Stories about ODIs

Is Babar Azam a ‘selfish’ batsman?

Pakistan have now lost 10 consecutive ODI matches. A 4-0 drubbing against England, the top ranked ODI team, is not surprising as I had predicted a 4-1 defeat in my previous blog. We were below par in all three departments: bowling, batting and fielding. But many positives have also emerged from this series. The highest run-scorer for Pakistan in the series was Babar Azam. He scored 277 runs at an average of 55.40 and a strike rate of 99.64. However, did those figures help the team in winning any game? If not, then why so? While Azam’s classy batting is very pleasing ...

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#PakvsNZ is an entirely different and difficult test for the men in green – Is Pakistan prepared for the challenge that awaits?

Let’s face it, most of us, including me, don’t like getting up early in the morning, but one thing that made me sacrifice my sleep and get out of my warm, cosy bed in winter in the wee hours of the night was cricket, when Pakistan was away on tour to the Trans-Tasman region. Waking up in the middle of the night can be a tad bit difficult but watching Pakistan win is surely worth it. More accustomed to playing on the dead pitches in the subcontinent, Pakistani cricket team’s trip to New Zealand poses an entirely different test altogether. ...

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Dear Pakistani selectors, why do you keep picking the same old, tried and failed players?

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 ...

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What can Pakistan expect to achieve in the Test series against West Indies?

Thirteen days after Dave Richardson presented the ICC Test Championship mace to Misbahul Haq and Pakistan contentedly sat on the top of the ICC ranking table, India dislodged Pakistan from the number one position that is now theirs to claim for a while – unless New Zealand can steal a win in the third and final Test and Pakistan clean sweep the West Indies. Pakistan Test captain Misbahul Haq (R) receives ICC Test Championship mace from ICC Chief Executive David Richardson in Lahore on September 21, 2016. PHOTO: AFP Number one or not, everyone can agree that ...

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Younus Khan, the enduring and artistic hat lover

Inexperience doesn’t pay – but getting better sure does. The immaturity and inexperience would bring disgrace to any young team, but one dynamic leader in the middle-order could bring the ship to right direction. Younus Khan, the one mature enough in his prime form and who solidly worked on and off the field to make an impressive score in cricketing circles for Pakistan was also followed by the grand milestones. “I am playing for the nation of Pakistan and it makes me feel so proud whenever I walk on the ground. I owe it to my coaches, family, and friends and above all ...

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“Ahmed Shehzad wasn’t needed in the playing 11” – Are you sure, Haroon Rasheed?

Ahmed Shehzad – also called Pakistan’s Virat Kohli (minus a little talent and Anushka Sharma by the side of course – is young, stylish and confident, to the extent of even being cocky at times. He’s a selfie addict and is also considered as Boom Boom Afridi’s best buddy in the side. Now its shopping time with Lala..!!! A photo posted by Ahmad Shahzad (@iamahmadshahzad) on Jun 1, 2014 at 6:24am PDT Apart from all that is said, Ahmed Shehzad is Pakistan’s 216th international Test and 172nd ODI player. In terms of ODIs specifically, Shehzad is the third highest run-scorer for Pakistan in the last 12 months after Muhammad Hafeez and Azhar Ali. In ...

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Dear PCB Chairman, how about focusing more on Pakistan and less on India

Dear Sir, I am writing to you to request your attention towards an issue that affects me in the capacity of a regular cricket spectator and a fan. As you know, Pakistan has been deprived of competitive international cricket for over six years now, the wait for us cricket fans to see international action in our grounds is becoming increasingly painful. Even though your efforts did result in making the Zimbabwean cricket team tour Pakistan for a couple of T20s and three ODIs earlier this year, consistency needs to be ensured and the success of that tour needs to be promoted much more ...

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Five superwomen of Pakistan’s women cricket team who have outdone their male counterparts

Cricket is not merely a sport for Pakistanis, it is our nation’s passion. The game also serves as a uniting force for the country. How can Pakistani fans forget the countrywide celebrations when Pakistan lifted the World Cup back in 1992? The 1992 World Cup overnight turned our cricket team into a bunch of national heroes. There are numerous cricketers who serve as role models for the youth to follow, regardless of whether they have won major tournaments or not. Saeed Anwar, Rashid Latif, Mohammad Yousuf, Shoaib Akhtar, Shahid Afridi, Younus Khan and many others were not a part of the ...

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Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara, a duet like none other

Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene were the two stalwarts of Lankan cricket for more than a decade. The contribution they have made to Sri Lankan cricket is extremely significant and which separates them from the rest in terms of stature and amount of runs scored. I had the pleasure of watching them throughout their respective careers and during that span of time, and every now and then, they surprised me with something absolutely spectacular. Elegant and graceful shorts were perhaps the only shorts in their books. From Jayawardene’s sublime inside out shot over cover, to perfect square cuts of Sangakkara, every shot they ...

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What is it about Umar Akmal that people don’t understand?

Manzoor, Zahoor and Saleem Elahi. Imran and Humayun Farhat. Moin and Nadeem Khan. Hanif, Mushtaq, Sadiq and Wazir Mohammad. Wasim and Ramiz Raja. This is not a listicle of the cricketing families of Pakistan, otherwise it would have also included Imran Khan, Javed Burki, Majid Khan, Anil Dalpat, and Danish Kaneria (who are cousins, by the way). If this list is not enough, a simple Google search will yield nearly 162 families in the realm of world cricket. And the reason for mentioning all of this you ask? Well, it is to ask a simple question: Why are only the Akmal brothers considered as being the perennial symbol of one of ...

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