ON PATH OF A LEGEND

YOUNUS KHAN IN THE MAKING OF A LEGEND

YOUNUS KHAN IN THE MAKING OF A LEGEND

YOUNUS KHAN is slowly but surely is in the making of a legend for Pakistan cricket team. He is on the right path of success and taken his captaincy challenge to prove a point that he is not a “dummy captain”, but a leader who leads from the front. Unlike Malik, the burden of captaincy did not affect his batting, in fact it played an opposite role on his psyche. He realized that in the absence of his former colleagues Inzamam and Mohammad Yousuf the middle order is not so dependable and he has to play the anchor role which he did to perfection.

DON'T WORRY MALAK, I AM ALWAYS BEHIND YOU

DON'T WORRY MALAK, I AM ALWAYS BEHIND YOU

Having said that it does not mean the other batsmen should continue to play the role of a second fiddle and always look up to Younus Khan as a father figure to rescue them in the times of trouble. Players like Shoaib Malik and Misbah with ample experience should pull up their socks and get ready for a big score in Lahore. Malik should not consider himself as a “fifty-sixty” player. His test performance is poor but his 11 years of experience at the international level is enough to handle any kinda pressure under any given circumstances. Misbah too, must strive to prove his worth, just a solo century in test cricket is not something one would expect from him to cherish for the rest of his life. Kamran Akmal the fourth most experienced batsman and the so-called wicketkeeper must understand that a big hundred on a dead wicket may assure his place for another few matches, but not forever. He needs to do something with his butterfingers. They may have proved to be good and handy while he was dealing with the former skipper or while he is was spreading butter on Ijaz’s Butt and, not when he is keeping the wickets.

Like a bug in the bed, this Khatmal is here to stay in the team

LIKE A BEDBUG, THE KHATMAL WILL STAY IN THE TEAM

Doing analysis of a 5 day test match is always a difficult task, as one needs to rely too much on his memory or, jot down the notes. But, the postmortem of a dead test match is easy, one doesn’t need to delve deeper into the finer details of what went wrong and how those mistakes could have been rectified? The answer is simple, no more dead wickets. As Waqar Younus says, ” you need a grass on the wicket” and thats all.

At the end of the second day’s play when Sri Lanka posted a huge total of 644/7 declared, I said: “if Pakistan plays sensibly they can avoid defeat, if they play this match like a 50 over game or in twenty20 style they will end up scoring 250 odd runs.” Thanks God, Younus Khan played the anchor role just like Jayawardene the Sri Lankan captain did and partnerships evolved around his 313. Its a shame that he got out so cheaply on the 5th day after adding only 7 runs to his overnight total, because all Pakistanis were hoping to see him breaking, Inzamam and Hanif Mohammad’s record if not of Lara’s.

IF YOU ARE PERSISTENT, YOU ARE ALWAYS REWARDED

IF YOU ARE PERSISTENT, YOU ARE ALWAYS REWARDED

There is nothing much to write home about on this test match and now all focus is on Lahore. As expected the same squad has been retained but, the sources indicate that Sohail Khan will be replaced by Talha! Once again its a shame for the rookie fast bowler Sohail Khan if he is excluded in the second test. Because, it wasn’t his fault bowling a dead wicket, besides two catches of his bowling were dropped one by Malik and the other by Misbah. Getting wickets on a dead pitch is a rarity.

Among the batsmen I think Khurram Manzoor will go. I would like to see Fawad Alam in the team instead of the new batsman who scored a century in the two days warm up game against Sri Lanka. That kid is too young to be included in a crucial match because, Pakistan needs to win this match i.e., if they really want to prove a point to the rest of the world that staying away from the test arena for 14 months has not dampened their spirits. They fought bravely in the first test and were not intimidated by the huge total of 644 runs and neither by the deadly spin attack of Murali & Mendis. In fact they lofted them for sixes and fours.

If there is “a grass” on the Lahore pitch then Umar Gul & Co., should be able to extract some pace, bounce and swing but Vaas and Dilhara are also known to produce the same and Vaas especially is more experienced than Gul. So, the chances of winning for both sides are equal but, I still think Sri Lankan’s have an edge over Pakistan’s batting especially in players like, Jayawardene and Sangakara, both are capable of turning the tables and bring Sri Lanka on top. The chances of a draw in Lahore are very remote unless it rains or, the hooligans of Nawaz and Shahbaaz Sharif continue to march on the streets and burn tires or, damage properties to create chaos in the country and the teams decide to stay away from the trouble, then God bless Pakistan.

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  1. #1 by Moin Taj on February 25, 2009 - 7:18 PM

    Nice thread guys and what’s Yunus Khan doing behind Malik? Malik seems to be in a lot of pain and agony or is he suffering from loneliness syndrome and Khan is giving him some consolation? LOL at Waqar Yunus’s comments on grass. Good work keep it up.

  2. #2 by Abdul on February 25, 2009 - 8:08 PM

    Interesting composed thread Mr Javed A Khan with good depth analysis and amusing phrases! Yes so near but yet so far is this scenario on the record we were all anxiously waiting upon overnight. Not trying to be biased from a Pakistani point of view but in the circumstances the meaning and significance of this Younis ‘s knock is by far a better innings than Lara’s 400. I mean he had big and small “M” to negotiate with for 2 days and remained a solid force throughout and always looked so comfortable and mindful in his approach. He promises to be a great leader and top batsmen by that I mean he has the credentials to be the greatest In Pakistan’s exciting history.

    Yes I also am hoping for a lively track which favours a result and can produce a fair contest between bat and ball. I feel it’s too early to make judgments on Sohail Khan but would like to see Talha given an opportunity to show his promise. Kaneria is Pakistan’s best bowler but picked up 5-200 of around 50 over’s in the match. He was the highest wicket taker in the match but as times was looking off colour and ineffective. He will be a key asset if Pakistan wants to win in Lahore which I back them to. But we all know the mysterious world of Pakistan cricket can be a funny game so let’s not expect anything as of yet!

  3. #3 by khansahab on February 25, 2009 - 8:55 PM

    Very good thread.

    I think this 313 by Younis in the context of just being awarded captaincy, chasing 650 odd, facing Murali and Mendis and playing without Yousuf or Inzamam, is more significant than Hanif’s 337 or Inzamam’s 329. In fact it is probably the best Test knock I have witnessed from a Pakistani in my lifetime.

    Younis is surely on his way to becoming a legend for Pakistan cricket. People have already started drawing comparisons with Inzamam and Yousuf. I’ve often placed Inzamam on a higher pedestal than Yousuf simply because Inzamam used to fight for every run, and he has helped Pakistan from the jaws of defeat in the most difficult situations. I can’t remember Yousuf playing a good knock under pressure. In terms of skill- timing, placement, exquisiteness of strokes, Yousuf is above Inzi and Younis, but in terms of being a fighter, I don’t think Yousuf is that great a batsman. A bit like Tendulkar perhaps, a victim of his own success where runs come too easily to him and he does not appear to fight for them.

    A few good knocks like this and Younis will be considered to be better than Inzi, which will leave him with only Hanif, Miandad and Zaheer Abbas for comparison.

    I am slightly disappointed with Misbah. In my opinion barring T20 cricket, Misbah has not done anything heroic in ODI’s or Tests. True, he has played a few Tests only, but he was in the team to replace Yousuf, and considering that his performance has been average. In this Test he played the slowest out of all the batsmen and he needs to score over 50 more often. What Pakistan needs at the moment is a truly consistent player and someone whose average is in the late 40’s or 50’s to support Younis.

    Even though I agree the pitch should be a little more supportive for the bowlers, I think as a captain Younis should rely more on what his players can offer to the team. Having a dead pitch can take away the charm from the game, but at the same time blaming factors other than your own ability can also affect performance. Good players are those who do special things even when the tide is against them. Inzamam did that on many occasions, Younis did that in this match, Fawad Alam has done that many times in domestic cricket, Wasim and Waqar did that and now Sohail Khan, Gul and Kaneria must do that, too.

    In terms of team selection, I would like Afridi or Fawad Alam to replace Faisal Iqbal and Nasir Jamshed to replace Manzoor. This is not because I think Manzoor is useless, but because I think Jamshed should be given a chance. Regardless of Manzoor’s scores or strike rate, the best thing about his batting and what Pakistan desperately needs in Test cricket, is that he has been able to survive more than 50 balls consistently. That is a rare feat in Pakistan cricket for an opener.

    In terms of bowling, I think Talha should replace S Khan and a quick bowler should perhaps replace Yasir Arafat. Kaneria was actually more effective than both Murali and Mendis, so I don’t see why he should be replaced. It is a huge accomplishment to out perform both Murali and Mendis.

    Sohail Khan has a lot of talent but Waqar Younis was right that he needs to work more on his run up and bowling action if he is to survive in cricket. I have supported S Khan for a long time but I know because of the fact that he falls over after dispatching his delivery, it will affect everything that a bowler needs- swing, pace, control, bounce etc. In particular he will have difficulty generating bounce because of his release and arm action. He needs to work on that, otherwise he can bowl at a good pace and he can reverse swing the ball.

