Other than selfies, what was Ahmed Shehzad’s contribution in the Champions Trophy to deserve the cash prize?
Pakistan just pulled off an incredible victory against politically imposed nemesis India in the Champions Trophy final last month. The victory tasted so sweet that the government and media houses (don’t forget the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) too, they’re here somewhere) took it upon themselves to virtually term this win as the epitome and peak of Pakistan’s performance. Really? Wait, we’re still ranked sixth in the world? Hold on to your horses, people; it’s a great win but Pakistan cricket has a long way to go. The victorious Pakistan team lift the Champions Trophy, India v Pakistan, Final, Champions Trophy 2017, The Oval, London, June 18, 2017. Photo: ...Read Full Post
“Pakistan will play the final of ICC Champions Trophy 2017!” A little over a month ago, the aforementioned statement would have made you laugh till you cry, but tables have turned now. Who would have thought that a team which was down for the count after a demoralising defeat in the opening match of the Champions Trophy against India, would end up in the final a couple of weeks later? Virat Kohli gives Ahmed Shehzad a send-off after Bhuvneshwar Kumar gets him lbw , India v Pakistan, Champions Trophy, Group B, Birmingham, June 4, 2017. Photo: Getty Images But unquestionably, the ...Read Full Post
Pakistan entered the International Cricket Council (ICC) Champions Trophy as the lowest ranked team in the ODI charts. Even before the tournament began, Pakistan had no hope of winning, or in more realistic terms, had no real chance of crossing the group stage, with India and South Africa being in the same group.
The Edgbaston cricket ground will be the pinnacle of attraction for the entire cricketing fraternity as India and Pakistan renew their age-old rivalry this coming Sunday. Although the elusive International Cricket Council (ICC) Champions Trophy commenced yesterday, you can be assured that the tournament will dive into fifth gear when these two arch rivals lock horns. Champions Trophy is the only major ICC event where Pakistan has the upper hand over their nemesis. The green shirts have claimed victory twice and suffered defeat just once in a total of three matches. Both Sarfraz Ahmed and Virat Kohli are coming into this mega event (ICC events) with their first major assignments as captains of ...Read Full Post
Pakistan’s archaic style of ODI cricket is up for a stern test in this summer’s Champions Trophy. The team is grouped with South Africa (ranked number one in the International Cricket Council (ICC) rankings), arch-rivals India, and Sri Lanka. A realistic assessment might be for the team to win at least one out of these three games – more likely to be the one against Sri Lanka – but that would also mean having to do away with the optimism of a Pakistani cricket fan. Regardless of how bad we think our team is, almost every fan will, as always, ...Read Full Post
In sporting terms, as with perhaps all aspects of national life, Pakistan is probably amongst the few unfortunate nations that have regressed, not progressed, with time. There was a time in the 1992, when Pakistan was the World Champion in not one, but four different sports – cricket, hockey, squash and billiard. But as merit started taking a backseat, and mediocrity, incompetence and favouritism reigned supreme, today we see the former champions finding it hard to even directly qualify for the cricket World Cup. Oh what a fall! Pakistan lost the first ODI against West Indies, raising a lot of questions about our nonsensical selection policies. You ...Read Full Post
The playoffs of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) kept the spectators on the edge of their seats with every match turning out to be an absolute classic. All three matches lived up to the expectations with some high quality cricket on show. Let’s take a look at the game changing performances from the knockout stage of Pakistan’s premier T20 league. Ahmed Shehzad’s blistering knock Ahmed Shehzad of Quetta Gladiators celebrates his half century against Islamabad United during the final of Pakistan Super League at the Dubai cricket stadium on February 23, 2016Photo: AFP A good start is always a ...Read Full Post
“So close yet so far.” This phrase accurately portrays the Quetta Gladiators’ campaign in the inaugural edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL). Even though they were not able to cross the final hurdle last year, this time, however, it’s possible for them to lift the title. With the second season just around the corner, the Quetta-based franchise is probably hoping that the team can replicate it’s heroics from the first edition but for that to happen, some of their key players would really have to raise their game. Ahmed Shehzad The talented right-handed opening batsman has fallen out of favour with the selectors on ...Read Full Post
Unpredictability is the word that best describes what drives the daily operations in Pakistan cricket. Players touted to be “the next big thing” get sucked into doldrums of financial constraints or fitness issues, inevitably resulting in them having to give up cricket entirely. Three players with similar names and twists of fate came onto the scene with great intent and promise but eventually went missing without logical reasoning. Usman Khan Shinwari When the selection committee announced his name in the T20I squad for the series against Sri Lanka, scheduled to be held in the United Arab Emirates, Usman Shinwari was a name unknown to many. Hailing ...Read Full Post
With Mohammad Amir shackling the stumps of Jake Ball to wrap up a famous Test victory in Pakistan’s cricketing folklore – a few of us are sceptical of the chances the green shirts might have to give the English team – especially their bowlers – a hard time in the forthcoming Tests. Mushtaq Ahmed says Mohammad Amir (pictured) was nervous at Lord’s.Photo: AFP Yes, you have the jurisdiction to celebrate your success but not at the cost of not learning from your cathartic failures – especially those at the openers’ slot. Imran Nazir, Shahid Afridi, Taufeeq Umar, Imran Farhat, ...Read Full Post