The excruciating experience of watching Pakistan bowl

Published: February 3, 2015

Muhammad Irfan is our only good bowler. If his height is so effective, why don't the other bowlers just sit on his shoulder and deliver their balls? PHOTO: BCCI

As I write this, Pakistan has just conceded 369 runs against the New Zealand batting side. Maybe this would not be so hard to take if I had not grown up watching legends like Imran Khan, Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis and Shoaib Akhtar.

The current state of our fast-bowling makes the heart grow even fonder of Mohammad Sami. Let that sink in, Mohammad Sami. A man who once bowled the longest over in ODI with 17 balls, including seven wides and four no-balls. I will even go to the extent of saying Ataur Rehman was a better bowler than Sami and he could not even keep all his clothes on before delivering the ball.

Ataur Rehman (L), Mohammad Sami (R)

Muhammad Irfan is our only good bowler. If his height is so effective, why don’t the other bowlers just sit on his shoulder and deliver their balls?

All their biggest ehsaan, Ehsan Adil, can do is not play. Bilawal Bhatti bowls exactly like what his surname rhymes with. I am convinced Bilawal Bhutto is a better baller than Bhatti, if not a better bowler.

Kal bhi Bhati zinda tha, aaj bhi Bhati zinda hai (Bhatti was alive yesterday and he is alive today).

The only thing worse than our bowling is Atif Aslam singing in English. Did Strings not see him cover Billie Jean before destroying the best World Cup song ever? Just when Junaid Jamshed was making his comeback to music, we scare him away with a song like that.

Talking about music, what went through the mind of the DJ at the ground who played John Legend’s ‘All of Me’ during the breaks? Does he not know Pakistani fans? No, we do not love all your curves and your imperfections; you either win or do a Maulana Abdul Aziz and run away in a burqa.

This is against New Zealand. A team even Wajahatullah Wasti scored 84 runs against in a World Cup semi-final. If you are too young to remember Wasti, first thank God you did not waste a few lifetimes watching him bat. To offer a comparison, Wasti makes Misbahul Haq look like Shahid Afridi. The storm troopers in Star Wars and Bollywood villains have a better strike than Wasti.

If the Pakistan cricket team is deliberately under-performing in order to take other teams by surprise during the World Cup, they are doing a fantastic job. Khurram Khan, the vice-captain of UAE, even fancies his chances against this Pakistan cricket team. They let us play cricket in their grounds, the least we can do is lose to them and give a huge boost to their chances of getting the Test-playing nation status. Since we banned the hunting of rare birds, our foreign policy requires our team to sacrifice the World Cup to please our Arab overlords. If we are going to lose anyway, why not lose to our Muslim brothers?

Even the most optimistic fan of cricket in Pakistan does not truly believe that we have a chance of winning the world cup. I am not sure if Haris Sohail’s room was truly haunted but the ghosts of New Zealand’s bowlers are sure to keep our bowlers up for a few nights.

Afridi vowed to reclaim his record for the fastest century in ODI Cricket. He just did not clarify that he would be on the bowling side when that record is made. Anything is possible in a match that has Younus Khan bowling actual overs. At his age, some men cannot even go to the bathroom by themselves. Imran won the World Cup to build a cancer hospital, I think we are playing this World Cup to fund the Misbah and Younus retirement fund.

Misbahul Haq (L), Younis Khan (R)

Maybe it is just an elaborate prank by Younis to get back at the Pakistan Cricket Board for missing out on the 1992 World Cup squad.

Why are we playing cricket anyway?

If this was the world competition for the worst selfies in the world, at least Ahmed Shahzad would have had a chance of winning it.

Ahmed Shahzad (L), Shahid Afridi (R)

The universe is conspiring to give us some hope. Junaid Khan is out of the World Cup and as fate would have it, another left-arm bowler played his first domestic game. Is it not about time we listen to God’s wishes and pick Mohammad Amir already? We voted for the Big Three, the least they can do is let us pick Amir. Najam Sethi needs to put some pantee puncture in the ICC and make this happen.

If not, there is only one hope in Pakistan.

Think about it, everything will fall into its rightful place. Imran is having a hard time running Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P), and Junaid is out of the world cup. If we put two and two together, we can get a Khan for a Khan. We have all seen Imran post videos of him working out and running, if he is not getting ready to play in the World Cup, what would be the point of appearing in shirtless pictures? I am sure Veena Malik also wants to be picked for the World Cup.

Imran Khan (L), Junaid Khan (R)

Imran, if you want to be prime minister, go back to Australia and make us win the World Cup. I swear we will appoint you as the prime minister the next day. A World Cup tournament is shorter than your dharnas and a single match is shorter than a jalsa, you are clearly fit enough to play. You cannot be any older than Misbah.

At least it is a good thing that the Pakistan bowling team will be using two new balls from each end according to the new ICC rule. Believe me, our cricket team needs new balls.

On a serious note though, whoever we pick, let us get behind them and support them throughout. They may not be the most talented Pakistan World cup squad ever but this is what we have. Let us unite and back them all the way.

By all the way, I mean all the way back to Pakistan after the first round.