  4. #4 by khansahab on February 25, 2009 - 9:12 PM

    5 players have been put on hold and they are Rauf, Afridi, Tanvir, Ajmal and Nasir Jamshed.

    Tanvir has been picking up wickets so he might get the nod ahead of Arafat, whereas I think Younis should take a gamble and use Afridi instead of Faisal Iqbal. The reason being that Faisal is not that great a player and secondly Afridi will provide some excitement with the bowling.

    In Test cricket legspinners should be used more often than offspinners because legspinners attack. Kaneria and Afridi are both attacking bowlers. Ajmal is not a great turner of the ball and that should be enough to keep him away from the team, yet I don’t understand why his name is being mentioned in Test cricket? They can’t afford to drop Malik and play a specialist off spinner, so why even put Ajmal in the reserves?

    Afridi and Kaneria both bowling along with Malik can ensure Malik’s defensive, innocuous off spin can provide some support to the attacking legspin of Kaneria and Afridi. That is a good spin attack.

    I think this should be the team:

    Butt
    Jamshed
    Malik
    Younis
    Misbah
    Afridi
    Akmal
    Tanvir
    Kaneria
    Gul
    Talha

  5. #5 by khansahab on February 25, 2009 - 11:48 PM

    Omer

    I agree with you on most matters except where you said Yousuf was a match winner. If the issue is of consolidation then there have been no bigger consolidators than Dravid and Tendulkar, yet they are not considered match winners like Dhoni. In the late 1990s Tendulkar was hitting a 50 in every 2nd or 3rd match, but he was not winning matches.

    About Inzamam’s captaincy, I have always said he was a very bad captain because he nurtured Mullahgiri in the team and because he was laid back. Bob Woolmer spoke about it, although he tried to be subtle in his criticism and Pervez Mir, the media manager, also spoke about the negative influence on the team. In particular they said things like, between breaks if Woolmer wanted to discuss strategy he was not able to because most players would be praying in Jamat.

    In Pakistan people have a sympathetic attitude towards Mullahgiri, hence this does not get spoken about that much, but a major reason why Yousuf was not made captain despite seniority and performance, was because of his Mullahgiri. Hence they made Malik captain because Afridi’s performance was unsatisfactory at that time.

    People used to say that we need Mullahgiri in the team because the players were not united under Malik. The reason why they were not united is not because of lack of Mullahgiri (some players like Afridi and Younis are still pretty religious) but because Malik did not command respect of the players.

    Regarding team selection, I think Nasir Jamshed is more likely to get a chance than Shahzad because Jamshed has played some international cricket and impressed. Fawad Alam will not be chosen because Afridi and Faisal Iqbal will be preferred over him. There’s absolutely no way Akmal is being replaced soon.

    I agree with you over Akmal, he will keep dropping catches. Today Waqar said that whenever Akmal’s position is threatened he responds with a good knock, however, that is the very reason why he has not been able to rectify his technique. It’s like his selection is always guaranteed no matter however many catches he drops. Sometimes you have to let players take an ego beating, you have to rest them so that they can regain their focus and commitment. Until they rest Akmal for a few months, he will not be able to improve his keeping. They are also destroying Sarfraz Ahmed’s career along the way. Fine, Ahmed’s batting was not good but he has performed consistently for about a year now with the bat, in domestic cricket. He has worked very hard on his batting and he really deserves a run.

  6. #6 by khansahab on February 26, 2009 - 12:19 AM

    Omer

    I was not aware that “matchwinner” and “finisher” are separate and distinct terms. Inzamam was known as a matchwinner and finisher both. Similarly Dhoni is also known as a match winner and finisher both.

    As far as I know a finisher is a matchwinner, because he has finished a match (presumably victoriously) for you, however a matchwinner may or may not be a finisher. So this argument does not make much sense to me, unless I am getting confused unnecessarily.

    I remember Yousuf being a consistent batsman, but I don’t remember him finishing matches. If he batted at no 4, it doesn’t mean there is a bar to him remaining there till the end and finishing matches. Practically there is hardly any difference between someone who comes at no 4 and someone who comes at no 5, especially with a team like Pakistan where the batting is inconsistent and prone to collapsing like a deck of cards. Kallis is often criticised for not being a finisher and/or match winner, but he bats at no 4 usually. In terms of consolidation, he is one of the most prominent consolidators in world cricket.

    Anyhow, to make myself clearer, let me just say that I consider Inzamam to be a “bigger” matchwinner than Yousuf. If I had the choice of going with one of them, I would choose Inzamam any day of the week.

  7. #7 by khansahab on February 26, 2009 - 12:32 AM

    Omer

    It’s past midnight here and cut me some slack 😉

  8. #8 by khansahab on February 26, 2009 - 12:42 PM

    Political scenario puts Lahore Test in jeopardy

    Karachi: The Pakistan supreme court’s decision to bar former prime minister Nawaz Sharif from contesting elections and declaring the younger Sharif’s reign as Punjab chief minister “null and void” could throw a spanner in hosting the second Test against Sri Lanka in Lahore.

    Nawaz and sibling Shahbaz hold considerable power in Lahore and the Pakistan Cricket Board are wary of the developments that could cause huge upheaval in the country’s volatile political scenario.

    Speculation was rife on whether it would be prudent to hold the second Test between Pakistan and Sri Lanka in Lahore from March 1 in the aftermath of the Supreme Court ruling.

    “It is something the Board has to look at. See how the conditions remain in Lahore because people are expecting a strong public reaction after the disqualification of the Sharif brothers since Lahore has always been their stronghold,” one source said.

    He pointed out there was still some time to go for the second Test but if situation starts getting out of hand then the board would have to think about an alternate venue which could only be Karachi, which is already hosting the first Test.

  9. #9 by khansahab on February 26, 2009 - 1:16 PM

    “I see Imran’s talent in Younis’

    KARACHI: Former cricket great Hanif Mohammad congratulated Younis Khan and compared him with Pakistan cricket history’s most successful captain Imran Khan. “I see Imran’s quality in the new captain,” said the former Pakistani captain. “It was a great achievement to score 313 runs.” “I came early today to see Inzamam and my records and then Brian Lara’s 400 record shatter. However, it was disappointing to see Younis getting out before doing it,” he added. Hanif Mohammad is Pakistan’s highest run getter in Tests with 337 runs followed by Inzamam with 229 runs. He further said Younis would prove himself as a successful captain.

  10. #10 by khansahab on February 26, 2009 - 1:30 PM

    If the chaotic situation in Punjab prevents the 2nd Test from taking place, then cricket fans will be very upset. If PML N creates hurdles hopefully the match can be held at Karachi.

    Politics should never be mixed with cricket.

  11. #11 by JAVED A. KHAN on February 26, 2009 - 4:05 PM

    khansahab

    The last paragraph of the thread has raised doubts over the possibility of the 2nd test match to be played in Lahore and I don’t think the match could be held again in Karachi on the dead wicket.

    These days most of the wickets are being prepared for the shorter version of the game and that allows batsmen to score more runs and that is what the people want. The previous few tests in Pakistan have produced such runs, remember that Faisalabad test where the Indian openers scored a record 400 runs partnership? Why always blame the curators for this when the PCB itself is directly responsible for it.

  12. #12 by JAVED A. KHAN on February 26, 2009 - 4:34 PM

    Yes Politics should never be mixed with cricket, therefore the PCB must go ahead with the 2nd test at Lahore as per schedule. If anything happens like hooligans prevent the match from happening then the people of Pakistan will know how mean and Badmash these Sharif Brothers are.

    When Musharraf was in power after the Supreme Court’s ruling against him, it was Nawaz Sharif who was campaigning against him and was asking him to respect the Supreme Court’s decision. So, what went wrong now? Why is he challenging the Supreme Court’s decision which is against his brother’s Ghunda Gardi and Dahshat Gardi? He must accept it with a spoon full of sugar.

  13. #13 by Abdul on February 26, 2009 - 5:37 PM

    LS have u seen the hectic but exciting schedule in store for this year. I mean we have so many big events on the menu from IPL/T20 WC AND ASHES. I also like the fact that Pakistan will be touring Australia. I very much like the timings for that occurrence as it’s all during the Christmas break so that should be a period of time which will catch a lot of attention within various Pakistani communities around the globe. Plus watching cricket through the night is always a treat!

    Of course we have 4 main series being played currently but very soon the glitz and glamour of the lengthy IPL will commence. Following that the t20 drama follows immediately and than the ashes. Obviously Pakistan aren’t participating in the IPL but they should put priorities with country and even apply themselves constructively by setting various camps in preparation for that anticipated event in England. This is a golden opportunity for the country to excel and utilise this precious time and following their absence from IPL and regarding that the ICL players are by than permitted to play I fondly rate Pakistan’s chances of glory. From a Pakistani point of view I feel the T20 event will be the most significant in the grand calendar because:

    a) It’s a synthetic format for their players in which they are naturally gifted
    b) Always global events catch attention in Pakistani communities and the passion is by far admirable. Especially with the event being held in the UK and Pakistan featuring in England’s group which is bound to cause some banter.

