan cricket team toured Pakistan for a test series dismissing all security threats. March 3, 2009 saw one of the most terrible days in the history of cricket when the Sri Lankan cricket team was cruelly attacked by terrorists fortunately the players escaped with minor injuries but that led to the cancellation of the tour and Pakistan loosing the right to host the 2011 ODI World Cup, many lives were also lost in the attack.
Short lived celebration World T20 title
• Pakistani cricketers were ignored for the second season of the IPL2 perhaps a blessing in disguise.
• Then came June 2009 and against all odds the men in green won for there wounded nation the 2009 ICC World T20 title.
• Immediately after the triumph in T20 World Cup saw the return of Mohammad Yousuf and one thought that things are getting better and better, but when Pakistan toured Sri Lanka they were comprehensively beaten in the series, a series where on many occasions Pakistan lost after being in a winning position
Pakistan white washed
• Due to problems with the PCB Younis Khan opted out of the test tours of New Zealand & Australia. Mohammad Yousuf was appointed as the new captain.
• Pakistan was able to draw the test series in New Zealand but was thrashed by Australia in the tour down under, a white wash of 9-0 was least expected.
Top players banned & fined
• An Inquiry committee was set up to find out the reasons of defeat and resurrect Pakistan cricket, on 09th March 2010 the inquiry committee concluded & decision was made to give life bans to Mohammad Yousuf & Younis Khan, Shoaib Malik & Rana Naved were banned for one year, Akmal brothers & Afridi were slapped with fines. The decisions were met with mixed reactions from the public & former players. In my personal opinion the players did not deserve these severe punishments.
• 11th March 2010 rumors emerge that Chief Justice of Pakistan is to overturn the Ban on Pakistani cricketers & Ijaz Butt makes a U-Turn saying he never banned the players for life.
Whatever it may be one can only hope for the best, during this period of 3 years there has been moments of respite. But then again mostly it is followed by controversies & disappointment for the fans & the nation that loves the game.
7 years ago