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Sialkot = 7
Lahore = 2
Faisalabad = 2
Rawalpindi = 1
His last ODI 100 was in 2008
He has scored 2 half centuries in his last 17 ODI innings
an international opposition.]]>
Put aside the grave political unrest in Pakistan and you see a society by and large based on morals. Among these, respect for elders is prevalent and regardless of the social changes occurring in a developing country, it is a moral that society should strive to sustain.
It is with that mentality; existence of rank and respect for those of greater experience, that makes society function. Servants, a concept foreign to most in the West, with their ‘master’, employee with their employer and cricket players with older cricket players.
Izzat, which is honour (or respect), permeates Pakistani society and is a concept which dictates the actions of most individuals. While on a social level, izzat and respect of elders is vital to Pakistan’s functioning society, its drip down into sport is detrimental to team spirit.
For ‘elders’ read ‘seniors’. We often read and hear Pakistani players refer to ‘seniors’ in the side. It’s like an elder brother relationship; a reverence when it goes well, dependence when it doesn’t.
The purpose of a team in any industry is that the components of the team work together to achieve a desired result. It is particularly important in sport; you win together, you lose together. To do this, you go in as equals and this is where the concept of seniority is holding the Pakistan team back.
Fundamentally, younger players coming in to the side or squad – Umar Akmal, Umar Amin, Nasir Jamshed and the like, enter with an air of inferiority even if based on ability, they are at least the equal of more experienced pros.
This has a two-fold detrimental impact. Firstly, a younger player will not be themselves either in squad comradery or in their performances. They will defer to their seniors meaning they are not expressing their obvious natural talent.
Secondly, it leads to these younger players not taking their chances or responsibility. They will naturally look to senior players to get the team out of a hole. The prevalent attitude of deferring to elders manifests itself in ways which hinder the maturing and development of younger players coming into the side.
For Pakistani cricket to move forward, this structure needs to be demolished and a meritocratic selection and retention policy should be the dominating philosophy. Whether Messers Misbah, Younus and Malik are called “bhai” should be neither here nor there.
Younger players need to be treated as equals and quid pro quo they need to act as equals as well. The preferential treatment given to ‘seniors’ by both the selectors and other players must be arrested.
None of this is to say the team must lose respect for teammates; that is vital though the road must be made two ways and newer players be given their due respect.]]>
“If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.”
Henry David Thoreau
It seems Thoreau could have been talking about Pakistani cricket. With much said about thepotential of young players, the system continues to deprive them of the foundations they need to beable to carry the team forward.
Pakistan have sneaked home against South Africa to level the series 2-2 with one game to play. The victory should not, however, paper over any cracks that persist in the team.
Whatever the result of the fourth ODI, in the big picture, is a moot point. The batting line-up chosenby Pakistan for this format has raised a lot of eye-brows. Team selections answer questions; thisPakistan mix is begging more questions.
200. That is the overall age of Pakistan’s top six batsmen (at the time of writing; at the time ofreading it has obviously increased). I am not one who thinks youngsters should be played for thesake of it. Nor am I one who thinks “seniors” should be selected based on reputation. The balance iskey and Pakistan’s selectors are increasingly getting that balance wrong.
One-Day internationals are approached differently across the globe. For the Asian countries, theyare the commercial key. For Australia, England and South Africa, they are the breeding ground forplayers of the future. To see if a player can establish himself at international level, they tread waterin ODIs.
Mohammed Hafeez as vice-captain and with a useful bowling arm and Misbah Ul-Haq as skipper arecertain starters. The questions over the top six come from the selection of Farhat, Kamran Akmal,Younus Khan and Shoaib Malik.
This will be the next test series South Africa play whereas Pakistan are due to tour West Indies before this in
a rare test matches only tour for them. Looking down at Pakistan’s Future Tours Programme one doesn’t expect
them to lose any of the next 9 test series between now and their next tour of England in 2016 as all of the series
are either in Asia or against lower ranked opponents; expecting several series wins along the way. Pakistan will then
host Sri Lanka and Australia to follow.]]>
this summer. Mr Pakistan Cricket is an iconic Pakistan supporter who is now widely recognised in his costume
in the stands. He has attended the 2011 World Cup, matches in Pakistan’s 2011 tour of the West Indies
and travelled to watch the team at the 2012 World T20 in Sri Lanka most recently.