Friday, 1 October 2010

When the Men In Green Rose From Ashes like Re-Born Cornered Tigers...

This summer Pakistan won 6/15 of their games or 40% of encounters across all 3 formats which included 2 wins from each so 2 T20 wins, 2 Test wins; all of these which I covered in individual articles dedicated to them but also 2 ODI victories in September which I did not cover, but which took the ODI series to a decider to conclude an eventful summer of cricket on and off the field on the 22nd of September at the Rose Bowl which England won comprehensively to take the series honours. Which means they beat Pakistan in all 3 formats this summer. It's been a memorable summer of proceedings in many more ways than one for both sides! Pakistan showed their power and classy uniqueness or numerous occasion, but were unable to reflect it in the results as often as some would have liked. The discoveries and revelations of debutants provide promise and potential to succeed in the long term vision. So it wasn't a bad summer for Pakistan by any stretch of the imagination. Arguably, they could have done better ,but realistically speaking I am satisfied overall.

England on the other hand, have ideal preparation for the Ashes which I don't see them winning to be frankly honest. Winning down under will be an astonishing achievement undoubtedly and even with the best spinner in the world in their ranks, it looks beyond their capability. I predict 3-1 to Australia. Ironically, I would like to see England retain the urn down under because I live in England, support every team which takes on Australia and actually support England as a "second team" unlike other cricket followers from Asian descent and therefore would be supporting them to accomplish the mission, but we must get down to reality. Additionally, how can one actually be hopeful when the last visit resulted in a 5-0 humiliation and then there were high hopes as well? Just reinforcing a reality check here, would like this to all be proven wrong but tell me how this is going to happen then?

Looking ahead at what's to follow, Pakistan will be playing 20 international encounters this winter before the WC in mid February across all 3 formats which includes 5 T20s, 11 ODIs and 4 Tests combined against SA and NZ respectively. I expect us to win at least half of those encounters. All of this will be valuable preparation towards the big sub-continental spectacle in Spring 2011. With the way the tournament is structured anything can happen which will suit Pakistan's overall chances of success and even triumph!

I am just hoping against all hope that Aamir and Asif will be back for Pakistan. They are two gems and clear match winners and world class performers. Its highly unlikely they will return or if they have not been involved in match fixing or something of the sort but talent and ability wise Pakistan need them, no question about that, ideally speaking. But if can't happen that is totally understandable.

We want Younis Khan back as Test Captain and ODI player. The guy is a world class player and excellent leader who is being wasted by the clueless PCB management. I stand by Younis Khan. Come back soon.

In short, it shall be a very well anticipated winter which lies ahead where there is plenty to look forward to as the 2011 WC approaches. Pakistan will be looking to consolidate on their achievements and learning experiences gained this summer and should be looking to win a much larger proportion of fixtures in the exciting winter calendar. The PCB needs a new chairman who has the awareness, experience and vast understanding to guide Pakistan cricket forwards rather than someone who is destroying pride, humiliating reputation and behaving foolishly and shamelessly in Ijaz Butt. We can hope with a fresh and much needed change that Pakistan can taste the victorious flavour more often and will no longer be the laughing stock of world cricket which has to continuously bow its head in disgust. Surely there has to be light at the end of the tunnel where the cornered tigers can rise emphatically with strong leadership, sound management and a sophisticated systematic infra-structure which enables dreams and talents to be accomplished and strengthened?

17 comments:

Babar Naveed said...

Looking it from the Pakistani perspective it was a series not against a single opponent.. what ever littlr knowledge or experience i have about cricket i have always observed that whenever we tour England their media always looks to seek revenge of the 1992 w.cup final loss in Melbourne at the hands of Pakistan.. this time round it was no different the spot fixing fiasco then when Pakistan won at Lord's, allegations on Shahid Afridi it was all a part of pre planned controversy. HOwever barring the controversies the cricket played was upto some extent quite high class though results might not reflect that.

Babar Naveed said...

Pakistan's tie up against the Aussies was great ang we witnessed closely contested games. green shirts dominated the T20's and in the tests the drawn(1-1)series was a sign of a competent Pakistani team playing at a neutral venue.
But the real test was the seires against "the on-a-roll" English team
We showed glimpses pf talent,class, unity,fight however to be hones we were out playted in both the tests and T20's. In the ODIS the script was differen as we lost the first two ODIS by some mere margins however even after going 2-0 down the manner in whivh Shahd Afridi motivated his men and in such a way that we came back to square it 2-2 was exceptional. team's problem of being incosistent lead to their downfall in the final ODI at Rose a Bowl and we lost in match which was in our grasp for about 60% of the time

Maaaaz @ BBK (Maza786) said...

I admit the English press can be very biased and childish but the spot fixing allegations are one which we cannot necessarily defend with the strong evidence which has come with it.

But your right in the sense, that the England tour is always controversial and unpleasant for all the wrong reasons.

Babar Naveed said...

Still a lot of unforgettable occurences happened in these difficult thre months, however there are alot of positives to be taken. moving forward we can safely say that even without the suspended trio, our team has the ability to do well it would be more etter that those three join as soon as possible still in the presence of the availible players our team can do well. its just a little self determination and they motivation they need

Babar Naveed said...

