Stories about Test cricket

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 ...

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

If you want a job in British banking, you must get rid of your brown shoes

Britain’s love for tradition is well known. From retaining the monarchy, even if just as a very expensive figurehead, to maintaining an all-white dress code during Wimbledon, Britain manages to hold on to some of its cherished traditions in an otherwise fast changing world. Test cricket still enjoys primacy in England, even as the rest of the world has embraced T20. Evening tea, the Royal Ascot horse race, the Queen’s Guard, and the iconic black taxis in London are part of a long list of lovable traditions that endure. While these are traditions that are usually seen in a positive light, ...

Read Full Post

The ones that could’ve been for Pakistan’s cricket team

The dilemma of selection is nothing new for Pakistani cricket. Our selectors have always had difficulties in choosing the right players for the right formats, and whilst some players went on to cement their place permanently in the team – others weren’t lucky enough to prolong their careers. One could argue that they were dropped rather unfortunately, and after being dropped, they somehow disappeared from the international arena. Here is a list of some promising players that could have been stars for the men in green. 4. Yasir Hameed In 2003, a young batsman emerged onto the international arena and broke records ...

Read Full Post

Could Sami Aslam be the answer to our opening woes?

Temperament is not a word often associated with us Pakistanis. We like whatever excites us the most. In other words, passion is what drives us and adrenaline is what keeps us alive. There is never a dull moment in the life of a Pakistani. I guess that’s just how it is. But sometimes (almost every time) all this “thinking from the heart” culture can have dire consequences. If we are ready to accept the fact that this ‘culture’ affects our lives in one way or the other, how can we not believe that this same ‘culture’ seeps into our sports, ...

Read Full Post

Four reasons to watch the Pakistan-England Test series

Only halfway through the summer of 2016 and the average sports fan is already having the time of his life! Starting off with the much anticipated Euros, which the Portuguese won rather unconvincingly, to the green grass of Wimbledon where familiar faces triumphed again, both in the men’s and women’s category. Only if you thought this was too much to handle, wait till the Pakistanis step onto the Lord’s cricket ground after almost five long years. Yes, that’s right. In case you have forgotten, a lot of sports is still left and interestingly enough, it’s Pakistan who takes on a ...

Read Full Post

I fell in love with cricket because of our legendary fast bowlers

Fast bowling is obsolete now. This phrase is difficult to comprehend for every cricket enthusiast of my generation. Honestly, it was the deadly fast bowlers of our country that made us fall in love with the beautiful game of cricket, in the first place. No doubt fast bowling has always been Pakistan’s trump card. We had the best pace attack in the history of cricket spearheaded by the great Imran Khan in the 80s, Wasim Akram-Waqar Younis in the 90s and the speed star Shoaib Akhtar in early 2000s. This trio was one of the most celebrated lots of fast bowlers in the history of the game. ...

Read Full Post

With PCB and BCCI unable to set aside their differences, what happens to cricket?

The story goes that the chef at Jaipur’s Rambagh Palace had 40 baby lambs slaughtered the day before Pakistan’s military dictator, and arguably the most hated man in his country, was to be hosted as part of his trip to India to enjoy a game of cricket. Former PM Rajiv Gandhi with then Pakistan President Ziaul Haq at the Palam airport on Decemeber 17, 1985.Photo: Hindustan Times Paying true homage to Mughal culinary traditions Safed Maas (White meat curry) and Akbari Raan (Akbari mutton leg) were on the menu as General Ziaul Haq rubbed shoulders with the likes of Lala Amarnath ...

Read Full Post

Why has Pakistan forgotten how to bat in the shorter formats?

Some say, it’s a confidence issue. Others say that it is the lack of international cricket at home. Fingers are pointed at the flawed domestic setup or the nepotism in selection. Whatever the case may be; as far as ODI and T20 cricket is concerned, Pakistan batting is indeed at its lowest ebb ever. After watching the recently concluded ODI series between Australia and India, I was mesmerised by the batting at display. It was aggressive, belligerent, but at the same time poised and full of confidence. Chasing or posting scores in the proximity of 300 and above was the ...

Read Full Post