    But with such a tight schedule in store one can question if players burnouts come into play. Also I feel this is poor planning for the administrators which will make proceedings less competitive and worthy from both a players and supporters point of view. To conclude my ashes prediction is with England due to Australia’s long lost dominance in the international arena.

    Anyway talking of the event yesterday when Pakistan had an outside chance of clinching a formidable victory. Someone like Warne/mushy/saqlain will be able to dominate and pull of something outstanding because that’s what makes a champion unit and a champion bowler in which they can turn the tables bring victory out of the gloom. However sorely Kaneria hasn’t got the magic or temperament to fulfil those heavy boots. Has he?

    Not to boast or compare myself to the scale of Kaneria but once in a T20 fixture were the opposition required 20 runs with 9 wickets in hand I remained positive in my game plan and picked up a 3 wicket maiden and managed to exploit my variations to perfection and claimed a total of 4 in the match . We claimed a 2 run victory from the jaws of defeat. In that week I was also featured in the local newspaper as a result. It was a quarter final encounter so u can imagine how meaningful it was for me and the team as a whole.

    Performances like these are the differences between a “mediocre bowler” and an “outstanding bowler” such as Shane Warne or Mushtaq Ahmed who could pull of scenarios like the one above. But u can’t just rely on your physical attributes as your mental strength and self determination has to be there to succeed. Mushy is a prime example because u can always see his eagerness and desire to perform through his body language, cunning facial expression and attacking approach to the crease which provided him with a firm platform to weave his magic. Also for a fact he never seems to be satisfied until he got 5 + wickets which openly explains his self motivation to pull of something remarkable. Shane Warne as well always used to raise the morale within the team as left cricket with an inspiring legacy that you’re never out of the game till the fat lady sings.

    This underlines the dominant effect spinners can have. But Kaneria has to be able to learn that the art leg spin revolves much more outside than just his wrist action. Is he yet to prove us wrong that he can be a mysterious dominant matchwinner who can pull of something remarkable? Well for a start 3-170 isn’t! Kaneria may have 200 odd wickets to his name at test level but what matters inside is how many times have we had something to write home about in which Danish has been able to win matches and turn the tables like Murali or Warne because many of the wickets Kaneria captures are in meaningless scenarios.

  14. #14 by khansahab on February 26, 2009 - 6:15 PM

    Abdul

    Why don’t you tell us more about yourself? Like what is your full name, so we can look you up on the internet? If you have featured in the local newspaper I am sure you must be on the internet somewhere.

    We are honoured to have a bright, young spinner on this blog who is going to make a name for himself in spin, Inshallah.

    Kind regards

  15. #15 by khansahab on February 26, 2009 - 6:39 PM

    Shoaib Malik vows to give best for Pakistan

    Deposed Captain Shoaib Malik vowed on Thursday that he will continue his committed role in the interest of the Pakistan team. “Pakistan is above all for me and I will give my best as batsman, bowler and fielder for the country,” he told APP in an interview prior to his departure for Lahore where the second cricket test against Sri Lanka starts from March 1.
    “I am absolutely delighted with the outcome of the test match in Karachi. He applauded and praised the historic performance by Younis Khan,” he maintained.
    “Definitely it was one of the finest innings I have seen which came under pressure. Younis deserved all the credit for his extra-ordinary batting display.
    31-year-old Younis Khan is only the third Pakistani and 20th batsmen in test history to have scored a triple century.
    “It was an example and it inspired the whole team to do well,” he added. “I am comfortable with Younis and fully behind him for the success of the team,” he added.
    “Its not easy to build a record total of 765-7 in reply to 644-7 by the Sri Lankan,” he said. “Whole team is proud of their achievements,” he said.
    “I am prepared to bat at any number in the interest of the team.
    I got a lot of flexibility for the team,” he said.
    “A lot of cricket is left in me and I will continue my supporting role for the team,” 26-year-old Shoaib Malik said.

  16. #16 by Abdul on February 26, 2009 - 8:31 PM

    Yeah Khansahab I’ve taken many wickets and been very successful at club and county level. My performances and records are on many sites on the internet and I even have my own profile on cricinfo. If I become famous and enter county cricket officially than I will perhaps reveal my name to u but like u for now am reluctant to reveal my identity on this platform.

    Plus did u have DRC’s phone number! Is this because u are graduating in the same field and chat law or if not u perhaps do via email.

    By the way do u still visit PAK spin? The most activity I ever saw is during big tournaments such as ICC trophy and t20 world cup 07 when Kamran bhai was writing some excellent articles and regularly posting threads on both on and off the field events. Other than that there doesn’t seem to be much to write about on there currently as there isn’t much to discuss and in a way u could consider the passion of the blog to be lost as opposed to a year ago.

    Finally to conclude I hope u find no such grammar mistakes in my comments now that I’ve started writing on Microsoft word before publishing on LS. I only used to this before for some comments but now I’m doing for each and every post.

    Kind regards

  17. #17 by khansahab on February 26, 2009 - 8:54 PM

    Abdul

    Fair enough, it’s just that you are the spin whizkid here and not me. I’ve done nothing great so as to arouse the curiosity of others as to what my name might be, but you have. Hence I was asking for your name. I think you should also reveal when you will be 17, as some people consider you as a kid and they might take you more seriously if they know you have aged.

    Abdul you should not have given me the hint that your profile is on Cricinfo, because I have done some research and discovered you. This is your profile:

    http://content-uk.cricinfo.com/pakistan/content/player/42623.html

    You are from Lahore, you bowl spin and you like to stamp your authority, and your face is telling me everything about you on this profile.

    Abdul, feel free to refrain from Microsoft Word; we feel bad making you rely on some source to make your English appear acceptable.

    Abdul, before I give you DRC’s number I will have to take her permission. Since you are younger than her, I don’t think she will be willing to befriend you, but I am sure a nice person like her will not mind giving you career advice? You won’t, will you, DRC?

    And finally Abdul,

    Kind regards

  18. #18 by Abdul on February 26, 2009 - 9:17 PM

    Why acceptable? On paper I haven’t been too far of getting “A” at GCSE which many people don’t achieve so consider it average if not good.

    I will post a peice of my coursework here tomorrow and see for yourself of my English credibilities if doubtful.

    LOL@salim Malik but u will never get my profile until I reveal, hence if I reveal. U have made a valid point that I should be proud of revealing but that’s me and there u go.

    By the way I would prefer her email address than telephone number ! But tell her it’s about English literature assistance to help with my examinations and nothing romantic what so ever although romance is associated with literature. Because if not aware this intelligent graduate got an “A*” in the subject. Just a few lines or clever phrases could go along way in helping me achieve my ambitions.

    This time let me end it differently…

    Yours sincerely

  19. #19 by khansahab on February 26, 2009 - 9:27 PM

    Abdul

    I am understand your views. Actually I am never say your English be bad. Am I say?

    I am afraid DRC am not want to give you phone number or e-mail address. I am sorry.

    Kind regards

  20. #20 by khansahab on February 26, 2009 - 9:33 PM

    Abdul

    Well if you can’t reveal your name and age, then we can never take you seriously. How do we know if you are one of us and we can trust you?

    Why are you so secretive and paranoid? Give us a chance to respect you.

  21. #21 by Awas on February 26, 2009 - 10:42 PM

    Mian Abdul Sahib

    The reason I haven’t commented here lately is that despite many requests to see a great spinner in action, you refuse your revelation. As you know, I love the art of legspin. You have made an admirer very upset. I even suggested once you email me with some details in strict confidence but you disappoint me 😦

  22. #22 by khansahab on February 26, 2009 - 10:48 PM

    YYESSS!

    Awas is back! Hurray!

    Glad to see you back sir!

  23. #23 by M. Y.. Kasim on February 27, 2009 - 12:39 AM

    I have always supported that Pakistan should go with an attacking team irrespective of the result that we might lose the match.

    Instead of 30/40 runs batsmen like Faisal Iqbal and Misbah (who, apparantly, is out of touch) and medium-pacers like Yasir Ararfat since he too can contribute 30/40 runs, we should go out and out agressive bunch of proven talents.

    To partner Salman Butt, Nasir Jamshed should be selected, Ahmed Shehzad be sent in as one-down followed by Younus Khan, Shoaib Malik, Fawad Alam, Kamran Akmal (as somebody said that his 158 ensured another 20 Tests for him no matter how many cathes he droppes!!) Sohail Tanvir (I hope he learned his lesson) Umer Gul, Danish Kaneria and Mohammad Talha.

    I wish I could include few of the players in place of the above but they are not in the list of Selectors.

    I would particularly have seen:

    Sarafarz Ahamed in place of Kamran Akmal.

    Mohammad Aamer in place of Sohail Tanvir

    Umer Amin in place of Nasir Jamshed.

    It is my personal opinion and I feel srongly about it that if we dont give our rising talents a chance when it is ripe, then it will peter out and I know from experience that 80% of the lads have come good.

