A DECADE OF DADA-GIRI

Ganguly The Champion

Ganguly The Champion

It would be impossible to list Sourav Ganguly’s achievements and his contributions towards the Indian Cricket Team during his 18 years of international career. But, one must admit this man’s courage, creativity and his craftiness in playing a pivotal role in reviving the lost confidence among the players with his astute leadership qualities. In my opinion his overall or all-round capabilities as a batsman, a bowler and a very good captain makes him stand head and shoulders above the rest of the great players that India has produced.

Tendulkar and Ganguly

Tendulkar and Ganguly

Where Tendulkar excelled as a batsman, Ganguly was not behind him, when Tendulkar struck the opposition with his bowling, Ganguly was not behind him. When Tendulkar failed as a captain, Ganguly stood ahead of him and showed his class, that is why I rate him better than Tendulkar in his over all contributions to the game of cricket in India.

As a batsman he was a tactician and as a bowler he was crafty and as a captain he was shrewed. Whether people remember it or not, whether they acknowledge this fact or not, when the Indian team was jinxed by Javed Miandad’s sixer in Sharjah they kept on losing against Pakistan for a long, long time. But, it was Sourav Ganguly who came to Pakistan in 2004 and won the ODI and the test series against Pakistan.

In Rome do as the "Romanians" do

In Rome do as the Romans do

Ganguly’s outbursts on and off the field reflects his passion and his emotions for the game of cricket. His batting achievements are not near to Tendulkar’s but they are not mean by any standards. His 11000 plus runs in ODI are third highest. On his test debut he scored a hundred at Lords and not just that he was also known as the spice boy or the hot guy who took off his shirt as a retort to Andrew Flintoff’s earlier stint. Although some of the Indian critics did not appreciate it, but I see there is nothing wrong in giving him a tit for tat.

A partnership breaker

A partnership breaker

Like I said, it would be hard, rather impossible to pen down every single detail about Ganguly’s contribution that is why we have dedicated this special thread DADA KAY NAAM – EK PAIGHAM. Now, its for you to write your feelings and observations about him and it is up to you to rate him above or equal to Tendulkar. Be fair and be generous to give him the due that he deserves.

Cool behind those glasses?

Cool behind those glasses?

Despite being victimized by Greg Chappell and the trivial politics that he played to ouster Ganguly, he came back with an even strong grit and determination to prove his worth as a player. In my opinion he is the most successful and accomplished player India has ever produced.

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  1. #1 by khansahab on November 10, 2008 - 8:45 PM

    I agree with Javed A Khan about it being impossible to list Ganguly’s achievements. What made Ganguly special was his captaincy record which somehow seems to put him ahead of all of India’s great players.

    A great batsman (some called him “God on the off side” because of his expertise playing cover drives and other off drives), an able and underrated bowler (he once got Man of the Series because of his bowling performance in a tournament) and simply the best captain India produced.

    Ganguly also did not receive the respect and admiration he deserved, much like Kumble. The reason for this was that Ganguly often spoke out against BCCI’s dictatorial demeanour and uncooperative attitude with Indian cricketers. Also, Tendulkar’s and Dravid’s batting heroics made Ganguly appear a less valuable player to a nation that has traditionally worshipped its batting heroes.

    The BCCI did not like Ganguly, yet he was an effective captain and he was aggressive. He believed in getting the best out of his players and his aggressive psyche can be observed from the fact that at times he reached his 50s and 100s with a four or a six. He was a unique player. Javed A Khan is spot on in that Ganguly provided a sense of pride and direction to his team mates and in fact the current sustained good form experienced by India is due to Ganguly’s greatness as a captain and his nurturing of players like Sehwag and Dhoni. Under Ganguly the Indian team somehow started believing it could play with aggression and it could win consistently against good sides.

    Ganguly was called “the Prince of Calcutta”, and his deeds were indeed princely. He was like a king who connected with his people and won the admiration of even his toughest critics such as Greg Chappell. He was not as skilled a batsman as Tendulkar or Dravid, but when he got going, what one saw was more than just skills or natural talent- it was the determination to score many, many runs and win matches for his team. He was insulted by the BCCI after he was made captain and he got dropped for a long while. He came back with such a bang, that you felt he was an altogether new and improved batsman. That was the real face of Ganguly’s class.

    Ganguly’s last Test innings, a golden duck, somehow made me appreciate him more, because I felt for him. In doing so I realised his greatness as a batsman and captain, and as an overall icon for India. He made a hard-fought 85 in the first innings and this Test somehow condenses Ganguly’s career, for me. He made a valuable contribution to India’s success, although Tendulkar and Sehwag scored more than him and hence will take greater credit for India’s batting, he suffered a rare tragedy because of his duck, but it would be difficult to imagine this victory without his presence and his contribution. As goes with all heroes, Ganguly did a lot without getting the due for his work. But for him, it was not MOM awards or personal milestones that mattered. What mattered for him was playing for India with a lot of fire, passion and commitment, and making a positive contribution to India’s success. And that is indeed where he excelled, and that is indeed what he will be remembered for.

  2. #2 by Sana on November 10, 2008 - 8:57 PM

    Man, Britneys new song is boo boo…

  3. #3 by khansahab on November 10, 2008 - 9:06 PM

    India is new Australia and the world’s best team : Abdul Qadir

    Karachi (IANS): Pakistan’s legendary spinner Abdul Qadir said on Monday that India is the ‘new Australia’ of the cricket world after it blanked Ricky Ponting’s men 2-0 in a four-match Test series in Nagpur.

    Qadir, who is widely tipped to take over as Pakistan’s new chief selector, said winning two Tests in a four-match series against Australia was a huge feat. “I believe that India is now the new Australia of Test cricket.

    By beating the Aussies in the four-Test series, India has proved that it is now the world’s best team,” said Qadir.

    India defeated Australia by 172 runs on the final day of the fourth and final Test in Nagpur to complete a stunning 2-0 series win. But two of its greatest Test cricketers – Anil Kumble and Sourav Ganguly – announced their retirements.

    Qadir said India will miss their presence in the near future. “I believe that both Kumble and Ganguly were two great assets of the Indian team and they will be missed in the coming months,” he said.
    Qadir said Pakistan, which is scheduled to host India in Jan-Feb for three Tests, five one-day Internationals and a Twenty20 international, will have to give its best to be able to counter the rampaging Indians.

    “India is in form and Pakistan will have to make a Herculean effort to beat them,” he concluded.

  4. #4 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 10, 2008 - 9:21 PM

    Sana

    yae, Bhutney Spears kahan say aa gayee cricket ground per?

    khansahab

    you have mentioned some very valuable points that highlights Ganguly’s career. I want to see the perspective of some of the Indian bloggers here like, Varun, Pawan, Amit, Sakhti etc., and see what they have to say.

    You have rightly mentioned that, “Tendulkar and Dravid’s batting heroics made Ganguly appear a less valuable player to a nation that has traditionally worshiped its batting heroes.”

    How true, the crowd only loves the batsmen who score hundreds, or who hit big sixes and fours or the fast bowlers thats all.

    I hope Abdul Qadir “IF” he is selected as The Chief Selector, uses his head in team selection rather than getting influenced by Butts and Asses (donkeys). Because, imo Aamir Sohail would be a total disaster as he is a very biased person and just because he is a commentator now his uncouth rudeness and arrogance cannot disappear in thin air. Even if you paint stripes on a donkey you can’t make him a Zebra, “BAKAOZ” he will not give up his “DhainChoon – DhainChoon.”

  5. #5 by 420 on November 10, 2008 - 10:10 PM

    hats off to ganguly for infusing agression into the dressing room.. in the ODIs, ganguly is a t(H)reat to watch especially after reaching his century. his innocent eye blinking is deceptive , as bowlers across the world have realised. he has his share of gloomy days, but above all fought fire with fire

    we miss u sourav

    ps: his taunton’s innings was the day we got our first colour tv, and cant forget that day for ever

  6. #6 by khansahab on November 11, 2008 - 10:22 AM

    Wasim Bari, Aamir Sohail bag crucial PCB slots

    Monday, 10 Nov, 2008

    LAHORE: The Pakistan Cricket Board on Monday appointed former cricket captains, Wasim Bari and Aamir Sohail, as Director Administration and Human Resource and Director Academies respectively while Salim Altaf was elevated to the post of Chief Operating Officer.
    The appointments were made and approved by a Governing Board meeting which met here under the chairmanship of PCB Chairman,Ijaz Butt. Out of 15 board members, nine attended the meeting.
    Salim Altaf, who was previously working as Director General of the Board, has been elevated as COO while Special Assistant to Chairman,Asif Suhail, has been given the responsibility to head the media department.
    “The Governing Board took a number of important decisions besides approving various appointments,”said Salim Altaf at a news conference after the meeting.
    He said the Governing Board was of the view that the current annual budget of PCB, nearly Rs2 billion, must be curtailed since Pakistan cricket had suffered due to cancellation of tours of foreign teams and the Champions Trophy.
    The annual budget is now being spent on cricket administration, visits of teams and national cricket academy and allied cricket matters.
    “All the members of the governing board will be putting up their suggestions and finding ways to curtail the budget and after that the new budget will be presented and implemented from January first next year,” he added.
    He said the present budget was excessive and it could be reduced by measures, including reviewing various appointments of regional development managers and officers throughout the country by the previous regime of the PCB.
    Sources in the governing board confirmed that the posts of managers and officers would be abolished in the new budget as Rs5 million were being spent every month on their salaries.
    When asked about the financial irregularities committed by the previous set up of the board,Salim Atlaf did not give a clear answer and said “ it is time to look ahead, setting aside what happened in the past as we will be having a lot of cricket activities at home by hosting India early next year and there is a planned tour of Australia besides hosting Champions trophy in September.
    Answering a question, he said, the governing board did not take a decision to abolish the posts of directors to cut down heavy expenses as a decision in this regard would be taken in the next budget.
    To a question he expressed the optimism that India would undertake its tour of Pakistan as per schedule in January-February next year and said in case the Indian side might review its decision to visit Pakistan then there were other options to have this series at a natural venue, including England which had offered to stage the series.
    “But we want to have this series here and we will convince India to visit Pakistan because it will help in bringing back international cricket to Pakistan and giving some financial stability to PCB,” he asserted.
    “But at the same time we must look into other options to keep the door open to play international cricket and to keep our team involved in all formats of the game”.

  7. #7 by khansahab on November 11, 2008 - 10:42 AM

    Amit P, Varun, Pawan, Sakthi….and other Indian brothers…

    Please read my comment no 574 on the POLITICS page and give your opinions. I have pasted an article written by a Pakistani scientist on his visit to India. He is comparing the two countries and discussing India’s growth.

    I liked what he wrote- he has spoken the truth without any bias.

