Time to look for future

Pakistan’s batting line up performed poorly during the champions trophy match. Barring two batsman, no one showed any application and desire to stay on the wicket. The chronic problem with Pakistan’s batsman is that the moment they see a hard or grassy pitch, they get panicked. Pakistan, once famous for including raw talent in its team have totally abandon this practice and in last few years even after the continued failure of batsman in all conditions, no effort was made to infuse new blood in the team. Where ever any change was made, a tried& tested player with mediocre record was brought back in the team, as the fear of losing is constantly playing on the mind of those who are at the helm of affairs. Whenever a youngster is selected, he is discarded without giving proper chance to prove his mettle.

If we Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) want to put Pakistan cricket back on winning path, it need to take bold steps. Team now needs more young players who can be nurtured by few of the seniors around them to horn their skills

To initiate the process of change, I think Shoaib Malik Imran Farhat & Kamran Akmal should not be selected.

Imran Farhat barring a few innings never performed against top teams and his batting average of 31. 21 and Strike Rate of 69.23 are indications of his limited talent. As an opener, he only had one century and 13 half-centuries in 57 matches. Imran’s fielding is also not electrifying. He made debut in 2001 and played for a good 12 years, even then he failed to prove his worth to the team.

Coming to Shoaib Malik, even with his limited ability with the bat, he on several occasions batted well especially against India. He was once a useful spinner and a better fielder in the team, but now as his age is catching up with him, his performance is declining. Shoaib hasn’t even scored a half century for the last 32 matches. His last substantial innings was against India in 2009 during the champions’ trophy. As a bowler, he is not the preferred choice of his captains as he last bowled his complete quota of 10 overs way back in 2010 against Australia at Perth.

Kamran Akmal, a highly rated player in the eyes of selectors. He made his debut 11 years ago but all this time he remain an average wicketkeeper while as batsman his average of 26.22 in 154 matches is a proof that his batting ability are falsely blown out of proportion, to justify his inclusion in the team, although he is clearly not in the league of  high quality wicketkeeper/batsman representing other cricket playing nations.

In the current team,except for Captain Misbah Ul Haq, no other batsman in Pakistan’s batting line up have the ability to absorb pressure.    

Pakistan’s recent slide started during the one day series against England, played in Abu Dhabi/Dubai during 2012. In more than a year’s time, no concrete steps were taken to arrest this slide in the team’s performance.

Considering these facts and after witnessing team’s performance closely, in recent tournaments & bilateral series, I think the time for change has arrived

I hope selectors learn from the debacle at champions’ trophy, and for future assignments they select players on merit & capability and not on the reputation in order to avoid humiliation in future

Pakistan once a hockey super power is now a low ranked team in international hockey arena. Hockey’s decline started in 90s, when selectors because of the fear of loss, continued with aged player and used lack of bench strength as an excuse. Now selectors of cricket team are also using same excuse that lack of bench strength is preventing them from bringing major changes in team.

As cricket followers, it hurts to see the cricket team performing badly. Cricket is a binding force of this nation and let’s hopes PCB brings its house in order and takes appropriate measures to revamp cricket team and put the team on the path of success to bring smiles on 180 million people of this countryImage


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