    Players like Brett Lee, Dale Syen, Ishant Sharma, Hashim Amala, Rahul Dravid Sachin Tendulkar etc etc were picked up when they were still unheard of but their talents were visible.

    But our Pindoos will not give them a chnace unless they are “Bhanjas aur Bhatijas” of the Chowdhrys, Beaurocrats, Big Brass or influential politicians.

  24. #24 by JAVED A. KHAN on February 27, 2009 - 2:36 AM

    YO Maan, Awas is back. Good to see you on the blog. How was your vacation? Glad to see you are outta the city b4 it gets messy.

    Abdul’s full name is Abdul ka Bul Bul………. now lets see how he responds? 😀

    Abdul ab tou bata da asli naam aur asli umar!

  25. #25 by JAVED A. KHAN on February 27, 2009 - 2:39 AM

    Kasim Sahab you are absolutely right about B & B’s of Chow and Beau and PO. 😀

    You are also right about the 30/40 players like I wrote about Malik as a fifty/sixty player in the test cricket.

  26. #26 by JAVED A. KHAN on February 27, 2009 - 7:54 AM

    Indian batting in the second T20 was below par. Sehwag was hitting aimlessly from the word go and was obvious that he would be out any moment and he didn’t last long. Gambhir was shaky from the first ball and was out cheaply. Kal ka hero aaj ka zero, Raina. Yuvraj was riding on his luck, a dropped catch at the boundary got him a six, a sure run out – he was stranded halfway on the pitch – and made a quick 50 but Dhoni was playing like a test match. Irfan Pathan hit a six on the last ball of the innings to take India to 149 But, it was Irfan Pathan who was on th receiving end, and was hit for a six on the first ball of the innings. What a coincidence? The reason Irfan Pathan is opening the bowling for India ahead of Zaheer Khan and Ishant Sharma is because the ball is swinging.

    Abdul

    Like everyone else you are more than welcome to comment on this blog. But, this is not the first time you have done this. Writing your own personal emails or, demanding personal email addresses of others, your personal website address on the blog and pestering moderators to give you personal telephone numbers of other bloggers and then, out of frustration using abusive words is not acceptable here. If you continue to behave like this, your comments won’t appear on this blog, you get my drift?

  27. #27 by JAVED A. KHAN on February 27, 2009 - 9:25 AM

    The match went down to the wire and NZ had won it on the last ball. Good match.

    The talk about beating the T20 World Champion needs to be readdressed because, these days, in fact even before the T20 World Cup, most teams were just at par to each other and India being lucky had won the championship in a very close finished final. Even the earlier round match against Pakistan ended in a tie and then was settled in a farcical manner. So, there is no one team who is clearly head and shoulders above the other, as it was for Australia in the test arena and even in ODI.

    Today, NZ has the most attacking batsmen in the world for T20 format. They have at least 5-6 players who are constantly scoring 25 – 35 runs in 15 to 20 balls and that makes the difference. Although India is good on paper, but lacking in consistency.

    Varun

    We need to discuss this separately because its a very interesting subject. My prediction was NZ will win T20 by beating India 2-0 and they did. As regards ODI, it would be difficult for NZ to beat India even 3-2. In fact it will be the other way round India will win 3-2 and in test India is definitely better than NZ.

  28. #28 by khansahab on February 27, 2009 - 11:08 AM

    Protests turn violent in Pakistan

    Thousands of protesters rallied across Pakistan on Thursday (February 26), setting cars ablaze and torching images of PPP leaders after Supreme Court barred Sharif brothers from office.

    Mobs clashed with police and closed the main highway in Islamabad, in the biggest protests against the government since it took office.

    Police fired tear-gas as nearly 1,000 people tried to block the highway between Islamabad and Rawalpindi.

    The protesters clashed with police, shouted slogans against the government and torched several cars and a police van, after the government put paramilitaries on alert and police detained 30 Punjab MPAs.

    In Lahore, thousands of people stormed the barricades for a sit-in outside the Governor House, punching their fists in the air, witnesses said.

    A crowd of over 5,000 protesters beat pictures of PPP leaders with sticks, then set them ablaze.

    Hundreds rallied in Faisalabad, Rawalpindi and Muzaffarabad. Protests were also held in Karachi, Peshawar, Quetta and other districts.

    In Islamabad, the leaders and workers of PML-N and members of civil society continued holding protest demonstrations and rallies even on second day of Supreme Court verdict against Sharif brothers while traders community observed complete shutter down strike across the city on Thursday.

    Police officials informed The Nation that fearing the mounting heat of demonstrations, the authorities had called four companies of Rangers and five Platoons of Punjab Constabulary (PC) to avoid any crunch moment.

    In this regard, the whole city has been divided into various zones while Superintendents of Police (SPs) have been deputed to supervise the situation and maintain law and order in the city.

    The enraged protesters pelted stones at Lal Haveli, the residence of Awami Muslim League President Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed and on the office of Rescue 1122 at Chandni Chowk damaging several vehicles.

  29. #29 by khansahab on February 27, 2009 - 11:32 AM

    Senior PML N leader Hanif Abbasi has been mentioned below. He has always been a strong opponent of Pervez Musharraf and he is a self proclaimed hater of MQM and Karachiites. Apparently cases have been registered against him for violence and vandalism in Pindi following the Supreme Court’s verdict:

    Strong protests paralyse life in twin cities

    Life remained paralysed throughout the day in twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad on Thursday as workers of the PML-N registered a strong protest against the disqualification of their top leaders by holding rallies and blocking main roads.

    Most academic institutions in Rawalpindi and Islamabad had announced holiday while attendance in offices remained thin.

    Traffic remained suspended on Murree Road in Rawalpindi due to skirmishes between police and PML-N activists throughout the day. A complete shutter down strike was observed in all major shopping centres of the city.

    The angry mobs of protesters confronted with police at various points on Murree Road. They attacked ‘Rescue-15’ office in Liaquat Bagh damaging its building and a number of vehicles parked there. The angry PML-N activists also did not spare Lal Haveli. However it was not confirmed whether Sheikh Rashid Ahmed was present inside the building. No one was injured in the attack.

    The drama of hide and seek between police and PML-N activists was witnessed till night as police fired teargas shells on small groups of protesters, which continued emerging from narrow streets pelting stones on law-enforcers.

    A group of PML-N activists clashed with workers of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) at the memorial of Benazir Bhutto at the main gate of Liaquat Bagh pelting stones on each other.

    The movement of traffic between twin cities remained suspended via Faizabad as unrest on the Islamabad Highway and Murree Road at this junction of twin cities prevailed till the evening.

    The disturbance on Islamabad Highway between Zero Point and Faizabad started in the morning when students of colleges belonging to students’ wing of the PML-N blocked the road and started pelting stones on passing vehicles, which forced police to divert traffic to other routes. Protesters torched six vehicles on Islamabad Highway near Kurri Road.

    The clashes between PML-N activists and police near Faizabad continued till late evening as protesters burnt tyres and pelted stones while police responded with baton-charge and teargas shelling. The angry protesters also damaged a number of vehicles and removed signboards.

    The local parliamentarians, including Hanif Abbasi and Haji Pervaiz Khan from Rawalpindi and Dr. Tariq Fazal and Anjum Aqeel Khan from Islamabad led protest rallies. In Rawalpindi, rallies were taken out from Bohar Bazaar, which on reaching Committee Chowk, converted into a public meeting. Addressing protesters, MNA Hanif Abbasi alleged that President Asif Ali Zardari was behind the disqualification verdict given against Sharif brothers. “We will not allow one-man show in the form of Zardari in the country,” he said.

    Abbasi said that Shahbaz Sharif was disqualified only to dislodge PML-N from Punjab province. “After failing in all other attempts, President Zardari resorted to this extreme action through PCO judges,” he said.

    Haji Pervaiz Khan said that Rawalpindi is the hub of PML-N, saying that workers would continue to lodge their strong protest against disqualification of their top leaders.

    Addressing a public rally at Aabpara Chowk, MNAs Dr. Tariq Fazal, Anjum Aqeel Khan and Senator Zafar Ali Shah said that the PML-N would continue its struggle for independence of judiciary. “Our leadership is being punished for struggling for the restoration of sacked judges,” they said.

    Meanwhile, PML-N spokesman Asim Khan Niazi condemned burning of portraits of Benazir Bhutto, saying that it was not act of any party worker. “We have great respect for Benazir Bhutto and our workers cannot think about such an act,” he said. He said that it was the handiwork of some miscreants who wanted chaos in the country by creating confrontation between workers of two major political parties. He also denied that PML-N activists forced traders to close down their shops.

    Khalid Iqbal adds: Hundreds of PML-N activists entered the Lal Haveli and broke its windows and doors. They also tore off posters of Sheikh Rashid Ahmed. Police and activists thrashed each other on the occasion. Police and Lal Haveli guards resorted to aerial firing and teargas to disperse the protesters.

    Protest rallies were taken out from different parts of the city, including Committee Chowk, Raja Bazaar, Dhoke Ratta, Dhoke Syedan, Dhamial, Lalkurti, Chuhr, Jhanda Chichi, Sadiqabad, Pirwadhai, Banni, Bagh Sardaran, Jhelum Road, Bohr Bazaar, Rehmanabad, Sarafa Bazaar, Commercial Market, Gharibabad and Faizabad.