  8. #8 by khansahab on November 11, 2008 - 12:31 PM

    India may call off Pak tour fearing security

    New Delhi: India’s cricket tour to Pakistan in January is likely to be called off. The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) sources have told CNN-IBN that the security situation in Pakistan is dangerous.
    In fact the Indian mission in Islamabad has given a report on the security situation in Pakistan and the report clearly outlines the dangerous situation in the country.
    This report is not specific to the Indian cricket tour and thus a final decision has not been taken as yet.
    The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) website, too, is yet to confirm the six-week long itinerary starting January 2009.
    BCCI sources told CNN-IBN that they will discuss the Pakistan tour in detail with MEA in December.
    Meanwhile, BCCI Vice-President Rajiv Shukla said, “We will wait for clearance from MEA. From our side the tour is still on.”
    India are to play three Tests, five One-Day Internationals and a Twenty20 game. The Test matches are at Karachi, Rawalpindi and Lahore while the ODIs are to be held at Faisalabad, Lahore, Rawalpindi, Multan and Karachi.
    The lone Twenty20 will be played in Karachi.
    Earlier the five-match hockey Test series between the junior teams of India and Pakistan was called-off on Monday as the MEA refused to give clearance to the team, citing security fears.
    The series was slated to start from Tuesday at the Hockey Club of Pakistan in Karachi.
    President of the Pakistan Hockey Federation Qasim Zia told reporters in Karachi that the series was called off as the Indian government was not satisfied with the security plans for their team.
    “When Indian team didn’t arrive on schedule, we got in touch with the Indian hockey officials and they said they are still waiting for clearance from their foreign ministry,” Zia said.
    “But at 1600 hrs, we were informed by the Indian hockey officials that they are not coming. The Indian government didn’t clear the tour because they were not happy with the security plan we assured them,” he added.
    The volatile situation in Pakistan has seen quite a few cricket tours being cancelled including the high profile champions trophy after countries like England, South Africa, New Zealand and Australia decided against touring Pakistan.

  9. #9 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 11, 2008 - 3:09 PM

    khansahab # 11

    India may call off Pakistan’s tour in January 2009!

    January 2009 is still too far away and you cannot predict about the political situation or the security aspects in Pakistan. But, there is a general view and that is:

    1. This is what happens when you play a lot of cricket, you loose the appetite for it. India has been playing ceaselessly.

    2. This is what happens when you beat a very good side like Australia and win a test series 2-0, then you don’t feel motivated to play against a side like Pakistan which at the moment is competing against Zimbabwe and Bangladesh.

    3. This is what happens when your house (Pakistan) is not in order and you expect the guests to be eager to come and play? Its simply not possible.

    Pakistan’s current environment both, politically and economically are not stable and conducive and could be called as satisfactorily safe. Apart from the ongoing political disturbances, the masses are up against the regime for not controlling the food, oil and utility prices and creating scarcity of food and basic necessities of life, on top of that there is load shedding and various other issues. The main one is leadership crisis, both in politics and in cricket.

    The PCB and the new administrators are a bunch of idiots and they are not doing their job properly. Their best batsman from the test arena has left the country to play for the ICL in India and they are not interested in bringing him back or, in compensating him in some way to keep him play for the country. On the contrary the idiot coach is saying he (MoYo) will not be missed. So, with all these things combined together, if India is not motivated to play against a team which is easy to beat, you can’t blame them.

    It is not that simple, Pakistan when they play against India they aren’t that bad either, even this current team can put up a good fight. But India wants to enjoy the euphoria and continue to indulge in the joys of victory against Australia.

    If they come to Pakistan and loose the series, not only the euphoria is short lived, but they will be heavily criticized by their own people and the media that, it was a fluke victory against the slightly weaker Australian side. Now, this may spark a debate here. But, the fact is when India lost to Sri Lanka, in Sri Lanka they were heavily criticized and humiliated by the people and the press.

  10. #10 by khansahab on November 11, 2008 - 3:25 PM

    Under Musharraf at least some teams were willing to play in Pakistan. Under the new government the situation has worsened so much that no one wants to play.

  11. #11 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 11, 2008 - 3:56 PM

    HOW TRUE !

    BRING BACK MUSHARRAF.

  12. #12 by 420 on November 11, 2008 - 4:16 PM

    Javed
    My dad wanted us to “concentrate” on studies. we got the colour tv and cable connection only after my engineering entrance exam 😛
    I still remember flocking the house of a neighbour for tv when i was a 5 year old

  13. #13 by khansahab on November 11, 2008 - 4:21 PM

    JIYE MUSHARRAF! MUSHARRAF AUR IMRAN KHAN BHAI BHAI!

  14. #14 by khansahab on November 11, 2008 - 4:24 PM

    How long will the Choudharys and Wadereys keep out Imran and Musharraf?

    How long will the Pakistani public be ignorant?

    There will be a time……the night is darkest before the dawn…….AND THE DAWN WILL COME.

    Musharraf for President! Imran for Prime Minister!

  15. #15 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 11, 2008 - 4:47 PM

    420

    My intention was not to pin you down, it was a comment in jest that you are making him sound old and ancient. As it is, a lot of people think DADA means grandfather whereas in Bengal the older brother is called DADA. Or, the other DADA is a gangster and by writing the word “DADAGIRI” here we are not saying he was a gangster but, his rule as a big brother, which in my opinion Tendulkar should have taken. But, in most families it happens that the second brother (in French they call the second one as, Cadet) takes over from the older one and leads the family. Ganguly’s role is admirable.

    Me too, I remember here in Canada, even in 1998 we had problems in getting live TV, forget live TV coverage, there was no media coverage in newspapers (still no room for cricket) but there was no way we could get any running commentary on radio. It was extremely hard to find radios with shortwave 1, 2, 3 because here the whole world listen to FM and AM radio thats all. Only a few cinema houses were showing the matches live by charging $10 per match and were making money (house full).

    Later, one of my friends some how got this “2” number wali satellite dish connection through the States and got live cricket channel here and he invited us all in the basement of his house and it was a treat for us. I remember it was a India / Pakistan match in Sharjah.

    Then during the 1999 and 2003 WC’s we used to go to a cinema house where they used to show Indian movies, they showed these matches live at $10. And, on India / Pakistan day it was $15 and they had to show that match in two different cinema houses to avoid any “Phadda”.

  16. #16 by Abdul on November 11, 2008 - 5:53 PM

    It’s certainly wothwhile dedicating a thread to Dada who made a valid contibution to Indian cricket in the last decade. However, I would disagree with the point that he’s the most accomplished invidual India has produced and is better than the masterful Sachin Tnedulkur. However, he did have some masterful qualaties like being one of the greatest cover drivers in the modern game, one of the biggest wickets for an opposition to take and indeed had some superb leadership qualities. An as proved by Bradman and Inzamam there is no shame in getting a low score in your farewell innings.

  17. #17 by 420 on November 11, 2008 - 5:56 PM

    Javed
    I neva took your comments in the wrong sense, but i was trying to convey why it took me for eva to watch a colour tv 😛

    and indians ,pakistanis together watching a ind-pak cricket match would be a real contest 😛

  18. #18 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 11, 2008 - 6:11 PM

    420

    I understand your point, even before you explained it in detail, I knew it. But, it was just for the heck of it, I wrote what I wrote. And trust me, watching India / Pakistan play on neutral grounds like Sharjah is different. But, watching that match in that movie house is very different and you won’t like to be there.

    During the 1999 WC match (Although Pakistan always lost to India in WC’s) an Indian supporter jumped from his seat after a Pakistani player was out, can’t remember who, but he jumped with joy and looked back at the Pakistani supporters who were sitting in the back row. They just pulled him down and slapped him, thaa, thaa, thaa, thaa, the guy went out and called the police, luckily by then the match was over.

    Then, during the 2003 WC, they segregated the Indians and Pakistanis, its a Mall where they have a few cinema houses (Megaplex) so instead of one they were showing the same match in two places. With signs clearly displaying —-> INDIANS and then ——> PAKISTANIS this way! 🙂

  19. #19 by Varun Suri on November 11, 2008 - 6:24 PM

    I will try to be as fair and un-biased as I can, since I have admitted before that I have always admired and enjoyed watching this man’s talent, courage, spirit and passion for the game and if given a choice to emulate anyone of the Cricketers I would always go for him before Tendulkar, Dravid or even Laxman. Much has been said and written about him in the past few days on the Web and other forms of Media.

    To simplify (or complicate) the matters, I would like to abstain from the usual comparison most of the people are getting into thesedays. For example There is no need for a Ganguly Fan to provide arguments to prove or support that whether he is superior to Tendulkar or not. This is a moment to cherish all those memories he gave us and many times Tendulkar was also a part of it!! Personally, I believe that since the end of 90’s suddenly we had players like Dravid, Ganguly, Laxman, Kumble, Harbhajan who had started performing well and winning matches for India we generally became a better team in 2000’s as compared to the last decade, but this in no way should undermine what Tendulkar did from his debut in 1989 until 1996 when he was sole torch bearer of the Indian Batting. Tendulkar and Ganguly forged one of the best Opening pairs in One-Day never mind the Tests. Ganguly was an aggressive Captain with complete support of his team players and vice-versa. It was only when Chappell introduced his Politics there were some tensions and he was stripped of his Captaincy and subsequently his place in the side. Of Course there will be critics who would moan about Tendulkar’s Captaincy as compared to Ganguly or his pursuit of Personal Records “BEE-KAZ” as one Nietzsche has rightly said…

    “At times one remains faithful to a cause only because its opponents do not cease to be insipid. What can everyone do? Praise and blame. This is human virtue, this is human madness”

    The contribution of Tendulkar to Indian Cricket should be considered at the same Level as Ganguly, Dravid, Laxman or even Kumble. They all shared the same dressing room mostly took part in the same Victories and Losses and throughout their Careers maintained a certain sense of dignity about them for which there will be no dearth of Respect or Blessings until the end.

    Of Course I am not for any undeserved praise for any Player as I quote: –

    “Undeserved praise causes more pangs of conscience later than undeserved blame, but probably only for this reason, that our power of judgment is more completely exposed by being over praised than by being unjustly underestimated.”

    What makes Tendulkar special is the longetivity of his Career, which is still not finished after 20 Years of grueling 21st Century Cricket. Also, people who complain he is not a match winner conveniently forget that there were times in the 90’s when India’s win solely depended on how well he could play. Well, in order to appear un-biased and fair I think I sided a bit too much with Tendulkar

    I would like to end with yet another Quote of a relatively Un-known German Philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche: –


    You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.

    More latersss

  20. #20 by khansahab on November 11, 2008 - 7:58 PM

    I have been campaigning long and hard to get Malik removed as captain and now the calls are increasing from all sides to replace him. Inzamam, Yousuf, Shoaib Akhtar- we never thought these people could have anything against Malik but they have all voiced their concerns. Afridi was obviously against Malik from the first day because he wanted to be the captain himself.