Shehzad Ghias

A graduate from the LUMS Law School and is running his own theatre production company, Cogito Productions.He works as a theatre teacher at various schools. He tweets @Shehzad89 (

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Noman Ansari

    Very true. I think we should all stock up on Imodium before the world cup.Recommend

  • نائلہ

    This is too funny :DRecommend

  • Seedha Sada

    Waqar younis kept Saeed Ajmal out of the team during the 2011 World Cup for God knows what reasons.Abdur Rehman was constantly preffered over Ajmal until Ajmal got his oportunity against WestIndies.Waqar is repeating the same thing with Wahab now.No way on earth could a man with some cricketing knowledge could let Ehsan Adil and Bhatti to be in the playing XI above Wahab.Yes Wahab can be expensive but trust me he won’t go for 93 in 10 overs and he may get us wickets in Australia.Please Waqar Younis don’t do this to us again.Recommend

  • Noor

    HAHAHA, our team is in such a bad condition, its funny.
    Still… Greens all the way!Recommend

  • Ch. Allah Daad

    No doubt this group of quickies is not great but you will observe that almost every bowler, fast or slow wish these days that he had not been born. The cricket has swung far too much in favour of batsmen. I may be wrong but I think in both matches batsmen performed poorly compared to bowlers. They should have scored 300 plus runs in each match. In this world cup over 300 runs are must for any batting side.Recommend

  • tani

    Ridiculous piece of writing……..As simple as that……..Recommend

  • Manish

    ……….As I write this, Pakistan has just conceded 369 runs against the New Zealand batting side. Maybe this would not be so hard to take if I had not grown up watching legends like Imran Khan, Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis and Shoaib Akhtar……………

    Having followed Pakistani team in 90s, I would say Aqib Javed was another great bowler for Pakistan, though he is seldom talked about.
    In some ways, he had more control over his deliveries and swing, than the reckless Akhtar.Recommend

  • نائلہ

    A true supporter is behind their team in the worst of times!Recommend

  • Noman Ansari
  • Maximus Decimus Meridius

    Pakistan VS UAE is going to be the most hard fought match in the history of cricketRecommend

  • نائلہ

    I have tickets to the Pak vs Ireland one and now im honestly reassessing if we will win or not :(Recommend

  • Abdullah719

    I really, really get where you’re coming from and I do think that Wahab (sad that it may be) is probably a better bowler than those that were posing as such a couple of days ago, but you shouldn’t have written this: “Yes Wahab can be expensive but trust me he won’t go for 93 in 10 overs”, because he can and he has done so. But he does well sometimes too. Which is why he may be better than the others.

  • Seedha Sada


  • Maximus Decimus Meridius

    Well you can go and support Ireland. Just enjoy the good cricket lol.
    Some of my friends are coming over the Pakistan/India match. We are predicting that India will make 400+ if they bat first and pak will be out at 180. If Pakistan bats first they will make 215 , which India will take down in 35 overs.Recommend

  • L.

    Lol no we will support our team all the way!

    And your friends have ind vs pak tickets?!! OMG they were sold out in like 10 minutes! So lucky :)

    And for your predictions: Recommend

  • no love lost

    if AFRIDI BECOMES A CAPTAIN today, the next match hafeez will score a century, younis will score a century, akmal after 100 matches will score a quick century too.

    Pakistan Will brake its chasing record if AFRDI BECOMES A CAPTAIN.

    Appreciate Misbah for what he has done for this team. There was Nobody who was willing to take the captaincy when he step forward during those days.

    Why you guys dont understand that we are not having Home Series and its very diificult for a player to gain his lost form in overseas conditions. (UAE IS NOT A HOME GROUND, its like one)

    Aus in England AWFUL

    Eng in Australia AWFUL

    Aus in India AWFUL

    India in Aus MISERABLE

    *Steve Smiith was a night mare in UAE series and now he is scoring centuries in AUS.

    We are the only team that is not playing home cricket and still some how performing.

    *Where DHONI captaincy was gone, Where indian so called batting powerhouse was gone. Scoring millions of runs on their home soils and this TRI NATION SERIES and TEST Series with Aus, everybody was a humiliation expect kholi

    Lets Support our team in every situation

    Lets raise this slogan

    WE WILL GET IT BACKRecommend

  • Maximus Decimus Meridius

    omg, hilariousRecommend

  • Seedha Sada

    Ok you got too literal there.Point is he is a better bowler than say Rahat or Adil.I shudder to think what Pujara or Kohli will do to Rahat and Adil.Indians will absolutely annihilate our bowling attack.With Wahab in there at least we will have a chance.He has got pace and maybe at the end of the day this pace might be the deciding factor on those pitches plus Wahab has got the heart of the fast bowler.I can remember Ehsan Adil or Rahat Ali showing any kind of intent in any of the matches they have played.You seem like you do follow cricket so I believe you must have seen how Wahab bowled in the last Champions Trophy match against WestIndies.That was some bowling.With a meagre total to defend he bowled his heart out and was constantly at the batsman.I am not saying any of these things personally.Not too long ago even i wouldn’t have preferred Wahab in the starting eleven but with this squad at hand,He is by far the better choice.At least he will give us a chance.Recommend