    The PML-N supporters resorted to aerial firing in different localities, including Kamalabad, Dhamial, Garibabad, Jhanda Chichi and Chauntra over the Supreme Court verdict. The activists also pelted stones damaging windowpanes of several buildings. A few vehicles were also damaged.

  30. #30 by khansahab on February 27, 2009 - 11:40 AM

    When the quota system was rife in Karachi and there was open discrimination against Urdu Speakers in terms of employment opportunities and college/university seats, protests in the city were remarkably similar to what is now happening in Lahore, Pindi, Faislabad and other cities in Punjab.

    The police and Rangers were involved, there was teargas, baton-charging, arrests and MQM leaders were charged.

    However at that time the protestors were called terrorists, scum, traitors etc etc. My question is, should we not be calling PML N people the same? What different are they doing? They are also doing it because they feel their ethnicity has been attacked and discriminated against.

    Or does a different rule apply to them because they are in 60% majority? Being in a minority means the meaning of “human rights” and “discrimination” changes?

    It is time Pakistanis should wake up and save Pakistan.

  31. #31 by khansahab on February 27, 2009 - 1:11 PM

    Australia, Pakistan to play five ODIs in UAE

    Australia will play five ODIs and a Twenty20 against Pakistan in the UAE between April 22 and May 7. The first two ODIs will be played in Dubai and the rest in Abu Dhabi, with the teams returning to Dubai for the Twenty20 game, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) said on Friday.

    The Australians, currently in South Africa, will fly directly Dubai after the fifth ODI of the tour, in Johannesburg on April 17, Ijaz Butt, the PCB chairman said.

    Australia had cancelled their tour of Pakistan in the wake of the heightened violence in March 2008, and were expected to visit the country separately for the ODI and Test series this year. Venues in England, Malaysia, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah and Dubai had been considered as alternatives in a discussion with Cricket Australia officials on the sidelines of an ICC executive board meeting late last month.

    The PCB had turned down the offer to stage the matches at a neutral venue when CA initially expressed their reluctance to tour last year. Butt had said there was a possibility of hosting the Test series against Australia at neutral venues as well. “If Australia do not play the Tests in Pakistan there is a possibility of playing the Test series in England,” he said.

    Australia have not played in Pakistan since 1998. In 2002, due to security concerns, a three Test series between the two sides in Pakistan was shifted to Colombo and Sharjah.

    Schedule:
    April 22: First ODI at Dubai
    April 24: Second ODI at Dubai
    April 27: Third ODI at Abu Dhabi
    May 1: Fourth ODI at Abu Dhabi
    May 3: Fifth ODI at Abu Dhabi
    May 7: Twenty20 at Dubai

  32. #32 by khansahab on February 27, 2009 - 1:13 PM

    So Pakistan is busy with international cricket at least up to June.

    In March Pakistan play an ODI series with Bangladesh. In April and May we have this series against Australia and then in June there is the T20 World Cup.

  33. #33 by Varun Suri on February 27, 2009 - 2:14 PM

    Javed,

    Although i missed today’s match as i was on my way back from Ahmedabad to Delhi but looking at the Scorecard it seems it was a pretty close match.

    I have always believed 20-20 to be like a Lottery, Now officially India is the No.1 20-20 Team ( Unless the rankings have changed after these 2 defeats) but against NZ Indias’ record is 0-3 but does that make NZ the No.1 Team in the World?

    Hence I have always believed this bang-bang version of Cricket to be just like Warm up Games before the real series starts, Ofcourse it’s nice if they win everything but i am sure not many in the Indian Contigent would take these results seriously as even though the Indians lost the first one comprehensively but on any other day the 2nd one could have gone India’s way or could have ended as a Tie.

    So, to conclude 20-20 is a good fun to watch but one should not be too bothered about the Results. The only reason Why it was a big deal when India won the 20-20 World Cup was because it was the first time India played a World Cup without the Trimurti and it was the first time Hamar Dhoniyaa was leading a bunch of Young players which Pepsi likes to call Youngistan in India…..

  34. #34 by khansahab on February 27, 2009 - 3:02 PM

    Varun

    I agree. I don’t think T20 matters that much and winning it is indeed like a lottery. Pakistan reached the final of the T20 World Cup in 2007 and almost won it too, so that should indicate that average teams can succeed in that format.

    This is not to butter myself, but since day 1 I have been very critical of T20 cricket. That is because I know how addictive it can be for the general public and also how unlike it is to Test cricket, which is really the essence of what cricket is about. I wrote on Pakspin against it and at that time I was in a small minority of sceptics. It is encouraging to see more and more people realising that T20 should not be the future of cricket. How far will we take cricket? There will be a time when there is hardly any difference between gilli-danda and cricket.

  35. #35 by khansahab on February 27, 2009 - 3:05 PM

    Ironically, one of the reasons why Test cricket is on the decline is because the ICC has tried to make cricket a very pro-batsman game since the past 10 years. Of course, when pitches are flat and lifeless, batsman will make huge scores and teams will end up making scores of 450+. To a point it is interesting to see boundaries being hit, but then the game ceases to become competitive. That is why we are seeing many draws.

  36. #36 by khansahab on February 27, 2009 - 3:45 PM

    No reserve player to be considered

    Pakistan cricket team manager, Intikhab Alam has ruled out the possibility of inclusion of any reserve player in Pak team for the second test against Sri Lanka. “We will be picking up the final line up from the 15-member squad and we will not be reinforcing our team from the list of five reserve players “,he told APP here on Friday.
    PCB selection committee named pacers Sohail Tanvir,Abdul Rauf,opening batsman Nasir Jamshid,discarded all rounder Shahid Afridi and off spinner Saeed Ajmal as the reserve players for the second test commencing from March first at Gadaffi stadium.
    He said efforts would be made to come up with a balanced playing eleven from the squad which has some young promising players, including fast bowlers and batsmen.
    “We have Sohail Khan and Muhammad Talha to add fire to our pace battery and I thing our performance in the first test at Karachi was quite good on a wicket which was dull “,he said.
    When asked Pak team manager said that the wicket being prepared for the match looks quite good with grass left on it and he believes that it will help in deciding the match.
    “I had a look at the surface, I can say it is a good pitch and we will be going all out to exploit it to get a favourable result “,he said.
    Intikhab Alam was upbeat when asked the chances of his team in the test. “We will be going into the match with a sole purpose to win it and I think a positive approach will be the key to success in the tie which is equally important for both the teams after the drawn match at Karachi “.
    The team official praised the captaincy of Younis Khan and said he set a brave example through his batting prowess and skills at Karachi by smashing a triple century.
    “He is doing fine in the role of captain and I firmly believe he is a right choice as a team leader and the change in captaincy was made at a right time when things became difficult for Shoaib Malik in team handling “,he said.
    “We anticipate that Younis in the role of captain will be a role model in future as well because he has all the abilities to lead the team to success “,he asserted.
    He said the second test is a new beginning for the team and players should leave behind what happened at Karachi and the type of wicket was there to bat.
    “It is a new start and all of them (players) should be focused and in the line of duty and they must put in collective effort to thwart a challenge from a tough opponent who also must be aiming to win the match “,he said.
    Intikhab Alam said as a team manager he is enjoying his responsibility with the team and he is delighted that all the team players are fully committed and doing hard work.
    Answering a question he said keeper Kamran Akmal is in excellent form both behind the wickets and as a batsman. “ Look the way he batted at Karachi and then exhibited higher level of keeping and I would say it was it a wonderful performance on part of him”.

  37. #37 by khansahab on February 27, 2009 - 3:50 PM

    So Intikhab has announced none of the reserve players will be considered. In fact people are saying the team will be selected from the 12 players originally drawn out by Younis, with only one change beckoning which is the replacement of S Khan with Talha.

    This is disappointing to hear because Nasir Jamshed should have replaced Manzoor and Afridi should have replaced Faisal Iqbal. Tanvir perhaps should have replaced Arafat, although Arafat’s decent bowling in the 1st innings and then a 50 when batting, has secured his chances of selection in the 2nd Test.

  38. #38 by JAVED A. KHAN on February 27, 2009 - 4:20 PM

    khansahab on Ijaz Butt’s comments about Dubai schedule, you have to throw caution in the air when quoting him. Because, he speaks his BUTT out and each time it turns out to be something else. Until and unless it is confirmed by the Australian Cricket Board we have to consider it as “Butt Splatterings” Time and again we have seen him mopping his on Butt do’s.

    Intekhab Alam is another character, he loves to talk to the media, btw what is his role?

  39. #39 by M. Y.. Kasim on February 28, 2009 - 12:26 AM

    Javed A. Khan.

    I am sure you, Khansahab and Awas must have remembered when I first joined your earlier blog about two or three years ago with the same message that Pakistan should start giving chances to new and rising talents the moment they spot them.