    It is stupid to review Malik’s captaincy in December because Pakistan is likely to win this ODI series, and would that make Malik a good captain? It will not. West Indies are like a minnow team and half the players in their squad are unknowns. Ijaz Butt seemed to hint that Malik’s future will depend on how the team performs in this series and we all know Pakistan has more than a 75% chance of winning this series.

    PCB should have appointed a new captain before this series so that he could have some experience and could take confidence from beating a minnow side. Ijaz Ahmed said recently that Malik should remain the captain because a brand new captain in January would find it hard to adjust and adapt himself for the India series, but if that is really the case why not change the captain now?

    We are witnessing such stupidity from the Ijaz Butt administration! Pakistan will lose against India anyway but if Pakistan had a different captain, at least we could have expected better team performances.

    Having said all this, India may not tour Pakistan anyway 🙂

  21. #21 by khansahab on November 11, 2008 - 8:02 PM

    Pakistan’s Akhtar doubtful for first ODI against Windies

    KARACHI, Nov 11 (Reuters) – Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar is doubtful for the first one-day international against West Indies in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday after straining his calf muscle.
    Team officials told Reuters from Abu Dhabi that Akhtar had picked up the injury during nets and would have a fitness test before the match.
    “He is a doubtful starter as he is not in good shape,” one official said on Tuesday.
    The other two matches in the series are on Nov. 14 and 16.
    Akhtar returned to the team last month for a four-nation Twenty20 tournament in Toronto after spending nearly 10 months on the sidelines because of disciplinary issues.

  22. #22 by khansahab on November 11, 2008 - 8:45 PM

    LOL @ Mohammad Asaf

    Recently Mushtaq Ahmed, who is a character himself (he told Ramiz Raja in an interview, “I am 100% agree with you, Ramiz!”) told a joke:

    When Asaf received the reports of his drugs test showing as “positive”, he didn’t know what “positive” means in this context. He was in a dressing room at that time and with his result in his hand, he waved at everyone cheerily and said (I am writing his comment in English, as I don’t know how to translate it into Punjabi): “Thank you to all of you for your prayers, my results have come as positive!!” Mushy indicated that Asif also gave a thumbs-up sign to everyone. Poor Asaf didn’t know that results being “positive” means he is guilty of drug abuse!!

  23. #23 by khansahab on November 11, 2008 - 9:03 PM

    ‘Malik is not an automatic choice in the playing XI’ – Imran Khan

    Imran Khan former Pakistan captain criticise Pakistan Cricket Board, and said “PCB were responsible for the choices they made”. Khan cited out Shoaib Malik and his captaincy and believes “Malik is not an automatic choice in the playing XI.”

    “When I was the captain, I never expected to be announced the captain for more than one series,” he said. “I cannot understand how Malik was announced the captain for two years. It reflects the level of thinking in the system.”

    “The president of the country, who knows nothing about cricket, picks the chairman of the board [Ejaz Butt], who might also know zero about the game,” he maintained. Imran, who led Pakistan to the 1992 World Cup triumph, further said, Malik is not an automatic choice in the playing XI and doesn’t deserve to be the skipper. “A captain has to command respect,” Imran said. “You cannot do that if your own place in the team is in doubt.”

    Pakistan under Malik captaincy have suffered a Test series defeat at home to South Africa and another one in India, while failing to qualify for the Asia Cup final – held in Pakistan earlier this year. Malik, though, will hope to silence his critics during the course of the three one-day internationals against the West Indies, starting today[Wednesday] in Abu Dhabi.

    Earlier this month, Inzamam-ul-Haq has accused him[Shoaib Malik] of not treating the senior players with respect while Mohammed Yousuf made similar charges after quitting the team for the rebel Indian Cricket League.

  24. #24 by khansahab on November 11, 2008 - 9:05 PM

    JIYE IMRAN KHAN!

  25. #25 by khansahab on November 11, 2008 - 9:17 PM

    Please see latest picture of Imran Khan & Shahrukh Khan on Hot Gals……..

  26. #26 by khansahab on November 12, 2008 - 2:48 PM

    The same old story at the PCB

    Wednesday, 12 Nov, 2008

    THE decision by Pakistan Cricket Board to focus its energies on ways to ‘move forward’ instead of ‘probing the misdeeds of the previous management’ can, indeed, be called a pragmatic approach.

    With on-field activity getting dried up, players opting out of national duty, and the domestic structure struggling to throw up much of a talent, it is surely time to get down to the business of management rather than roaming the wasteland of official inquiries. It also makes sense on another crucial front.

    If the sitting management finds anything wrong with its predecessor, it will actually be calling into question its own worth and acumen for the job because the leading lights of today have been part of the system for long. The re-designated chief operating officer, for instance, is serving his third consecutive boss at the PCB.

    In turn, the chairman, as a member of the 14-strong board of governors, had himself been part of the cricketing setup for the last year or so. During the period, he was party to all the decisions that were made by the previous management. And he is not on record as having raised a voice of dissent either.

    By criticizing the deeds of their predecessors, they had till now been questioning their own decisions. Sanity finally seems to have prevailed and the PCB has decided to ‘move on’. This is a sad story, but even more regrettable is the fact that this was true of even the previous management where Nasim Ashraf was an integral part of Shaharyar Khan’s team, but once he replaced his boss at the top, he found something wrong with everything and almost everyone.

    Clearly, like the nation at large, the PCB is in no mood to take a lesson from history. The new appointments made in the last month or so only confirm the notion. They have all been around for a long time and have returned to the scene only wearing different hats.

  27. #27 by Varun Suri on November 12, 2008 - 3:09 PM

    Windies put up a decent show and posted 294 which is a lot less than what they’d be hoping at one stage when Gayle got bonkers and slammed Abdul Rauf for 4 4’s in one over and then hit 2 Sixes of Umar Gul’s first over, Akmal again dropped a lolly which was one of the 4 catches dropped by Pakistan. Although it is a good batting track and Windies have no Walsh or Ambrose but still it could lead to a close finish if Pakistani lose wickets in a careless manner in the beginning!!! Malik has another chance to justify his captiancy, and as usual Afridi fans would be hoping for yet another ‘blitzkrieg’ and Salman Butt and Khurram Manzoor need to give a solid start to the innings.
    Let’s read what happens….

  28. #28 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 12, 2008 - 4:08 PM

    Salman Butt is playing a test match. 11 runs in 36 balls, WTF? what is he trying to prove? There will be more pressure on the players coming later. You need a Sehwag and Gambhir start.

    In today’s Pak team, survival is based on individual performance and not team interest, if you score a 50 in 100 balls thats good and if you score a 100 in 150 balls thats excellent the result, team lost, never mind your place is guaranteed. Pak RR is 4.01 per over, RRR is 6.40 and is climbing up.

    Ps.

    Good riddance, finally we see Salman’s Butt towards the pavilion he is a real pain in the Butt when he plays like this.

  29. #29 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 12, 2008 - 4:47 PM

    ATHAR ALI KHAN’s bloopers:

    Bangladeshi commentator Athar Ali Khan not only makes silly mistakes and his grammatical blasphemies, but he amuses us like Waqar and the unique thing about him is his lisping. In the previous ODI Bangladesh vs. SA, in which Amla scored 140, he said:

    1. A big MIKSHUP for mix up. (in case of a possible run out)

    2. And finally he MAKESHIT for makes it, i.e., when the fielder took a catch, (earlier he dropped a sitter)

    3. Among the noisest screamers in the game of cricket, I rate Bangladesh’s Mushrif ur Rehman the wicketkeeper as the worst and most annoying after him is Kamran Akmal. Such painful noises they make that pierce through your ears and damage your eardrums.

    ***

    With Younus Khan’s arrival at the crease at least there are singles flowing easily and he is making Khurram Manzoor run. Otherwise, because of Butt’s stagnation Khurram was also stuck on one end.

  30. #30 by khansahab on November 12, 2008 - 5:31 PM

    Once again Misbah got out playing a silly shot proving he is not a finisher.

    What a knock by Younis though, completely dominating.

  31. #31 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 12, 2008 - 5:32 PM

    BAKAOZ of Salman Butt’s slow start, now the Pakistan team has to play a T20 style innings from here after 142 runs in 19 overs. Making it difficult for the rest of the batsmen.

    Younus Khan is close to 50 with a strike rate, around 110 is not bad but Misbah, Malik, Afridi, Akmal and Fawad Alam need to play big shots to win. Which is more like a T20 game from now.

    Misbah is out, clean bowled trying to reverse sweep. I don’t understand why Misbah tries to play unconventional shots so early in the innings? So, there you go, the pressure is on and the run rate is bound to slow down for a while, things would be even more difficult from now onwards, unless they keep their heads cool and play sensibly. But, Pakistanis always play carelessly, recklessly and dangerously.

  32. #32 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 12, 2008 - 5:57 PM

    According to the new rules, the batting side can decide when the third power play can be taken. Malak has taken the third power play in the 37th over. I think that is once again a very selfish move BAKAOWZ he is at the crease.

    A good captain would think of taking it from 40-45 and the last 5 overs are in any case meant for slogging. It would have been a good opportunity for Afridi, Akmal, Alam and Tanvir to use the third power play but, Malak cannot think like an intelligent captain, he is such a duddoo that he can only think about himself and his performance only.

    Ps.

    With YK just got out, Fawad Alam must come in and not Kamran Akmal or even Afridi.

  33. #33 by khansahab on November 12, 2008 - 6:04 PM

    Once again, a selfless knock by Younas. Well played sir, what a player.

  34. #34 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 12, 2008 - 6:09 PM

    The reason I said, not even Afridi but Alam is because he can hold on to one end and Malik should continue at a faster pace, but they must have thought of availing the power play and got Afridi in, but the point is if Afridi doesn’t click, which is very likely due to his poor batting form then, he will be adding more pressure on Alam and Akmal. Anyways, lets see so far Abu Dhabi has been a good hunting ground for Afridi so may be he might prove me wrong.

  35. #35 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 12, 2008 - 6:20 PM

    Afridi did not prove me wrong nor did he disappoint me, it was expected BUT, its a fact that his luck is not supporting him. Butt and Younus both were dropped. But, look at the way he was caught even the commentators are stunned at this catch:

    Baker to Shahid Afridi, OUT, what a catch!! Could that be the decisive blow!! short of a length on the off stump, Afridi pulled that one uppishly towards deep square leg, that was very well struck, but Chanderpaul runs across to his right and dives to his right just inches under the boundary ropes to take a magnificent catch! Afridi goes, and the match takes a new twist. We are heading for an exciting finish here.

