hammad.mateen

Hammad Mateen

The author is a mechanical engineer, education management professional and freelance writer working in the social sector, he tweets as @hammadmateen (twitter.com/hammadmateen)

Misbahul Haq: In with the old, out with the young and new?

The decisions made by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) recently have left me with mixed feelings. I have generally appreciated most of the decisions taken by the board regarding the restructuring of the domestic cricket circuit in the country. But as far as some of their decisions regarding the national side go, I’ve been less than impressed. The appointment of Misbahul Haq as head coach and chief selector is one of those decisions, and his team selection seems to be another cause for concern. Misbah has already proven himself as one of the best captains Pakistan has seen in its ...

Read Full Post

Pakistan cricket has many problems; removing Mickey and Inzi will not solve them

After Pakistan’s dismal performance in the first half of their World Cup campaign, fans have been angry to say the least. The team is being criticised from left, right and centre, in both acceptable and unacceptable ways. It seems that the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), like in all the previous World Cups where we didn’t live up to expectations, is feeling the heat and will be looking for scapegoats. After being whitewashed by England prior to the World Cup and their unpredictability in the tournament thus far, questions have been raised and fingers have been pointed. As a cricket fan ...

Read Full Post

Younis Khan and PCB couldn’t reach an agreement – whose loss is it?

Just a few days ago, talks between the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and former Test captain Younis Khan, for the appointment of the latter as the coach of the Under-19 Pakistan cricket team, fell through. Unconfirmed sources claim that the demands Younis made with respect to his remuneration was one of the deal breakers. The other bone of contention was the authority Younis had insisted on for his role as the coach, which included a very strong say in matters of selection as well. The PCB, apparently, only wants a coach who can just be around the team and guide ...

Read Full Post

Given PSL’s success, Najam Sethi is our only hope to bring cricket back to Pakistan

While Ali Sethi managed to save the first episode of Coke Studio season 10 with a beautiful rendition of Ranjhish Hi Sahi, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) recalled his father, Najam Sethi, as PCB’s new chairman. It was clearly a great week for the Sethi family.  But this is not the first time Sethi has found himself at the helm of PCB’s affairs. He has competed with Zaka Ashraf for the position in the past as well, which definitely caused a lot of embarrassment for Pakistan on the international front. Sethi generally garners animosity from the masses because of his affiliation with the Sharifs and the absence of ...

Read Full Post

When tape-ball cricket was the best kind there was

Watching the Pakistani team bat against Australia yesterday morning in the first Test match somehow made me wish every Pakistani batsman could get two chances to bat in each inning. The thought, although impractical, opened the doors to my childhood memories when I used to play tape ball or ‘kirmich’ ball (as we used to call it) cricket quite regularly. This is how we played; if one team was a player short, a batsman from that team was allowed to bat twice. This is so far from the real world of cricket and yet many good hard-ball cricketers give credit for their success to this ...

Read Full Post

What can we expect from the Pakistan vs West Indies ODI series?

This year has been quite an unlucky year for the Pakistan ODI team. There have only been a couple of times in the last eight ODIs that the Pakistan team has left the stadium celebrating. Pakistan has won eight out of 15 T20 matches and two out of four Tests played this year. This in turn has made Azhar Ali look like that child in the family who everyone is always scolding and pushing to learn from his friends (Sarfraz Ahmed and Misbahul Haq), who are doing exceptionally well. Pakistan drew the Test series against England after winning the 4th Test ...

Read Full Post

Misbah isn’t Imran Khan, Afridi, or Wasim Akram – he’s better

He made Pakistani cricket boring, but our team became predictably consistent with their performances under his leadership. Fortunately, the flamboyance that rode on erraticism is now missing from our Test team. They have started playing methodically and there seems to be a plan and a strategy being followed in each game and situation. Misbahul Haq changed the way Test cricket is played by Pakistan. Misbah ul Haq scored his maiden ton on Lord’s against England. Photo: AFP The captain of the number one Test team in the world did not always enjoy a smooth terrain though. It has ...

Read Full Post

Despite continuous ODI losses against England, I still have hope for my team

The pounding taken by the Pakistan team in the third ODI against England didn’t come as a surprise for me. I mean, we are ranked number nine and were playing against a team ranked number five in the world. The difference in rankings was obvious on the field. England outclassed Pakistan (like they have been throughout the ODI series so far) in every department. England’s players celebrate victory in the third one-day international (ODI) cricket match between England and Pakistan at Trent Bridge cricket ground. Photo: AFP England has been good in the field, exceptional with the ...

Read Full Post

Will Mickey Arthur and Inzi be enough?

It’s safe to say that the Pakistan cricket team, along with the management and coaches have failed to deliver this past year. How can fans forget the dismal performance at the World T20? We only managed to win one game against Bangladesh. Right after, literally everyone related to the performance of the team came under heavy fire. Controversies, knit picking, gossip and slander amongst the cricket big wigs were making headlines. But after all the hue and cry, things began to settle down. Considering all the new changes taking place in the cricket circuit, most fans will be expecting a ...

Read Full Post

It’s down to India, West Indies and England, who are you betting on?

Amidst the pandemonium of leaked reports, press conferences, media bashing and, most importantly, Kulbhushan Yadav, the World T20 tournament in India is quietly and swiftly moving towards its conclusion. Not many Pakistanis tune into sports channels these days considering D-Chowk and Numaish Chowrangi are more entertaining. But ardent fans find their way to their TV sets to watch cricket being played in its truest form at the T20 World Cup. No adrenaline rush is equivalent to the thrill of watching cricket. A few days ago, I was quite disturbed after Pakistan crashed out of the match against Australia. My disturbance further transformed into diarrhoea while watching ...

Read Full Post