    To keep mediocre players with “shukr-sabr” is no way forward. Keep looking for new, exciting players, give them extended run, if they are good, fine, if not, replace them. Thats how the teams of 80s and 90s were built and carried forward.

    I had no way of expressing my thoughts and was looking for a way for outpouring of my views and finally, you guys came to my rescue and gave an opportunity for what it is worth.

    Believe me, I strongly think thats the only way. You gave the example of Mansoor Akhtar. Ask any cricketer of that era. In the nets and during the practice sessions Mansoor looked a classical batsman. If you have Javed Miandad’s autobiography by Dr. Saad Shafqat, Javed defended Imran by stating that he too supported Imran since Mansoor mysteriously did not transform his promise into the Tests.

    I can give you the case of Anwar Ali, and Abdur Rauf, the previous under-19 world cup fast-medium bowlerrs. They were among the heroes of out triumph. They were never given a single opportunity. ” Kuoon? Nikah toot jaati” Those mediocre Rana and Rao and Shahid Nazir and sundries were kept on because they were the “Girains” but these poor lads were never tried out. Who knows? they might turn out to be a match winner.

    Similarly, Fawad Alam, Sarafaz Ahamed and many other youngsters who are performing consistently, if you ignore them again this time around, they will lose their confidence and you will lose some of the world-class players as always.

    As of now, two of the hot Fast-Medium bowlers, one right-arm, another, left-arm are on the horizon. One has been grabbed, get hold of the othe. I am talking about Mohammad Talha and Mohammad Aamer.

    Give both of them Test chance, take them to Bangladesh and by the Australian series they will have enough experience to replace ganjeri-bhangeries.

    Another couple of lads I am very much impressed are Ahmed Shehzad and Umer Amin. Give these two youngsters an extended run at the highest level and you will solve the problem of 50/60 run batsmen on placid pitch.

  40. #40 by Varun Suri on February 28, 2009 - 5:04 AM

    khansahab,

    I do not agree that the test-cricket is on the decline, more and more people prefer to watch the games on the Television rather than the Uncomfortable Sub-Continental Stadiums. Gone are those days when you had only two options to enjoy a Cricket Match- Radio or in the Stadium.

    For sure the Stadiums everywhere with the exception of Aus, SA, Eng and NZ are usually empty or with very few spectators but the fact of the matter is fans in countries like Pak, Ind, Sri and Bangladesh are more passionate about Cricket and follow it more seriously even though they may not be turning in big numbers at the Stadiums.

    I have been following Indian Cricket since 1991 but i must confess i have never seen a Cricket Match either in India or abroad. The conditions of the Stadiums in India are so bad that unless until one gets a VIP pass or something special it is very difficult to enjoy the Game and i prefer to sit at home and watch it on TV even if that means bearing with Arun Lal’s and Sivaramakrishnan’s, although i do not mind Ravi Shastri as he rarely goes overboard or gets emotional like Gavaskar.

    So in conclusion i think Test-Cricket will always have it’s share of loyal supporters which will keep this Game alive because people who understand Cricket all over the World acknowledge the fact that Test-Cricket is real Cricket. Maybe 50-50 might lose out on 20-20 in the future but the loyal Cricket fans will make sure that Test-Cricket is always alive.

    Javed,

    I apologise to Legslip readers for assuming that people will understand what i meant but as usual your explanation is spot on. I chose to omit Laxman from the Big four and named them Trimurti because he was anyways not a part of One-Day or 20-20 at that time.

  41. #41 by Salman Khan on February 28, 2009 - 5:23 AM

    On Javed’s comment about Inzi

    “a man of his principles” : I agree.
    “a strong character” : Re-agree.
    and IMO, a great batsman of his generation.

    But this thing about his 19 out of 21 centuries being match winning is I reckon a bit over-hyped at times.One has to take 20 wickets to win a test match. There are a lot of batsmen out there scoring lots of centuries but what can they do if their team does not have bowlers to take 20 wickets?Inzi,at least in the first three quarters of his career,had a string of world class bowlers to make his centuries “match winning”. Most of the centuries scored by Haynes and Greenidge were “match winning” as well , that is because they hardly ever lost test matches due to WI pace battery.

  42. #42 by Salman Khan on February 28, 2009 - 6:00 AM

    And I failed to mention poor Sunil Gavaskar who , despite having scored 13 test centuries against the most consistently fearsome pace attack of all times , can count only very few of his centuries as match winning.

    About the Tableegi Jamatis. I have faced plenty of them during my time as a student in AMU. Personally , I am not a big fan of them , or atleast the ones I came across. They always had this superiority complex and were usually pretty inflexible about their views on religion and by extension , life.They also had a very argumentative nature and any friendly discussion over a “Shaam ki Chai”would soon turn into a hot debate.TJs also had “scouts” who used to move around various Halls ( A Hall is a complex of 3-4 hostels)looking for students to go on these 3 day Jamaats where one left for a nearby town ,lived in a local Mosque for 3 days , and generally immersed himself in prayer , preaching or listening for those 72 hours.

    The concept of religion being a personal thing between God and a Human Being did not exist for most of them and at times it was obviously forced on the students but that did not deter TJs.I am possibly being a bit too harsh, because otherwise they were all fairly nice guys and sincerely believed that they were doing the right thing.

  43. #43 by JAVED A. KHAN on February 28, 2009 - 6:35 AM

    Dr. Salman Khan

    I do agree with you on both your points.

    1. Yes, Inzi had some good bowlers but, that was between 1992 to 1999 but since he became captain those big bowlers were not there anymore. He had to rebuild the team and the Actor did not contribute much in winning those matches. And as a captain his batting improved and the stats prove my point that his average also increased in both forms of the game after he became the captain. Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes together did a great job for the mighty West Indies of that era, but Inzi did the same all alone PLUS he had the extra burden of captaincy which Greenidge and Haynes did not have. I am not talking about Inzi’s TJ-ing, I am only referring to his cricketing abilities and his cricket acumen. And on both these counts you agree with me.

    2. As regards Tableeghi Jammats or TJs in general, perhaps I am the most hated person among the TJ’s in my community. Because, I never fulfilled their requirements or did not have the prerequisites such as, a beard or a Dish Dasha or a Utangee Shalwar or a dheela Pyjama. I am a clean shaved, Farangi Libaas wala modern goora looking, so-called Muslim. But, my religious knowledge is definitely better than most of the Tableeghis who came to preach me.

    I am not boasting about my religious knowledge, but I know where I stand. And, whenever they initiated an argument at someone else’s house at a party or a gathering, they lost the debate because, they used to get emotional whereas, I kept my cool and in the end they used to say: “brother why don’t you join us in Tableegh? You have Mashallah such a good Deeni Taleem and you can present your thoughts more forcefully than us and if you do join us, Allah will give you more rewards here and hereafter and blah, blah…”

    I simply cannot stand that idea of going door to door to convince people, in fact I was very rude to them when they rang the door bell at my house at 4:30 a.m. in the morning during the summer time and that too on a week-end. I don’t like the Halaqa’s because they never invite a knowledgeable person or a scholar but, one of them who calls himself an AMIR is like an Andhaon may Kana Raja and he blabs some hi-fi Internet stuff and says, 5 times Inshallah in one sentence and six times Alhamdolillah and Jazakallah before a sentence and after a sentence and thinks that he is a good orator.

    I can’t stand those goatee beard kids who think they are all-knowing and possess great religious knowledge, the fact is they are very rude and arrogant. One of my friends said, he invited them for a dinner and after the dinner when they were leaving not a single one said, the food was good, thank you very much for inviting or exchanging any courtesies whatsoever, in fact they don’t even look into your eyes while leaving also don’t look into your eyes when you talk to them or when they are shaking hands, they are looking somewhere else and their hands are like a banana peel or a pair of worn socks, then why bother shaking hands?

  44. #44 by JAVED A. KHAN on February 28, 2009 - 6:41 AM

    Dr Salman

    I forgot to reply to your comment about Sunil Gavaskar. The reason he has few match winning centuries is because he was not a team player, he played for his personal records and his milestones. By saying this I am not taking away the credit he deserves as a test cricketer but, the fact remains that he is not like Dhoni or Sehwag who are team players. I remember that 60 overs ODI in which he opened the innings and carried his bat through……. remained not out at 36 after playing the entire 60 overs in one of the ICC World Cups. So, what else do you expect from him? Varun said something interesting about his commentary that he gets emotionally overboard…. that is because what he could not achieve as an ODI player in his life he wants to accomplish it from the commentary box. 😀

  45. #45 by khansahab on February 28, 2009 - 12:04 PM

    Varun

    You presented your views quite well and I will agree. However, for one reason or the other, Test matches are not raking in the money they used to, and I blame this partly on the Asian bloc.

    As India/Pakistan/Sri Lanka have seen their economies expand over the past decade, people are quickly becoming more materialistic and life trends are changing fast. The fact of the matter is, only the most die hard cricket fans can bear to watch Tests now- people like me, who will wake up in the middle of the night to watch a match despite poor video and audio quality on the internet.