    Ps. And just now Shoaib Malik was dropped 🙂

  36. #36 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 12, 2008 - 6:31 PM

    With Shoaib Malik and Fawad Alam at the crease 5 overs to go and 50 runs to score, same situation as it was against Sri Lanka and Fawad Alam smashed 3 sixes in a row and changed the course of the match, and what Malak did was hitting the winning stroke for a four and became a hero. Man of the Match.

    Are they going to repeat the same performance today? Lets see.

  37. #37 by Abdul on November 12, 2008 - 6:45 PM

    What a nail bitter it’s turning out to be. Comeon and lets hit a six!

  38. #38 by Awas on November 12, 2008 - 7:01 PM

    Forget Afridi…forget Younus…Butter Finger sould be the next captain 🙂

  39. #39 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 12, 2008 - 7:04 PM

    I am pleasantly pleased to be proved wrong that the team will not win. Too, bad this will be a feather in Malak’s Pugree but, it was because of his girayeen Akmal who smashed 3 sixes and two in the crucial last over.

    Therefore, my criticism of sending Afridi ahead of Alam was justified, had Alam gone there before him things would have been different. Anyways, a win is a win, is a win.

  40. #40 by Abdul on November 12, 2008 - 7:05 PM

    Let me be the first to congratulate Pakistan on their victory to start of international cricket at the new venue and go 1 up in the series. Kamran AKMAL is the hero with 3 wonderful sixes under pressure and yet again Fawad Alam was there at the end.
    .yesssssssssssshhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  41. #41 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 12, 2008 - 7:07 PM

    Awas

    It is because of his unusual match winning performance at:

    Mohali
    Karachi
    South Africa
    and now, Abu Dhabi

    That this butter finger is ahead of other keepers! But, he is certainly not a captain material. He needs to be on tight leash to perform well, I guess lethargy gets on to him too easily.

  42. #42 by khansahab on November 12, 2008 - 7:07 PM

    A win is definitely a win and what Akmal did today was what Alam did in that T20 match a few weeks ago. Absolutely superb stuff.

    Fawad should have taken more risks but I guess he wanted to remain there until the end especially after Malik’s departure.

    Somehow I knew the match would go on until the final over and I had a little feeling Pakistan would win.

  43. #43 by Awas on November 12, 2008 - 7:33 PM

    Javed, butter finger is definitely not a captaincy material…it was just my wry sense of humour.

    For my money, I really think Younus will be made a captain and deservingly so. No doubt, Mr T will agree with me.

    Afridi’s elongated bad patch with batting cannot give confidence to the Establishment which is a real shame. He is no Imran Khan (no one is for that matter) and neither is he Mike Brearly if batting performance is to be disregarded.

    As khansahab said, it’s good that Imran has spoken too as has Inzi and many others, who matter, before him. Malik’s captaincy days are definitely numbered. So, there remains only one solid choice and that is Younus…watch my words.

  44. #44 by Abdul on November 13, 2008 - 9:25 AM

    The dream Pakistan team would be……………

    1) Imran Nazir
    2)Imran Farhat
    3) Younis Khan
    4) Misbah Ul hUQ
    5) Shoaib Malik
    6) Fawad Alam
    7) Kamran Akmarl
    8) Sohail Tanvir
    9) Mansoor Amjad
    10) Yasir Arafat
    11) Umar Gul.

    Subs in the squad include

    Saed Ajmal
    Sohail Khan
    Kharum Manzoor

    This would be my dream team for Pakistan fixtures regarding the ICL players allowed to represent the country with the convincing evidence approed by president ZADARI. I have based my team on an explosive opneing partnership to dominate the opposition with some stylish strokeplay to ultilize the powerplays. Another feature of this team is the spinners. I have decided to include a specialist spinner in Mansoor Amjad whom after his 20/20 hatrick seems to have vanished and also Sead Ajaml is in the ranks with his off breaks and not to forget Malik and Fawad can both chip in to. Yasir Arafat is an excellent odi player and adds plenty of depth to the batting and on his day can be brutal with the ball and therefore I’ve opted for his inclusion.

  45. #45 by khansahab on November 13, 2008 - 4:29 PM

    I am watching the final of ICL and I must express my disappointment with Inzamam and the Lahore team.

    Firstly Azhar Mahmood was alleged to have tampered with the ball. Dean Jones and other commentators were very upset about this. In the past we have accused the “white” commentators of being racist and accusing Pakistanis without good reason, but we have to accept that there must be something for so many accusations to come to light. I know the white cricket nations now accept that reverse swing is not cheating, but Imran Khan has admitted previously that he tampered with the ball in a county game.

    Secondly, Inzamam and Azhar Mahmood argued with the umpire when the ball was changed. The batsmen could not see the ball and the law states if the umpires feel the ball is not properly visible and should be changed, the bowling side cannot do anything about it. But Inzamam kept arguing and it looked very unprofessional on part of a man who has played international cricket for 18 years now.

    Thirdly, Rana Naved kept provoking Razzaq and he was very uncouth in his behaviour when the umpires intervened between Razzaq and Rana. Rana pointed his finger at the umpire and showed enormous disrespect. I have never seen anyone behaving like that with an umpire. The whole incident reeked of uncouthness and absence of any decency and refinement.

    I don’t know why it is Pakistanis who keep getting into trouble over these things. These 3 incidents have left me quite upset.

  46. #46 by Abdul on November 13, 2008 - 7:03 PM

    Khanshab these are indeed 3 very upsetting incidents but I agree with Dean Jones that ball tampering is equal to a batsmen knicking one and not walking because that in my opinion is also cheating.Regarding the spirit I feel it was just overexcitement from Rana of getting his fellow team mate out and just over reacting which in my opinion is wrong but just a minor incidnent. And finally Inzy at the toss was classic. He said he was going to bat first but then luckly commentator Pat Symox spotted his intentions were to field first because of the due factor and also Inzy mumbling his words and intentions.

    Never the less we won and are 1 up in the 3 match finals and Imran Farhat innings claimed the man of the match award. Just to emphasise a point Rana Naved Ul Hassan has been instrumental throughout this tournament with his allround matchwinning performances and is the favourite canidate to claim the man of the tournament award.

  47. #47 by khansahab on November 13, 2008 - 7:13 PM

    Abdul

    I am agree with you about everything, but as to that “over excitement” point, Rana was too immature and should have not let his excitement get him carried away. He looked like a stupid little kid arguing with Razzaq and the umpires.

    He is the best T20 player though- he is a genius in fact as far as T20 is concerned.

  48. #48 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 13, 2008 - 10:00 PM

    abdul

    the club team that you have made for your mohalla, your name is missing from it, how come?

    khansahab

    Rana Naiyee is Rana Naiyee you cannot expect anything decent from him. Its a shame that Inzamam had to get involved in a petty brawl.

    Btw, what is your team for tomorrow’s game? Rather, for the 2nd ODI in A/D. You think they will make changes? Who is gonna replace who? Is the Khalifa fit?

  49. #49 by Varun Suri on November 14, 2008 - 12:21 AM

    If nothing else Shoaib Malik has certainly luck on his stride just like HAMAR DHONIYAA and Akmal has vowed to hit a Six for every Catch dropped!!!

    What an amazing finish i had pressed Alt+F4 after Afridi got out thinking that it might be over soon!! But true to it’s Character Pakistan bounced back and ultimately won the Game even after Gayle’s heroics. Although i could not watch the game but i was following it from my Work. This is one thing which every Indian should admire in Pakistan’s Cricket, the ability to bounce back and do the un-do-able!!
    In Recent times, We have also got a taste of this kind of feeling and it feels to good to savour it for you may never know as someone has said,

    “The future is uncertain
    and the end is always near”

    Akhthar bowled 7 overs on Thursday during practice, pata nahi aaj kitne daale? Any chances of him coming back for another Guest Appearence? I am not sure what Pakistani Fans want as the result of this as quite a few of them along with some Ex-players are gradually and gradually turning against the Captain? If he fails in this series will he be removed for Captancy? I don’t know if he is as Shrewd as some people think but definitely he knows when to perform!

    It is quite unfortunate that the future of Ind-Pak series is in doubt, but i do not think it is because of fatigue or anything like that because if that’s the case then they should not be looking forward to this England series as it starts within a week of a gruelsome series and also only 5 players:- Openers, Dhoniya, Bhajji te Zaheer Kahn will be playing in the first few Games and infact they do have a decent break after the end of this Series and the begining of the scheduled Ind-Pak.I do not know if Security is really the only issue for which this series is in doubt?

  50. #50 by khansahab on November 14, 2008 - 12:40 AM

    Abdul

    No Shahid Afridi in your line up?

    Javed A Khan

    For some reason no reports have emerged over Actor’s fitness. So my guess is, he is still uncertain and it will be a last minute decision whether to include him or not.

    My line up will be the same, except that obviously if Akhtar is present Rauf will have to sit out. I might take a gamble and replace Fawad with Ajmal. The track looked like it had something for spinners.

    What I would have liked to see is playing Afridi in Manzoor’s position and using an extra bowler in Ajmal. But since Manzoor batted well, I guess that won’t happen. If Butt is not feeling confident they can open with Afridi and Manzoor but I don’t anticipate such presence of mind of Malik.

  51. #51 by khansahab on November 14, 2008 - 12:57 AM

    Varun

    What are your thoughts on India-England series?

    I reckon India will wipe the floor with them, but England can surprise. So India shouldn’t be complacent.

    Do you agree with the squad?

    Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain and wicketkeeper), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Suresh Raina, Yuvraj Singh, Yusuf Pathan, Rohit Sharma, Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan, Munaf Patel, Ishant Sharma, Pragyan Ojha, Rudra Pratap Singh, Virat Kohli and Murali Vijay.

  52. #52 by Varun Suri on November 14, 2008 - 1:24 AM

    Well, being an un reasonable fan, I should not accept anything less than a Blooddy Whitewash against them the kind of Form the Indian Team is in!! but then it is Team India we always believe in equal opportunities for everyone so i am sure they will lose atleast 1 or 2 Games.

    My squad for 1st Game would be:-
    ( not in the batting Order, Middle Order could be flexible depending on the situation)

    Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Suresh Raina, Yuvraj Singh,Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain and wicketkeeper), Rohit Sharma, Yusuf Pathan, Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan, Rudra Pratap Singh, Munaf Patel/Ojha?.

    Ishant Sharma is missing the 1st ODI and Murali Vijay looks like a better Test replacement at the moment. They should not be trying out so many Yooongsters also at the same time for example Virat Kohli should be playing Domeshtic for some more time.

  53. #53 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 14, 2008 - 9:05 AM

    INDIA has murdered England bowling, especially Yuvraj Singh with his 64 ball 100 and 138 in 78 balls with 16 fours and 6 sixes. And because of that, he has got the privilege of sitting in the pavilion and watching the match like a spectator.