@ Maaz: Inzamam was also accused of ball tampering at Oval in 2006 howevre he and entire team was proved innocent i admait that there must have been some link of the players with the bookie but its not been proved that the noballs were deliberately done,

Maaaaz @ BBK (Maza786) said...

liken Baabr sahab... its certainly suspicious with the reactions of the players following the incident in the 4th Test Match.. its highly unlikely that this is untrue otherwise that would have to be some serious media exaggeration...as unreliable as the sources may have been in the past.. this issue is of a completely different capacity

Anyway, assuming these 3 players are not cleared would you please share your team for the 3 different formats for the series against SA in UAE?

Babar Naveed said...

See the problem is that our players are not confident enough to face the foreign media. and u are always a little reluctant to say nay thing when u are on foreign land they were denying the charges hiwever our local media presented them as culprits.. the players themselves should have shown more confidence and the board should have also banked the "STRONGLY"

Babar Naveed said...

Test matches (15)
Mohammad Hafeez
Yasir Hameed
Younis Khan
Mohammad Yousuf
Umar Akmal
Kamran Akmal
Azhar Ali
Asim Kamal
Zulqarnain Haider
Saeed Ajmal
Umar Gul
Mohammad Talha
Danish Kaneria
Mohammad Sami
Anwar Ali

Babar Naveed said...

ODIS

Mohammad Hafeez
Khalid Latif
Younis Khan
Asad Shafiq
Umar Akmal
Shahid Afridi
Kamran Akmal
Fawad Alam
Mohammad Sami
Shoaib Akhtar
Mohammad Talha
Anwar Ali
Saeed Ajmal
Imran Nazeer
Umar Gul

Babar Naveed said...

T2O'S

Imran Nazeer
Shahzaib Hassan
Khalid Latif
Kamran Akmal
Shahid Afridi
Umar Akmal
Fawad Alam
Abdul Razzaq
Umar Gul
Saeed Ajmal
Anwar Ali
Mohammad Sami
Mohammad Talha

Maaaaz @ BBK (Maza786) said...

I have a problem with the selection of Kamran Akmal in the TEST team. Just WHY?

Shahid Khan Afridi has advised Kamran Akmal to take a break from TEST CRICKET until the 2011 WC. If KA sticks to playing T20 and ODI then I am confident this will benefit him and the team as well in terms of consistency, results and mindset. In order for Pakistan to succeed in the 5 day format this winter and in order ...for KA to succeed in the 2011 WC, this is the best way forward......

In other words if KA continues playing test cricket this would affect his performance and confidence in the shorter formats where he is a more of a utility player. This is another reason he should not play test cricket especially nowadays.

Also, sorry but Shahzaib Hassan Khan is a nothing player and street slogger who should stick to guli cricket. A proper aggressor is Imran Nazir and at least he looks more convincing and confident and uses his strengths to great effect such as fast hands,amazing bat speed, cutting, pulling & clearing the in field in the PP overs.

Maaaaz @ BBK (Maza786) said...

If Kamran does this I will become a much more appreciative supporter of him. This is a test to see if Kamran cares for country over himself personally? Is he a true patriot? If he listens to Afridi's advice then I guess he almost certainly is!

I rate him highly as an ODI and T20 player and we cannot have him in the TEST ARENA as a WK. God Forbid!

Also, Malik needs to be in the ODI and T20 team one shall feel despite everything with his reputation and character, he is a useful player in the LO formats and stats would back that up. He can work the ball around so well in the middle overs and accelerate the run rate when he gets going. Also, he is a good player in Asia so could be key for WC.

Maaaaz @ BBK (Maza786) said...

Regarding Kami

I mean we have to look at our upcoming matches...80% of the matches (16 out of 20) are ODIs & T20s (11 ODIs & 5 T20s)...and with WC near by, Kamran is more needed for Limited Overs...the 4 test matches could give Zulqi a great opportunity t...o cement his place in the test squad as a good back up to Kami...that's how we are looking at it...and besides, In Test Cricket, wicket keeping priority comes first as that is an absolute crucial position for bowling sides...A Wicket Keeper plays a huge role in preventing opposition from scoring big runs by taking catches, saving runs, and stumping chances...

Maaaaz @ BBK (Maza786) said...

My team against SA in UAE

T20s

Imran Nazir
Abdul Razzaq
Kamran Akmal
Shoaib Malik
Umar Akmal
Shahid Afridi
Hammad Azam
Yasir Arafat
Umar Gul
Shoaib Akhtar
Ajmal

ODIs

Kamran Akmal
Hafeez
Younis Khan
Malik
Umar Akmal
Afridi
Razzaq
Hammad Azam/Sohail Tanvir/Talha
Umar Gul
Shoaib Akhtar
Ajmal

Tests

Azhar Ali
Hafeez
Younis Khan
Mohammad Yousuf
Umar Akmal
Hammad Azam/Asad Shafiq
Zulqarnain Haider
Sohail Khan/Asad Ali
Umar Gul
Ajmal
Mohammad Talha
12th Man: Yasir Shah or Raza Hasan

Babar Naveed said...

after a long time the team looked united i.e in the ODI series against England getting Malik back in the team would do horrors as he starts grouping in the team..

Babar Naveed said...

i think in tests we need a solid middle order because offlate out midle order has crumbled under pressure and as a result we have either lost games which we were certain of winning or we have lost a chance of amassing a significant lead. i would play Asim Kamal in my test team..

Babar Naveed said...

get rid or Shoaib Malik forever and give more chances Asad Shafiq, Khalid Latif, Azeem Ghumman, Shahid Yousuf. all are very talented and performers at domestic.

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