    In the “white” countries, people watch Tests for different reasons. They don’t have this system of people learning about cricket in “mohallas” or “parks”; if you want to play cricket, you need to join a club and if you are serious about the game, you get coached pretty much everything in relation to bowling and batting. Hence, players are more technically sound and they have good temperament and patience. That is why you have such different teams for Tests, ODI’s and T20 cricket when it comes to the “white” nations.

    So the crowd is used to watching slow cricket being played. In fact in Britain, it’s culture to go with your family to watch cricket with beer on a sunny day. What I am trying to say here, is that for some people, Test cricket is the only way to play cricket and it is a part of their culture to watch it at a stadium.
    Here your argument kicks in that in India and Pakistan, the stadiums are not meant for everyone so naturally that restricts who can come to watch cricket. But a counter attacking point is that, even in India and Pakistan the crowd numbers have declined increasingly over the years whereas the quality of stadiums has been improving. 10 years ago only Gaddafi Stadium in Pakistan was what you would call a stadium with “international level facilities”; now National Stadium in Karachi is also an international level stadium and Multan Stadium and Faislabad stadiums have improved.

    Some of that is due to the team performance I guess, as far as Pakistan is concerned. Naturally when the team is not performing, people don’t feel like watching cricket.

    Regarding commentary, I agree Gavaskar gets too emotional. I remember when India and Australia were playing in some series and some decisions were given against India- Ponting was involved in one of them where he signalled the batsman as being “out”. Gavaskar lost his temper and he said some pretty inappropriate things.

    I like Shastri and Bhogle. I think Manjrekar is also OK. One thing I will give to all Indian commentators is that, they can all speak English properly. In Pakistan only Ramiz Raja can speak English well (here I am talking about former cricketers who have turned into commentators). I used to respect Ramiz a lot but lately his comments regarding Shoaib Malik and Kamran Akmal were very biased and he was almost going over the top trying to defend Malik when Dominic Cork and Sri Lankan commentators were criticising Malik’s captaincy.

    Ramiz was the one who interviewed Malik after that controversial domestic T20 match, which Malik deliberately threw. I was surprised the PCB did not sanction him seriously, and when Ramiz interviewed Malik, Malik was very disrespectful and arrogant.

  46. #46 by khansahab on February 28, 2009 - 3:11 PM

    Pak selectors back rookie leggie (Yasir Shah) for B’desh ODI series

    Karachi, Feb 28: Pakistan selectors may prefer rookie leg-spinner Yasir Shah over experienced Danish Kaneria in the upcoming one-dayers against Bangladesh, sources said.

    Sources close to the national selection committee said that chief selector Abdul Qadir was very keen to give Yasir a try in next month`s away series.

    “Qadir rates Yasir very highly and while captain Younis Khan and coach Intikhab Alam want the senior leg-spinner Danish Kaneria to be played in the series, the selectors feel Yasir is a good prospect for limited overs cricket,” one source said.

    He said besides Yasir, who hails from the North West Frontier Province, the selectors also want to send a new look one-day side to Bangladesh.

    “They are considering blooding other young players including left-arm pacer Mohammad Aamir, opener Ahmed Shahzad and some others in the series,” the source added.

    Pakistan are due to tour Bangladesh immediately after the Test series against Sri Lanka, ending on March 5.

  47. #47 by abdul on February 28, 2009 - 5:34 PM

    Interesting prospect in Yasir Shah. Kaneria isn’t going to be an effective “matchwinner “in odi cricket and his first class record have demonstrated that. I would prefer Mansoor Amjad as he is a specialist leggie and can bat and field very well to. But above all good to see Pakistan opting for specialist spinners in ODI cricket rather than bits and bobs in Malik and Afridi as specialists are the “matchwinners” who are going to cause threat and have the potential to turn the tables. So hence let’s see what this Yasir has to offer but from the little I’ve seen Mansoor seems to be better but he’s absent from the first class game. Perhaps injured?

  48. #48 by JAVED A. KHAN on March 1, 2009 - 6:25 AM

    Gul took 2 early wickets to dismiss both the openers, but the two mighty Sri Lankan batsmen are there on the crease and are going to fight. The rookie Talha so far is expensive and I dunno if he can make any inroads at this stage!

    I still cannot believe that batsmen like Faisal Iqbal, Khurram Manzoor and bowlers like Kaneria or a so-called all-rounder like Malik can be of more utility in a team than Shahid Afridi? If you are talking about a specialist batsman or a bowler then you have to keep in mind a batsman like Younus Khan, Mohammad Younus, Inzamam, Miandad, Zaheer Abbass or bowlers like Waqar, Wasim, Saqlain.

    Therefore, it is better to have a player who has more overall utility in the team than the so called Butts and Misbahs and Malaks or Khatmals.

    The PCB is doing a great injustice with Mohammad Yousuf and the future generation will NEVER forgive them for this.

  49. #49 by Abdul on March 1, 2009 - 8:09 AM

    Kaneria is bowling far too flat.This is like a Kumble spell and that’s simply not Kaneria.

  50. #50 by khansahab on March 1, 2009 - 11:20 AM

    I don’t know why Younis chose to bowl first because yesterday he hinted he would like to bat if he won the toss.

    The problem with bowling first is that if you don’t have good spinners or medium pacers, you kind of lose the advantage you gained from bowling first and grabbing early wickets. Gul did that for Pakistan but got no support from Arafat or Kaneria.

    Kaneria has hardly bowled at good length. I don’t know why he is over pitching so much? He was doing the same in the 1st Test. He has strictly become a 4th and 5th day bowler now.

  51. #51 by khansahab on March 1, 2009 - 11:25 AM

    Akmal again dropped a catch today off Kaneria.

    Akmal should be dropped, he can start batting like Bradman, but if he is dropping catches he should not be in the team.

    The PCB should stop this stupidity once and for all.

  52. #52 by Abdul on March 1, 2009 - 12:00 PM

    Pakistan bowling is out of sorts and lacks fire power. I can understand why people are losing patience with Kaneria. He looked far too easy and predictable to play today. I can only insist people look at this scorecard.

    http://content-uk.cricinfo.com/southafricandomestic/engine/current/match/359928.html

    Yes he’s doubtful but he’s the best alternative we have for test cricket and had I been in Qadir’s shoes I know who I’ll be phoning up and recalling for Pakistani citizenship. Otherwise I’m afraid it’s mansoor Amjad for Odi and we’ll have to preserver with Kaneria until Usman Qadir enters the frame.

  53. #53 by khansahab on March 1, 2009 - 12:25 PM

    Abdul

    You have to blame Akmal equally. The amount of catches he has dropped off Kaneria is unbelievable. I know dropping one or two catches is acceptable but when you drop so many, it can seriously dent a bowler’s confidence.

    In fact just watching Akmal’s face probably makes Kaneria feel there is no hope.

  54. #54 by Mohammed Munir on March 2, 2009 - 4:59 AM

    Our bowling is really putting us down and except for Gul, we have a bunch of mediocres. I don’t know if Tanvir is injured or something, but if not, he should have definitely played. Similarly, what Danish Kaneria is doing with his leg spin, Afridi could have done ‘almost’ the same in bowling but he would have defiantly compensated that more then enough with his batting and fielding.

    I agree with Javed Khan, in Pakistan we need more utility players and less specialists, because there is nothing special that our specialists are doing specially Faisal Iqbal who could have been replaced easily by Fuwad Alam, another good utility player.

    During Pakistan’s peak days we had Imran Khan, Wasim Akram, Abdul Razzak, Azhar Mahmoud, Moin Khan, Amir Sohail who were all ‘bits and pieces’ players but then they used to gel together very well and were a formidable unit.

    On the other hand, what everybody thinks about Younis’s decision of winning the toss and opting to bowl first?

    On Asian wickets, it has become almost a trend to bat first for the captain winning the toss and thus avoiding to bat the fourth innings. Now here an interesting thing is that, we all know very well, Sri Lanka having two deadly spinners in “M & M” and playing on Asian wickets can be dangerous, whereas Pakistan hardly have a good pace attack to take advantage of bowling first, so I think Younis Khan have made a mistake.

  55. #55 by khansahab on March 2, 2009 - 9:50 AM

    This pitch was meant to be a sporting pitch and Younis and Inti both said it was going to help the bowlers.

    I don’t see what help it is providing to the bowlers because Sri Lanka are looking to reach 600.

    I also think Younis should have batted first. He made a gross error in judgement because he thought his pacers will give him frequent wickets and Kaneria will be more effective on this pitch. Sometimes a very attacking captain decides to bowl first anyway, but I don’t have a problem with Younis being very attacking because I’d rather have that than have Shoaib Malik who was too defensive.

  56. #56 by khansahab on March 2, 2009 - 12:22 PM

    LOL @ Waqar:

    “In the past Dilshan used to bowl in a one-days……..”

  57. #57 by khansahab on March 2, 2009 - 12:30 PM

    This is Butt’s and Manzoor’s inexperience showing. Butt wanted to get his 50 before the end of the day, and Manzoor should have never called for the run.

