DESPITE the fact that DNA has rubbished the speculation that Malik would be replaced, the rumours about axing him from the captaincy are getting stronger by the hour. Nasim Ashraf said, the Board has appointed Malik for a two-year term and will continue backing him.
But, a senior PCB official confided to The News correspondent that all such reports are being carefully monitored by the Board. “We believe in continuity but not if it comes at the expense of the (national) team’s cause,” said the official. “The Board is considering other options and you may see a change in case a consensus develops over the captaincy issue,” he added.
Apart from the home series defeat against SA and the pathetic show in India, in which Pakistan lost both test and ODI series for the first time in 26 years. And now Pakistan’s Asia Cup defeat is yet another disappointment that has come under Malik’s tenure as captain.
The News added that, “more than the results, it is Malik’s failure to inspire his teammates that has put a question mark over his credentials as a leader. Senior players have been unhappy with his attitude while some of the younger ones have privately complained that Malik can be quite un-supportive at times.” Which means the younger players are opening up as they have seen him on and off-the field. On the field he is a weak, meek character and off the field he is an arrogant schemer.
The News also reported that, “the Board has also received complaints that Malik has a tendency of backing “players who are close to him” rather than picking teammates on the basis of their utility.” This information surfaced quite a few times when Malik wanted to play his friends and ouster Shahid Afridi. One of the senior officials of the PCB was quoted as saying: “Pakistan need a more imaginative and inspiring captain than Shoaib Malik, if they are to win major international titles.”
Therefore, Malik’s captaincy days are almost over and it is very likely that the PCB may not appoint him as a captain for the Champions Trophy. It is one of the reasons that the list of provisional probables for CT tournament was delayed and shall be announced tomorrow. It is very likely that once a consensus is reached Malik will be replaced by Misbah ul Haq. Even if that doesn’t happen tomorrow, it may happen before the CT begins.
The problem with the Pakistani selectors is, they judge a player’s capability from one or two performances and also on the basis of the majority opinion. The majority opinion, not only in Pakistan but, in India as well is; to worship the rising Sun. And Misbah’s solo win against India is enough justification for them to make him the captain.
Shahid Afridi is the ideal choice for the captaincy role, he is a captain’s material and an astute candidate for that role. The problem with him is his current batting form, which makes people skeptical in choosing him as a captain of the national side.
It is one of the worst times in Shahid Afridi’s career that when he could have easily taken over this role of captaincy his batting has let him down and thats even casting shadows of doubts over his inclusion in the team. Whereas, his bowling has been at his best and even today he is the leading wicket taker in the year 2008, yet that achievement is ignored or considered as insignificant or not enough justification in making him the captain of the Pakistan national side.
The other important news is the inclusion of the two druggies in the provisional squad of 30 players. The chief selector, Salahuddin Sallu said: “We will include both Shoaib and Asif in the preliminary squad for the Champions Trophy,” he told ‘The News’ on Wednesday. “Both of them are very important players and there is certainly space for them in the bowling line,” he pointed out.
It means like always you cannot trust what the PCB says, the ban for Shoaib Akhtar was initially for 5 years reduced to 3 and then 18 months and now he is in. The junior druggie was kept in the dungeon without any sentence so that if need be he could be brought into the team, and thats what they did. Apart from the charges laid on them, they are under inquiry and no one knows whether they will face penalties or not but, the truth is they are in the team despite the fact that both have suffered injuries and have fitness problems, yet they are “the chosen ones.” What a shame and what a disgrace for the nation.
Like India, Pakistan is also announcing a list of 30 provisional squad and then they will have to choose only half of them. The poor young ones who will be in the provisional squad will only be tasting “hope” and then they will go into oblivion. It is for you to say and decide:
Whether Malik be axed?
Whether Misbah or Afridi to lead?
Whether these two druggies be given another chance or not?