    England have a daunting total of 387 ahead of them and already 4 down with just 60 odd runs on the board. Most worrying for them is the remaining 325 runs in 35 overs an average of 9 plus runs per over. Neither Collingwood, nor Pietersen can do anything from here. England is well within the grip of the jaws of defeat.

    Zaheer bowled well, but he was lucky to get Flintoff’s wicket which was a poor judgment on part of the umpire. The ball pitched way outside the off-stump and he gave him lbw. Unlucky Flintoff.

    Varun

    Please don’t be amazed of Pakistan’s ability of bouncing back from just one single performance, they amaze many when the play the next match and throw away a match which they could have easily won. So, lets see what they have to do after a couple of hours when the 2nd ODI starts in Abu Dhabi.

  54. #54 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 14, 2008 - 9:46 AM

    CHOR chori say jaye
    Haira phairy say na jaye

    Aur Harbhajjan apni harkaton say baaz na aye

    After getting Samit Patel’s wicket he was waving him bye-bye and the commentator David Lloyd was saying, Oh, puleez don do that the match referee will talk to you if you do that …

    The only notional value of the match is Peitersen on the ground, he is an entertainer and as a captain he is leading from the front.

  55. #55 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 14, 2008 - 9:53 AM

    MY bad, perhaps I jinxed him, the next ball KP was run out.

    Ravi Bopara has done it again. The last time I remember he did the same to either KP or Flintoff and went so close to winning the match on his own but, failed. However, today its a very different situation. England are miles behind the target they can only play till the end to say we played 50 overs! Even that would be an achievement.

  56. #56 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 14, 2008 - 11:38 AM

    Varun;

    I told you that Pakistan team can amaze a lot of people and there you go, this is Pakistan team both openers gone within 2 overs and now they are 7/2 as opposed to India’s openers they gave a flying start of 127 in less than 20 overs. The reason Yuvraj Singh was able to play a carefree innings is because the top order laid a solid foundation and he knew that behind him is Dhoni and Rohit Sharma.

    Dhoni has a very philosophical approach towards his players. On one occasion the batsman nudged the ball in deep fine leg and Munaf Patel took a slow start towards the ball, but two other fielders from square leg and deep square leg approached and one of them got the ball before Munaf could even reach. And, Dhoni’s comments were like this:

    ” Jo pehlay bhaagay ga Wo ball per pehlay pahonchay ga.”

    Later, when Stuart Broad was surprised at a bouncing ball from Harbhajjan and closed his eyes and played an uppish shot which went for a four through the vacant leg slip, Dhoni commented:

    “Yae murtay, murtay bhee ankh band ker kay chowka maar liya.”

  57. #57 by Awas on November 14, 2008 - 1:15 PM

    It will be good to see if Afridi’s fortunes (as well as Pakistan’s) turn around. It’s about time too. Enough overs left for Afridi to fire. He seems to be going sensibly than going berserk from 1st ball. So, lets see…

  58. #58 by Amit. P on November 14, 2008 - 1:32 PM

    158/5 in 38 overs ….. Akmal and Afridi shud stay there till last … and shud post a target of 250. If they do so then i dont think this will an “easy” target for WI.

    What a batting display India have shown today. They kept on testing their own limit. From “good” to “cool” to “fantastic” till yuvraj bored every spectator with his strokeplay. Really in the end i was abusing the curator to prepare this kinda falt pitch. Though 380 was above the mark for any kinda surface.

  59. #59 by Awas on November 14, 2008 - 1:42 PM

    Pathetic team performance. They shouldn’t have discarded Fawad Alam…

  60. #60 by khansahab on November 14, 2008 - 2:33 PM

    Yuvraj, what a player…..

    India can’t do with him and they can’t do without….

    Pakistan were pathetic. Unless something exceptional happens I think West Indies ought to win comfortably.

    Let us see how Saeed Ajmal performs…..

  61. #61 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 14, 2008 - 4:08 PM

    Well 232 is not a good total to defend, may be 250-260 would have been better. Now, that Tanvir has started off well after a long time and got rid of both openers there seems to be some hope i.e., if only they can get rid of Chanderpaul and Sarwan, especially Chanderpaul can stick till the end and build small partnerships and he also has this knack of changing gears. If Pakistan were 7/2, WI were 14/2 but in the first ten overs Pak were 37/2 and WI are 27/2 but, this means nothing match can change in just one over.

    To quote, Waqar “This Crikate is a funny game, in one ball the game can be changed in two balls” so, it is indeed funny! I mean Waqar’s quote.

    The game is in 13th over now and in my opinion its time now Malik should introduce spin. First he should bring in Afridi from one end if he breaks the partnership then Anjum should bowl his complete quota of 10 overs because he is the “khudda” bowler at the moment. Then Saeed Ajmal should be introduced. Keep Tanvir and Gul for the last overs. But, Malik and his Girgiti aqal who knows what he is going to do?

  62. #62 by Abdul on November 14, 2008 - 5:21 PM

    With so much going on international cricket at the moment it’s time to access and evaluate the situation of Pakistan cricket at this point of mid November.

    The supproters of Pakistan are focusing on 2 main things at the moment . One being the national side with a series in Wetsindies and the other maybe more importanly and interestingly is the Lahore Badshahs whom seem who are invinclible form and absoulutely ruthless in the ICL. As said by the commentators many players from this squad definately deserve recognition and one can possibly ask how you can possibly neglect such talent. The players I’m emphasising on here is mainly Nazir and Farhat who are two close friends and have had plenty of practice batting together and indeed support each other very well. And regarding there batting they are both players with extraordinary taleent and very stylish stroke players who can dominate the opposition with sheer class. The Pakistani supporters love it and the record of both of them in the ICL has been impressive and in my opinion they are the answer to Pakistan’s contionous woes with opening pairs. Rgarding Rana he is in the form of his life and is unarguably one of the best in the world but I feel his Pakistani days are over and he can be bogged down with injury and also feel he won’t be able to transfrom his brilliance into the international arena. Another name which is hard to to neglect is the class of Mohmamed Yousuf who i feel wil be required at test cricket.Overall it’s nice to hear these players making a name fro themselves,enoying there cricket and making a name fro Paksitan to and lets hope the likes of Nazir will be allowed to represent Pakistan again because oh boy it’s an extraordinary talent whose performance deserves recognition.

    Meanhile the national side is lacking some key names and requires to be strenghtened. But who can balame when they are winning like on Wednesday.

    This is what I feel they need…………………….

    – Specialist spinner as Saed Ajmal hasn’t really impressed me.
    -Specialist spinner should include someone like Kaneria or even Mansoor Amjad
    – A strong opening partnership
    – Dropping Shahid Afridi who is in my opinion just simply not a good cricketer.
    – Brushing up on the fielding aspect and take on more resposnibility in the health and fitness. They should follow the Badshahs who are taking a good amount of focus in this area.

    Anyway lets celebarte and enjoy Pakistan in action let it be ICL or in Abu Dhabi. Whether it’s ICL or Abu Dhabi lets enjoy the success of our national heroes and recognize there performances

  63. #63 by khansahab on November 14, 2008 - 5:28 PM

    Akmal dropped another catch off Afridi today…..

  64. #64 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 14, 2008 - 5:31 PM

    abdul

    you have done a very long “accessment” and evaluation for “mid-november” to make it short, all your problems will be over if you remove Shoaib Malik from the team. He is not worth being the captain, its not just me, the whole of Pakistan, all the senior players including, Imran Khan, Miandad, Inzamam, Mohammad Yousuf are saying this, wait and see Shoaib Akhtar will also join them.

    Shahid Afridi has finally broken the partnership. Those who are partnership breakers are hated BAKAOZ thats a mean job not only in cricket but in real world too.

    120 runs in 19 overs at an average of 6.31 with 6 wickets in hand, is still an achievable target as long as banderpaul is there 🙂 he can do it. His batting stance is unique and he is hell of a chipkoo player. One of the best in test cricket today.

  65. #65 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 14, 2008 - 5:37 PM

    khansahab

    yae milli bhagat hai Akmal ki aur Malik ki but, Malik is so mean he keeps Siyali Bhagat away from Akmal.

  66. #66 by khansahab on November 14, 2008 - 5:38 PM

    ANOTHER CATCH DROPPED BY AKMAL, BOWLER AGAIN IS SHAHID AFRIDI

  67. #67 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 14, 2008 - 5:43 PM

    I think the PCB must demand and explanation from Akmal, Malik and the selectors for this pathetic wicket keeping performance.

    Akmal BC nay ek match jita diya now he will drop 10 catches. Afridi batted well today nothing significant but better than his recent batting performance but he has been bowling exceptionally well had these two dropped catches held, match would have turned in Pakistan’s favour. But Akmal and Malik’s conspiracy is to keep Afridi away. The only way he can get a wicket now is by way of lbw, c&w or, clean bowled.

  68. #68 by khansahab on November 14, 2008 - 5:48 PM

    Now Saeed Ajmal dropped a catch off Afridi.

  69. #69 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 14, 2008 - 5:53 PM

    EXACTLY this is what I was going to say, if it is not Akmal it is Ajmal and he has dropped Chanderpaul twice. Once at Anjum’s bowling and now of Shahid Afridi’s.

    Did you notice each time they dropped catch of Afridi’s bowling he got pissed off and bowled a loose ball and it went off for a four. This is the second time happened in three overs.

    What is Ajmal’s prospects? He bowled pretty mediocre and dropped two simple catches and both of a very dangerous batsman. If he is such a butterfingered a$$hole he should go back to the academy and do fielding practice first.

  70. #70 by khansahab on November 14, 2008 - 7:10 PM

    Tanvir was the star today and Afridi also bowled quite well. All the bowlers were fairly decent.

    However the fact that Pakistan does not have a world class bowler is showing because Gayle got out in the last match after scoring his century and Chanderpaul remained unbeaten today. It is accepted they are world class batsmen, but you need a world class bowler to dismiss a world class batsman.

    It’s sad how simple catches were dropped off Afridi; he could have obtained another 2 wickets if Akmal and Ajmal had hung on to their catches.

    It was known and accepted Pakistan would win this series. West Indies are like a minnow team, they have one of the worst domestic cricket set ups and apart from Gayle, Sarwan and Chanderpaul, they have no good batsmen. If Pakistan play like this, South Africa, India and Australia can beat them very easily.

  71. #71 by khansahab on November 14, 2008 - 7:17 PM

    PCB furious at ‘unfit’ Shoaib’s inclusion

    Press Trust Of India

    Posted on Nov 14, 2008 at 21:14

    Karachi: Pacer Shoaib Akhtar’s continued struggle with fitness has irked the Pakistan Cricket Board officials and selectors, who are now questioning his selection in the side.

    Shoaib, still struggling with a calf strain failed a fitness test ahead of the second one-dayer in Abu Dhabi on Friday, raising serious questions whether he was fit enough to be included in the national team.