    I am not a big fan of Manzoor but I have always said in Tests, Pakistan needs an opener who can survive for more than 50 balls. Everything else comes later- strike rate, aggressiveness and shot selection. That is why I was never very keen on disregarding Manzoor immediately when he failed a few times. I would still opt for Nasir Jamshed, but again I don’t think that is because Manzoor is a bad player.

  58. #58 by JAVED A. KHAN on March 2, 2009 - 1:54 PM

    Munir

    By calling Imran Khan, Wasim Akram, Abdul Razzak, Azhar Mahmoud, Moin Khan, Amir Sohail as ‘bits and pieces’ players, you are not making your point very well here. Because, Imran and Wasim both were specialist bowlers. Imran matured with time and became an all-rounder and emerged as a great captain too so, his utility in the team was incomparable to many. Wasim besides his deadly bowling improved his batting but, was not as reliable as Imran was.

    The difference between Abdul Razzaq’s batting and Azhar Mahmoud’s batting was similar to that of Imran and Wasim comparison. Abdul Razzaq was definitely a more accomplished all-rounder than Azhar Mahmoud and you can call Mahmoud a bits and pieces player. And Aamir Churial was more of a batsman than a bowler. However, I understand what you are trying to say but, my only point was those 3 were not bits and pieces players.

    Right now only Gul proved that he is a specialist bowler and Danish Kaneria once again failed to impress his critics and I haven’t seen the match so I cannot comment on Talha’s bowling. But, it seems he has conceded a lot of runs and got the solo wicket of Murlidharan. So, the bowling department is definitely very weak and they have allowed Sameraweera to score yet another double hundred and also boosting Dilshan’s confidence by allowing him to score hundreds in Pakistan (his ODI hundred and now)

    If you have all-rounders in the team, then the main bowlers get a break otherwise they have to bowl a marathon session when 600 plus runs are scored and, it is for this reason there are big scores because the main strike bowlers cannot keep a good line and length bowling for long hours on a flat pitch. Imagine if Afridi and Fawad Alam were also assisting the weakened Pakistan bowling attack, they would have rescued the main bowlers and gave them time to breathe.

    This match once again depends on YK and Co. if they can bat the entire 3rd day and avoid follow-on then it will be heading for a draw, if they fail then obviously the result of this test series would be 1-0 in favour of Sri Lanka. So, by the end of the third day one can say “Oonth kis kurwat baith taa ha?”

  59. #59 by Abdul on March 2, 2009 - 4:57 PM

    Compare Kaneria’s figures of 0-180 odd from 45 over’s and contrast with Imran Tahir’s performance in the domestic match recently where his 30 over’s match spell claimed astonishing figures of 8-100. You can blame the pitch but I for one certainly now which bowler’s figures will be more threatening and have the credentials to turn the tables. Tahir has glimpses of Qadir in his bubbly attacking approach to wicket and spins the ball greater from both his leg break and googly and even has the “anda” (egg) delivery up his sleeve which recently bamboozled Ricky pointing in the side match. In my opinion he is the best spinner Pakistan have had in the locker since Mushtaq Ahmed’s departure from the game.
    Khansahab feel free to criticise but I’m telling the saddening truth !

  60. #60 by khansahab on March 2, 2009 - 5:09 PM

    Abdul

    Unsurprisingly you fail to understand. It is of no consequence how good Tahir is, but the bottom line is because he has no permanent residence in Pakistan it is near impossible for him to ever play for Pakistan.

    That is the saddening truth.

  61. #61 by Abdul on March 2, 2009 - 5:30 PM

    Munir, basically a ball which pitches short of a length and skids on. It can deviate as well and therefore is rather awkward to play and has been defined as the “anda”. It’s another fascinating discovery of Pakistan’s mystery and vicious spin department (not including Kaneria!!!!!!).

    By the way thanks for the link but I’m fine as I’ve already known that site.

    Salam

  62. #62 by Mohammed Munir on March 2, 2009 - 5:54 PM

    Abdul …

    LOL @ (not including Kaneria!!!!!) ;|

    Thanks for the explaination. I had heard about the Jalebi delivery but this Anda is a new one for me.

  63. #63 by khansahab on March 2, 2009 - 6:54 PM

    Senators call for PCB board to be ‘replaced immediately’

    By Imran Ali Teepu

    Monday, 02 Mar, 2009

    ISLAMABAD: The Senate Standing Committee on Sports on Monday unanimously passed a consensus resolution that ‘the present management of Pakistan Cricket Board be replaced immediately with induction of competent people to run the board’.

    Senators Tahir Mashahdi, Enver Baig, Haroon Akhtar Khan, Dr Firdaus Kausar, Nilofer Bakhtiar and Sabina Rauf signed the one page resolution here at the Senate Secretariat.

    The committee members, who met under acting-chairman Tahir Mashahdi, noted in their resolution: ‘It is our considered opinion after having three meetings with the PCB that the affairs of the board are in disarray and the current management does not have the capabilities and vision for any improvement in the game of cricket’.

    In their recommendations to the PCB committee the Senate suggested that the cricket body shift their US $15 million cash reserves to the banks having good credit ratings.

    The members asked the PCB management to come-up with solid replies regarding the allegations leveled against him (former COO Shafqat Naghmi) within 30 days.

    The committee also recommended that the Gaddafi Stadium project should be completed within the cost of Rs314 million, as estimated by the consultants Nespak, adding that all the 22-district cricket grounds must be completed within a target deadline.

    The senate body also advised the former COO Naghmi to submit an approval letter issued by the former chairman Nasim Ashraf allowing him (Naghmi) to work as a consultant for the ICC Champions Trophy.

    In a thinly attended show the PCB Chairman Ijaz Butt, Federal Sports Minister Aftab Shah Jilani, committee’s chairman Zafar Iqbal Chauhdry and few senators failed to turn up for the meeting.

    The acting chairman of the committee Tahir Mashahid expressed his displeasure over the absence of the chairman PCB while the board COO Saleem Altaf replied that the chairman was hectically engaged with the visiting ICC officials who arrived the other day.

    Senator Enver Baig pointed out: ‘The PCB should submit the names of the ICC officials who are visiting Pakistan and the reasons as to why the chairman failed to appear before the committee despite a delay in the scheduled committee meeting.’

    A defenseless and unprepared cricket board’s COO Saleem Altaf failed to answer questions to the board regarding the financial issues and the infrastructure development work.

    Commenting about the foreign accounts, Senator Haroon Khan said the US $15 million was public money and needed to invested wisely: ‘There is a possibility that the banks may go default so all the responsibility will rest on the board’.

    The PCB CFO Mohammad Naeem assured the committee that the board would take urgent remedial measures regarding the foreign accounts issue.

    The former COO Naghmi gave a pictorial presentation to the committee members regarding infrastructure development and future development programme initiated during their tenure.

    Naghmi, now a top federal government bureaucrat, defended his case eloquently placing the three-member board management – Saleem Altaf, Mohammad Naeem and a regional cricket association president – under more pressure.

    The PCB financial head Naeem requested for some time to reply various points in Nagmhi’s pictorial presentation.

    Regarding a query about the ICC consultancy fee, Naghmi accepted that he was paid some amount in dollars by the international cricket governing body saying: ‘Getting the consultancy fee was within the legal frame work of the board’.

    The PCB COO Saleem Altaf rejected Naghmi’s claims and stated: ‘They simply have no document in writing or any approval,’ adding ‘we have asked all the officials who are currently employees of the board to repay back the money as the issue was raised by the auditor’.

    Haroon asked the PCB COO why Naghmi was acquitted from the repayment action of the board, to this Slaeem Altaf replied: ‘He (Naghmi) is no more an employee of the board’.

    Haroon also warned the PCB management that if they failed to defend the allegations leveled against him (Naghmi) the board should officially tender an apology to the former COO.

    Senator Haroon also grilled the board’s management for their failure to prepare properly before appearing before the board.

  64. #64 by Abdul on March 2, 2009 - 7:02 PM

    LOL @ Khan’s pic

    ha ha ha ha ha ha ha !!!!!!!!!!!

  65. #65 by Abdul on March 2, 2009 - 7:07 PM

    Sorely not 21 /22? That’s just the normal thing to say to make you sound youngish!!!!

  66. #66 by khansahab on March 2, 2009 - 7:12 PM

    Abdul

    You have asked me this before and I told you my secret.

    This is indeed me, but you have said “sorely” and I can assure you no part of my old body is “sore”. Why did you think I was sore? Actually I have a sore throat, so you may be right.

    I am 68 years of age and a retired judge by profession. Everyone knows about it on this blog except you.

    Sorry for not divulging any earlier.

    Kind regards

  67. #67 by Abdul on March 2, 2009 - 8:57 PM

    lOL and Khan again ! I am 52 by the way !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  68. #68 by JAVED A. KHAN on March 3, 2009 - 4:32 AM

    BREAKING NEWS

    FIRING IN LAHORE, 5 POLICEMEN KILLED SRI LANKAN CRICKET PLAYERS INJURED.

    Marray Nawaz Sharif – Marray Shahbaz Sharif KUTTAY.

    They have done it…….. as expected they have done it.

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