    Shoaib was picked in the side for the ODI series against West Indies after playing a couple of Twenty20 matches and two first class games where too his fitness remained doubtful as he bowled in short spells.

    “This latest injury really does raise serious questions whether Shoaib has the fitness levels and stamina to survive for long in international cricket,” one former Test player said.

    Sources within the PCB said Chairman Ejaz Butt and selectors were not happy with the way Shoaib had strained his calf muscle during the team’s first training session in Abu Dhabi.

    One source said that Butt has directed the selectors to ensure that in future only 100 per cent fit players would be picked in the national team and those with even a slight doubt over fitness should be ignored.

    Shoaib returned to the national side after remaining on the sidelines since last December due to fitness and disciplinary issues.

    Interestingly, Shoaib himself has said he can play for another two to three years for Pakistan.

  72. #72 by Abdul on November 14, 2008 - 7:34 PM

    DELIGHTFUL as Pakistan wrap yp the series. Gul and Tnavir was outstanding but now they must keep focused and concentrate on nothing but a whitewash.

  73. #73 by Amit. P on November 14, 2008 - 7:56 PM

    Nice frame khansahab …. i am loving it ..simple, lite and sexy.

    Today pakistan pulled up consecutive great victory … seems like they are playing as a unit, everyone contributing here and there. This kinda win boost significant team morale.If Pakistan keep playing like this then malik is here to stay … today he used his brain and introduced spin in the final 5 overs. Over all its good sign for pakistan team. One final thing .. they shud play Ajmal on regular basis.

  74. #74 by JAVED A. KHAN on November 14, 2008 - 8:09 PM

    I wonder how and why Akmal held a catch on Ajmal’s bowling. Like most countries don’t trust playing in Pakistan is safe and secure, I don’t trust the spirit in which the players play as a team. There is a lot more than what meets the eye. There is certainly a plan and an element of jingoism in certain players who are out there to let down their own fellow players and on top of the list is the captain himself.

    Now, the Wadee Butt is trying to cover his butt after seeing public outcry on why the Actor was sent to Abu Dhabi? Initially he was blind perhaps his eyes were behind that he couldn’t see that Actor is a big drama baaz. Why do you have to trust his word that he is fully fit or he can play cricket for 3 – 4 years? Sure, he will say that because its hard for him to accept that he is old and unfit as a fast bowler.

    To test his physical fitness he need be asked to bowl 10 overs in a row but, he should be asked to pad up, put up a helmet, carry a cricket bat and then he should be asked to run on the ground at full speed for 10 minutes, if he stops they should let the dogs chase him to run for his life. Thats the only way to check out whether he is fit or not. This sounds a bit weired but thats the way you must treat this guy.

  75. #75 by Pawan on November 14, 2008 - 8:31 PM

    A poem dedicated to Ganguly…

    …Warrior….

    A warrior of blood
    One destined to lead a nation
    A Warrior of blood
    Meant to rule it all

    Pulled a sword out of stone
    A nation out of shame
    Died in a battle
    But never lost his name

    His body may be gone
    Withered away from the past
    But his name still is heard
    And his soul still rides the wind of time

  76. #76 by Varun Suri on November 14, 2008 - 10:25 PM

    So once again like i’d said before Pakistan bounced back and took it!!
    Unless until there is a crushing defeat in the Ind-Pak series, I think MA-LAK is here to stay!!!

    Pawan, appreciate your effort

    On a different note i stumbled across this funny video somewhere on the net, thought to share it with you all. There is this bit in between where Yuvraj says ” Wasim bhai used to come specially to India for YOGA”.

    I can’t believe he’s the same Wasim who “kicked-ass” Once upon a time, When he was in the Cricket Field I never imagined that he would be doing the job he’s doing now?

    http://cricketsbestvideos.blogspot.com/2008/02/yuvraj-singh-interview-in-australia.html

  77. #77 by khansahab on November 15, 2008 - 10:16 AM

    Amit P/Pawan/Varun

    Do you think it’s safe to say India is the no 1 team in Test cricket at the moment?

    Or do you think South Africa is better?

    Even South Africa don’t have a quality spinner, like Australia. Their pace attack is good, but I don’t see much difference again compared to Australia; Lee, Clark and Johnson are world class bowlers.

  78. #78 by khansahab on November 15, 2008 - 10:20 AM

    Your poem was very good, Pawan.

    Ganguly will be missed and his biggest contribution to India was as captain. Dhoni is following Ganguly’s footsteps.

    However, even as a batsman he was very good. He dismantled every bowling attack, played good innings under pressure, and made runs everywhere. Towards the end of his career he had improved his on-side play and his weakness against the short ball. This guy had guts, determination to succeed and plenty of natural ability too.

  79. #79 by Varun Suri on November 15, 2008 - 10:50 AM

    khansahab,

    I would wait a year or two to say that India is No. 1. To be No.1 the most important thing is consistency. If India plays well against England and later Pakistan and then the Away series in New Zealand followed by West Indies in June, the rankings will also gradually show who’s the leader if there’s any as at this moment i would say India, SA, Aus and Srilanka are almost at the same level with Eng and Pak not far behind. Pakistan unfortunately have got enough opportunities in the past one year but still most of the time they have ended up on a winning note so if they get to play a lot next year who knows they might also spring a surprise in the top league?

    Regarding spinners, I would say that no doubt because of the suddenly available vast pool of players Indian Team could be the most balanced team but whether the players will be able to perform well continiously and also cope up with regular replacements/substitutions only time will tell. One could argue on the position of an All Rounder as India don’t seem to have one,
    But who needs an allrounder if your 6 Batsmen and 5 Bowlers do the Job?

  80. #80 by khansahab on November 15, 2008 - 10:52 AM

    Hayden is a sore loser: Wasim Akram

    Pace legend Wasim Akram has called Matthew Hayden and Team Australia “sore losers” for terming India a “third-world country” and said the Aussies always get personal when they lose.

    “The thing about the Aussies is that they are sore losers. They get personal when they get beaten. It is all a matter of sour grapes and after going home, they’ve started calling India a third-world country.

    “India is a superpower now; it is a hundred years ahead of Australia, which is no more than a village, as compared to India. You don’t blame sightscreens for poor overrates. Even Allan Border was critical of Australian tactics on the pitch,” Akram told Mobile ESPN from Karachi.

    Hayden, who had a below par run in the recently concluded four-Test series, Thursday termed India a “third-world country” where people around the sightscreen led to delays resulting in slow over rates.

    The BCCI has also reacted strongly to his comment saying it was “completely uncalled for”.

    “If slow-over rate is your habit, why blame India for that and call India third world? We are a very prestigious nation and it was not a nice comment by him,” BCCI Finance Committee Chairman Rajiv Shukla said.

  81. #81 by khansahab on November 15, 2008 - 11:19 AM

    PCB may hire Waqar as bowling coach

    Press Trust Of India

    Posted on Nov 14, 2008 at 19:55

    Karachi: The Pakistan Cricket Board may hire former pacer Waqar Younis as the bowling coach of the national team, sources said on Friday.

    Younis, who resigned as bowling coach last year after a public spat with former PCB chairman Nasim Ashraf, has cordial relations with current chairman Ejaz Butt and is also very close to PCB Manager Yawar Saeed, one source claimed.

    The offer could be made in Abu Dhabi as Younis is there as a commentator and Butt and Yawar were also there to watch Pakistan’s one-day series against the West Indies.

    Waqar and Yawar are very good friends and the Pakistan manager would definitely like to see the former captain back as bowling coach,” one source said.

    “There is every likelihood of a meeting being arranged to decide whether Waqar can take up the bowling coach role soon.” Younis, who retired in 2003 after the World Cup, was the team’s bowling coach for a few months but when PCB refused to send him for the 2007 World Cup, he resigned.

    The former paceman however, had recently said that he was ready to come forward again if PCB wants his services.

    “There is a possibility that before the Test series against India in January, the Board will appoint a full-fledged support team to work with chief coach Intikhab Alam,” one source said.

    The source added that in all likelihood Younis will be appointed the bowling coach, Ejaz Ahmed as fielding coach and former Test opener Shoaib Mohammad will be hired as the batting coach.

  82. #82 by khansahab on November 15, 2008 - 1:07 PM

    Varun

    I support the notion that all rounders are not needed if the batsmen and bowlers fulfill their respective roles. Unless you have an all rounder of the calibre of Flintoff or Kallis, you should always look to have decent batsmen and bowlers first.

    I don’t think you can put Pakistan on the same pedestal as teams like South Africa and India. Most of what Pakistan has played in the past year have been minnow teams. A “B” grade team from India can defeat these minnow teams Pakistan played.

    Pakistan is having huge problems from all areas, whether that is opening, running between the wickets, fitness of bowlers or captaincy. Nothing is right with this team at the moment.

    To make matters worse, the international situation is such that Pakistan is not playing top sides like Australia and South Africa. If Pakistan plays these sides they will get thumped and the PCB will realise the need to have fitter and more committed youngsters in the team. They will also realise what a pathetic captain Malik is.

  83. #83 by Abdul on November 15, 2008 - 1:53 PM

    Pawan.great poem about the legendary DADA !

  84. #84 by Amit. P on November 15, 2008 - 4:05 PM

    Khansahab,

    I agree here what Varun has said. To be no.1 you have to actually beat every other team consistently, specially in their own backyard. India still have to go a long way to achieve this. They need to play each and every series with the same intensity that they carry while playing against Oz. Injuries too will play a part here, considering the hectic cricketing schedule of BCCI. In 90s Indian team used to play 5 test matches in a calender year, sometimes 3. Now they are playing atleast 10 tests and number of ODIs too have increased, not to mention IPL and t20s. So, motivation and injuries will be the key factors that will decide the fate of this current team.

    About other teams, i believe Aus is still no. 1 team …. they need some more beating before they slip from top position 😀 . Other teams that can challenge Aus, are SA and Eng. For that matter, next 9 months or so will clear the picture ab’t Aus position. I place SL and Pak both at the same level and are not much behind other teams except Aus, as Varun said. The bad thing ab’t Pak is they are playing limited cricket so one series loss puts everybody in hysteria. Other end is India … hardly a week has gone after Aus series .. they are against Eng. Optimality lies somewhere between these two extremes.

  85. #85 by Amit. P on November 15, 2008 - 4:08 PM

    Pawan,

    Good one buddy! The legend of DADA will continue forever.

  86. #86 by Abdul on November 15, 2008 - 5:04 PM

    Have we got a match on our hands at the ICL. young blood Shaid Yousuf is batting like a master. He’s only 22 and should unarguably play for Pakistan.

  87. #87 by Varun Suri on November 15, 2008 - 5:28 PM

    The reason you gave for not putting Pakistan on the same pedestal as SA and India is not valid BA-KAOZ :-

    1. Pakistan simply hasn’t played enough Cricket so as to compare them with say India who are in the process of playing their 4th Series against a quality opposition this Year and it;s not going to stop here in the first 6 months next year they will play NZ in NZ which will be a very good test for our Yooongster Batsmensss and also Ishant Sharma, Will he be able to exploit the NZ conditions to the maximum and rip through a weak NZ batting? or the Indian Batsmen will succumb to NZ Rookie pacemens?

    2. Most of the problems you cited Pakistan has always had a share of those problems at some time or other. But when they are on the Cricket Field one can be sure that Regional Politics and other kinds of problems do not effect the Team’s performance except until now if Akmal repeatedly drops on Afridi’s bowling!!

    So to conclude, I agree it will be a long way up for Pakistan to shake up the rankings and other such numbers but still if and when they will be against a quality opposition one should not make the mistake of writing them off completely and only when they have been given enough chances one can accurately judge how the Pakistan team stands in comparison to others.

  88. #88 by Varun Suri on November 15, 2008 - 5:32 PM

    I think very soon we should see a similar Fotu of Wasim Akram as Altaf Pphai with Indian Passport!!

  89. #89 by khansahab on November 16, 2008 - 12:22 PM

    I don’t understand Khurram Manzoor’s technique here. He has been dropped twice and he is still batting like it’s a Test match. Younis has played a much more fluent and convincing innings.

  90. #90 by Abdul on November 16, 2008 - 12:26 PM

    Well the ICL is going to the climax today after Hyderbad Heroes leveled procedings in the 2nd final last night. The match was thoroughly entertaining with the match swinging both ways and indeed some controversy after that awesome catch by Justin Kemp. It was quite unbelievable the match was delayed after the Badshahs players told Sami to stay on the pitch after the 3rd umpire gave him. It’s just ashameful for the spirit and discipline of Pakistan cricket.Also hilarious to see words being echanged between the Hyderbad Heroes coach Steve Rixon and Azhar Mahmood. Did anyone else see this ?

    Nevertheless we have arrived at the conclusion of the ICL and it’s a winner take all affair with unarguably by far the 2 most entertaining and strongest sides in the competetion and after yesterdays match it’s GAME ON – it will be a war out there !

  91. #91 by Abdul on November 16, 2008 - 12:31 PM

    Pakistan are also featuring in international cricket with the dead rubber against the Westindies. Even though Pakistan have won the series they will want a whitewash in Abu Dhabi. Looking at the scorecard at the moment we have been very slow going through the powerplays and that’s why I say Farhat and Nazir is what’s required to spice up this period of play.

    Meanwhile there is a movie Mohabatein on tonight as freeview for my typical Weekly Movie on Sunday evenings and regarding Pakistan with both affaris thay are involved in today I shall be keen to watch the movie as I haven’t as yet.

    See you guys soon and enjoy your day.

  92. #92 by khansahab on November 16, 2008 - 12:34 PM

    PCB sticks to hosting India cricket series in Pakistan

    Saturday, 15 Nov, 2008

    ABU DHABI: Pakistan cricket officials Saturday termed shifting of their home series against India to neutral venues as ‘mere speculation’, saying preparations are at full swing in their country.
    India is scheduled to tour Pakistan in January-February to play a side game, three Tests, five one-day internationals and a Twenty20 but the tour is already in doubt over the security situation in the host country.
    But Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chief operating officer Salim Altaf voiced confidence the series would go ahead as per the schedule.
    ‘We have not heard anything from the Indian Board and until we hear something contrary, Indian team will play the first match on the 9th January in Hyderabad and the first Test starts on the 13th in Karachi,’ Altaf told reporters.
    The Indian government cancelled a low-profile junior hockey team’s tour to Pakistan over security fears earlier this week, further raising doubts over the cricket series.But Altaf disagreed that the move would affect cricket.
    ‘The cricket tour is a high profile one, with both the boards guided by what their governments tell them, and normally there is a security assessment tour which will take place before the series,’ said Altaf.
    If Pakistan were forced to shift the series to the neutral venues of Abu Dhabi and Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates or to England in summer, they would endanger their home series against Australia in March and the Champions Trophy in September next year.
    Australia was the first to shun a tour of Pakistan in March this year over security fears. They rescheduled the Tests for March 2009 and one-day matches for 2010.
    The International Cricket Council, forced to put off the Trophy over security fears in August this year over security fears, rescheduled the event to September next year but said Pakistan hosting India will be a trial for the elite event.
    Altaf said the option of neutral venues would only be considered as a last resort.
    ‘Our chairman (Ijaz Butt) has a flexible approach and if that situation arises we have the option of the UAE and England but what we have seen in the past is that revenues earned at neutral venues are not encouraging,’ said Altaf.
    ‘Pakistan this year had no international cricket and the ardent admirers have missed Australia and so India should come so that we have other teams and other events in our country,’ said Altaf, a former Pakistan paceman.

  93. #93 by khansahab on November 16, 2008 - 1:36 PM

    There is a rumour going round that Malik is deliberately taking the powerplays whenever Afridi is not batting, so that Afridi does not score and he can be quickly pushed out from the team.

  94. #94 by Awas on November 16, 2008 - 4:53 PM

    Imran Nazir is definitely fast becoming Afridi like. He has just scored a 16 ball 50. I don’t know where it rates in terms of fastest 50 but very good indeed. Pakistan should do well to have Afridi and Imran Nazir as T20 and ODI openers.

    Badshahs are 86/0 after just 6 overs. They cannot and should not loose from this position.

  95. #95 by Amit. P on November 16, 2008 - 5:46 PM

    What a knock by Nazir! Badshah fans must be a huppy bunch …. now PCB shud act fast and show middle finger to BCCI by including Nazir into their playing eleven.

    Abdul,

    In previous ICL final, Azhar mahmood was abusing Kiran More … who i think is director/coordinator of this whole ICL event. 😀

  96. #96 by khansahab on November 16, 2008 - 6:17 PM

    What a match between Badshahs and Heroes. In the end Atul Wassan asked the right question to Inzamam, whether he felt he was playing in Lahore or Karachi.

    It was a tremendous sight to see the Badshahs going round the whole stadium and the crowd running to the boundary to support them.

    Imran Nazir is a class act. His innings reminded me of Afridi’s onslaught in Kanpur. It is Pakistan’s loss that he is not playing T20 cricket for Pakistan. A truly special player.

  97. #97 by Abdul on November 16, 2008 - 6:26 PM

    CONGRATULATIONS to all Pakistan fans for victories all round. IMRAN NAZIR WAS OUTSTANDING AND EXTREMELY STYLISH AND RUTHLESS TO GIVE THE BADSHAHS VICTORY IN THE ICL. Imran Nazir scored 111 including 11 sixes and 7 fours and took the Hyderbad bolwers to the cleaners with his dominant and explosive strokeplay. The fieling side couldn’t simply do nothing other than stand back and admire and applaud the brilliance . It was one of the best knocks played and the best in t20 cricket.He played every shot in the book from the late cut,to the hit back past the sitescreen and also going inside out over cover first ball. He hit the ball cleanly to all parts of the park including hitting the biggest six of the tournanament and this innings was the highest score in the ICL.

    Just to emphasise on my continous point of this great player and outstanding talent any side around the world let it be Austrlia,Southafrica, Bangladesh or whatever will be extremly grateful to have a player of such quality and their will be many bolwers praying not to bowl to him which just shows what a classy act he is.

    So Pakistan should stop mowing and piling up these ridiculous bans and allow Nazir to open and play for Pakistan. He has got many hopeful years ahead and it’s vital to utlize him NOW with the amount of t20 cricket around. Such a fantastic performance secured victory and the title for the Badshahs.

    LAHORE BADSHAHS ROCK !

  98. #98 by khansahab on November 16, 2008 - 6:44 PM

    Wasim has change of heart about skipper Malik

    KARACHI: Former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram said on Saturday that the current skipper Shoaib Malik has proved him wrong by shining both as a player and leader in recent international matches.

    “Till last year I believed that Malik is not a good choice (as Pakistan captain),” Akram told reporters here. “But he has proved me wrong by performing really well in most of the matches Pakistan have played this year,” he added.

    Malik, 26, led Pakistan to back-to-back wins against the West Indies in Abu Dhabi earlier this week and is now looking to win the three-match ODI series 3-0.

    The Sialkot-born all-rounder was chosen to lead Pakistan in the aftermath of their embarrassing first round exit from the 2007 World Cup. Many former Test cricketers including Akram rejected him as a weak captain.

    Akram said he has changed him mind. “I think Malik should be retained as captain,” he said.

    The PCB appointed Malik till the end of this year and will be deciding whether to retain him for the all-important home series against India starting from early next year at a meeting of its Governing Board next month.

    Speaking on a different issue, Akram said that the ICC should give official status to the rebel ICL.

    “The ICC should sanction ICL and I believe it will have to do that soon,” said Akram.

    He pointed out that the current ICL season has attracted some well-known cricketers especially from Pakistan and the league’s matches are attracting huge crowds that sometimes number more than 70,000. “The sort of cricket that is being played in the ICL and the huge crowds its matches are attracting is a proof that the ICL will eventually get recognition,” he said.

    Akram stressed that some of the Pakistani cricketers playing in the league are still good for national duty. “Players like Rana Naved-ul-Hasan, Imran Farhat, Imran Nazir, Mohammad Sami can still play for Pakistan.”

    Akram believes that Pakistan will suffer a lot after banning their premier batsman Mohammad Yousuf, who joined the ICL recently. “Yousuf is a great batsman and Pakistan will miss him once it starts playing the big games.”

    Pakistan banned Yousuf from all cricket after he signed up to play for the ICL.

    Akram also spoke on the question mark hanging over India’s tour of Pakistan, saying that the series between the two countries is a very important one, especially for Pakistan. There have been reports that India might decide to cancel the tour because of security concerns.

    Akram said that Pakistan should keep their options open. “We cannot live in complete isolation,” he said. “If teams are forced to stay away from Pakistan because of security fears, then playing on offshore venues would be the only option and we will have to take it.”

  99. #99 by khansahab on November 16, 2008 - 7:00 PM

    Malik likely to retain captain for home series against India

    16 Nov 2008, 1947 hrs IST, PTI

    KARACHI: Shoaib Malik is all set to be retained as Pakistan captain for the home Test series against India early next year, according to sources.

    Sources in the team said the ODI series win against the West Indies has done a world of good among the players.

    The complaint against Malik has been that he has not treated the senior players with respect and is low on his communication skills with the other players as well.

    PCB chairman Ejaz Butt was, however, pleasantly surprised to see the change in relations between Malik and the players when he met the team members in Abu Dhabi.

    Sources in the Pakistan team said since Intikhab Alam and Aaqib Javed took over as coach and assistant coach they had spent a lot of time working with Malik on his communication skills and attitude towards his team-mates.

    “His attitude was one of the main reasons there was a growing demand to remove him as captain when the board sits down in December to appoint a new captain for the India series,” one source in the team said.

    “But now apparently things have changed because not only has Pakistan done extremely well to win the one-day series against West Indies in Abu Dhabi but also Malik’s attitude has changed for the better with the other players,” the source added.

    Senior batsman Mohammad Yousuf had accused Malik of disrespecting him before his joining the Indian Cricket League.

    At the first team meeting held by coach Intikhab and manager Yawar Saeed, senior players like Shahid Afridi and Shoaib Akhtar had talked about the need for the captain to improve his attitude.

  100. #100 by Awas on November 16, 2008 - 7:19 PM

    Khansahab, that’s a really disappointing statement by Wasim Akram.

    I really think most other ex-cricketers that really matter are voicing their concerns about Malik, so his days are numbered. Winning this series after a long time against an ordinary team is not going to change Malik’s mediocre performance overall and that two in a region where Pakistan generally has a good record.

    On a different matter, the most disappointing thing for me in the current PCB set up is that a very little representation has been given, to all important office bearers, from the minorities. I have never known a PCB that is so Punjab heavy in the past. That needs to change. The only good thing is that the team has still got a reasonably good mix of players from all regions.

  101. #101 by khansahab on November 16, 2008 - 7:37 PM

    Awas

    I think most people don’t have a problem with Malik being the captain as long as he is performing with both bat and ball. My problem with Malik is that he is not captaincy material, regardless of whether he performs or not. On merit he probably deserves a place in the T20 and ODI side.

    What Wasim Akram has said correctly is that Pakistan should accept neutral venues for cricket as a last resort. It sounds demeaning, but Pakistan’s situation is akin to, “Beggars cannot be choosers”. If they don’t play cricket, the biggest losers will the players themselves who will be short of any match practice.

    I don’t have a problem per se with office bearers being from Punjab. What I find odd though, which perhaps you have hinted in your comment, is after Nasim Ashraf’s pro-minority strategy and administration, we are now seeing almost no administrators from minorities. The interim Selection Committee features two out of three members from Karachi, however.

    It doesn’t matter who is from where as long as selection is based on merit with no emphasis on nepotism and cronyism. Khurram Manzoor was touted as a superb talent and he is from Karachi, yet he appeared quite mediocre to me overall. I believe the other Karachi opener, Khalid Latif, is probably worse. So it doesn’t really matter to me if the opening pair is of Nasir Jamshed and Salman Butt, who are probably the best openers in Pakistan at the moment.

  102. #102 by Awas on November 16, 2008 - 8:33 PM

    Khansahab

    About Malik, my point was the same, as we were talking about him as a captain not a player. He was pretty decent all rounder before he became a captain. He may still have a place in the team somewhere. It all depends on how he performs.

    Yes, merit is definitely paramount. Whether all 11 players come from a cave in Bajaur is irrelevant so long as they are the best in ability as well as mental strength in the country. That should be the criteria. This applies to team as well as PCB management. Surly, there are good officials elsewhere in the country from all corners (by the way, I didn’t know the other two selectors are from Karachi).

    Best openers would no doubt be Afridi and Imran Nazir as far as T20 and ODI’s are concerned. They can also be groomed and tried for tests too. Ghambir, Sehwag, Jayasuria, Gayle etc are the types who have succeeded in shorter as well as longer versions of the game.

  103. #103 by khansahab on November 17, 2008 - 11:35 AM

    India are Beatable – Younis Khan

    Pakistan’s 3-0 whitewash of West Indies in Abu Dhabi has primed them for the upcoming series against India, their captain Shoaib Malik has said. Younis Khan hit 101 and Rao Ifthikar Anjum took 4-59 in Pakistan’s 31-run win in the last game, a win which Malik praised as a solid team effort.

    “Before the start of this series, I had asked the players to play to potential and show commitment,” Malik said. “They have done that quite well and I am pleased they have given their best here.

    “In the second match, our total was small but we knew that they heavily depend on Chris Gayle. We planned to get Gayle out early and did it. We also did well in saving boundaries as planned. We have not played international cricket in a long time, but that hasn’t deterred us. This win is a big boost to our confidence ahead of the series against India.”

    Pakistan have been starved of international cricket this year with several teams refusing to tour the country due to security reasons. India are scheduled to play three Tests and five ODIs in Pakistan in January and February next year. There are doubts over the tour due to security worries, but Malik was hopeful of a tough series.

    “The way India are playing we would need to be at our best and do extra work to beat them,” Malik said.

    Younis, Man of the Match after his hundred, said India could be beaten. “This is pretty much the same team we played and beat last year. The only difference is they have an aggressive captain in [Mahendra Singh] Dhoni. But Dhoni has been very lucky as his changes and decisions have all paid off. His real test will come when luck deserts him.”

  104. #104 by khansahab on November 17, 2008 - 11:41 AM

    Is Yousuf greedy?

    Saad Shafqat

    The stark fact remains that the ICL is a banned outfit, and Yousuf was fully aware that signing up threatened depriving Pakistan of his services. By accepting the ICL offer, he showed everyone that he had placed greed above the country.
    Where do you begin to unravel the messy story of how Mohammad Yousuf has managed to tie himself up in knots?
    He’s a terrific batsman – most analysts place him among the top handful ever produced by Pakistan. He’s a stylist too – nothing less than a torchbearer for Asia’s wristy batting aesthetic that drives fans into rapture.
    There is also no doubt he has served his country well – with nearly 7,000 Test runs and over 9,000 ODI runs at extremely impressive averages (55.49 in Tests and 43.63 in ODIs), he sits near the top of any compilation of Pakistan’s batting figures.
    He is, in other words, a man of remarkable talents and gifts having a keen temperament that has proved itself in world-class competition.
    With talent comes responsibility – to yourself, your fans, your country and, most importantly, as a role model to young people. Yet Mohammad Yousuf’s unraveling personal saga shows that responsibility is something he has not quite mastered. Having put in all the hard work to build himself into a major cricketing asset, even a national treasure, for Pakistan, Yousuf is now embroiled in legal tangles, facing the possible extinction of his international career.
    By aligning himself with the ICL – a delicious but controversial T20 league that has not received official patronage – he appears to have shut off all avenues for a return to Test and ODI cricket.
    It was the princely sum of $1million that started it. This is the amount that the Indian Cricket League offered Yousuf through former Pakistan captain Moin Khan, who had become the manager of the Lahore Badshahs and was recruiting for them.
    Naturally, Yousuf was tempted. Who wouldn’t be? Around the world, leading contracted players from many national teams were made similar offers to join one of the ICL teams and add their stardust to the league. Yet while everyone else resisted, Yousuf caved in.
    He knew what he was getting into. The ICL was born out of a TV rights dispute between India’s Zee Corporation and the Indian cricket board. India’s official response was to declare the ICL an unacceptable ‘rebel’ league, and Indian players joining it faced a ban from all officially sanctioned Test and ODI cricket.
    This was enough for the ICC (cricket’s world governing body) and the other national cricket boards to follow suit. It was soon clear to all concerned that signing up with the ICL would amount to taking a bite of forbidden fruit – the temptation is hard to overcome but the consequences would be dire.
    The ICL did manage to sign up a number of prominent names – Inzamamul Haq, Craig MacMillan, Ian Harvey, Hasan Raza, Lance Klusener, Hemang Badani and others – but they are all either recently retired or out of favour with their own cricket boards for one reason or another.
    Mohammad Yousuf was the only major player already contracted to his national board who succumbed. The rest prudently weighed the hefty dollar amounts against risking their own future in international cricket, and gave the ICL a pass.
    It was the patently smarter thing to do, because everyone knew the BCCI’s ‘approved’ T20 league was emerging just around the corner. Within a short period, top-ranked players who had resisted the lure of the ICL had received even sweeter offers from the Indian Premier League and signed up in droves.
    Whether the ICL deserves to be banned by the world’s governing bodies is an important though separate question. If the interests of the game are to be served then it obviously doesn’t, because the freedom of players should not be curtailed by cricket board politics. There are some rumblings that the PCB is considering reversing the ban on ICL players. That will have its political fallout across the border, but for the cause of Pakistan cricket, it will be a welcome development.
    Still, the stark fact remains that the ICL is a banned outfit, and Yousuf was fully aware that signing up threatened to deprive Pakistan of his services. By accepting the ICL offer, he showed everyone that he had placed greed above the country – and so needlessly too, because he would have found the same if not better riches in the IPL, had he only been a little patient.
    In an ill-conceived move, the PCB tried to talk Yousuf out of his ICL contract with the promise of getting him a favourable deal from the IPL. The gesture was aimed at making Yousuf available for selection by Pakistan, but it backfired badly.
    The ICL sued and the PCB responded by compensating Yousuf for lost revenue and paying his legal fees. It proved futile and embarrassing, because arbitration upheld the ICL contract.
    The PCB lashed out by threatening to sue Moin Khan, who had recruited Yousuf on behalf of the ICL. It was a bumbling move. Moin after all was only doing his job, and the PCB ended up looking foolish.
    Yousuf meanwhile was growing increasingly nervous about his personal situation. An attempt to play county cricket in England was thwarted because he was denied a UK visa. Pakistan suffered a drought of international cricket, and even the one recent international outing, to Canada for a four-nation T20 tournament, proved frustrating for Yousuf due to visa difficulties.
    Last week, he finally relented and joined up with the Lahore Badshahs in the ICL. It’s been great for the Badshahs and for the fans who are once again enjoying the rarefied pleasure of Yousuf’s silken batting. But in a more obvious sense, Mohammad Yousuf is back where he started, accomplishing little and inviting ridicule in the process.

  105. #105 by Awas on November 17, 2008 - 2:02 PM

    One would expect that when people become overly religious, their whole perspective about life changes for the good. But is that so? Financial security is paramount for us all but greed for money should never become so overpowering that greed for greed sake should take priority and national interest should become secondary. Despite what religion teaches you to be more humble, content and not greedy and then when you see examples like MOYO going against what they espouse to be then it’s a shameful act and gives a bad name to religion. He was showered with lots of money and prizes when he became the highest run getter within a year and besides he earns a good keep playing for his country, so one would expect him to be more circumspect.

    The fact of the matter is that becoming overly religious may have some calming effects on you and may make you feel a better person but it can never change your nature or the type of person you are. MoYo already got the hump when he was not picked for the World T20 tournament which was a shameful act in itself. Many other players of his calibre like Dravid, Luxman and Co were not picked either but they were much more gracious about it. He has basically tainted his wonderful career by going back to sign for ICL once again. Above all he should have realised he is just a good test player.

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