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Posts Tagged ‘Pakistan cricket’

The history of sports is filled with romantic stories of unlikely triumphs. Pakistan’s T20 World Cup victory against Sri Lanka in June, after defeat in the first T20 WC final was the stuff of folklore. Someday, someone will make a film called, Boom Boom Pakistan!

All eyes on the boys in green once again, as they land in West Indies to defend the worthy title. Pakistan is the top ranked team in T20 version of the game, which has played 14 matches in WC’s and won 10 out of them. But the unpredictable lineup, known to be flamboyant, teeming with raw talent, ready to roar against any team certainly battles two opponents most the times, one is the team they are playing, other themselves.

Dynamic players like Razzak, Butt, Hafeez, Akmal, Asif, “young” Amir, Ajmal, Misbah need a strong captain and Afridi is fit to the task it seems. Intrinsic aggression with polished exuberance can only ensure victory for Pakistan. The shaky and often-trembling batting line-up would be the key, for the bowling department has enough variety and fire-power to oust any batting lineup. From the initial matches of the WC T20, pitches are low and slow, suiting medium paced cutters and spinners. Ajmal, Rehman, Razzak, Alam, Asif and Afridi would find the in-roads, whilst all eyes would be on the batting to live up to the standards of a world champion. Wickets in Pakistan are generally on the slower side, which favors our boys but fingers would be crossed.

Captaincy would be a defining role, for when to use spinners and batsmen who can bat anywhere from no. 1 to no. 6 will mean long lasting effects on the game on that particular day. So, the limelight is on the master of this version of the game, Shahid Khan Afridi.

BOOM BOOM AFRIDI, BOOM BOOM PAKISTAN!

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PCB’s latest investigation that has come down heavily on the players is a brazen attempt to save the skins of senior board members

Yes, discipline is a must and discipline has to be ensured. Who ensures discipline? What team in the world doesnt have minor tussles or what players are not “guilty” of leg-pulling in professional jealousy? I remember the brawl between Javed Miandad and Imran, both masters of the game and highly respected cricketers. Maybe Imran Khan was “managing” affairs in the dressing room well, as Pakistan won the 92′ World Cup when these two stars were in the team. Also, tussles between Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, Aamir Sohail and others have been known to all. What went wrong today as PCB slammed top Pakistani cricketers in an unprecendeted manner? Kamran Abbasi writes an insightful article:

The PCB committee of inquiry wants to punish Pakistan’s cricketers. The reasons are several, some known others only to be guessed. Unfortunately the whole episode is an exercise in passing the buck. The architects of the disastrous failure of Pakistan cricket have investigated their own performance and decided to blame some other people, the players.

When it comes to sympathy I have none for failed administrators and bureaucrats, who cling on to Pakistan cricket like leeches sucking every drop of lifeblood from a once vibrant national enterprise. These inquirers have a misplaced sense of justice: let he who has sinned cast the first stone. Isn’t the PCB’s latest diversionary investigation a brazen attempt to save the skins of senior board members?

Let’s take the accusations and the punishments. Shahid Afridi has already been punished by the ICC. The Akmal brothers could easily have been fined and disciplined without the hoopla we have had to endure, a self-inflicted public relations disaster. What Rana and Malik have done, nobody is yet sure? If it is match-fixing then how can one year bans suffice? It can’t be that.

If it is subversion of team spirit then there has to be better way of dealing with this. Indeed, the board encouraged this disruptive behaviour. When Younis Khan stepped down because a group of players refused to back him, the cricket board should have supported the captain. Instead, Mr Butt and his fellows undermined the institution of the national captaincy.

Who appointed the captain, coach, and manager for this debacle, and other recent ones? Who is ultimately responsible for discipline and professionalism? Yes, the grand inquisitors who are hoping that if the players take the flak they will escape without censure. Moreover, how can a squeaky clean board have dalliances with cricketers tainted by previous scandals, including the match-fixing scandal of the 1990s?

Ill-discipline from players does require sanction. Match-fixing requires life bans. But what about the members of the cricket board, who will hold them to account? Ultimately, it is the cricket board’s duty to manage issues of discipline and misconduct. It is in the governance and management of these very issues that the Pakistan Cricket Board has failed. Yet only Iqbal Qasim has accepted any responsibility. Power without accountability, this is the tragedy of Pakistan and Pakistan cricket.

J’accuse the cricket board, Mr Butt, and Mr Zardari for bringing dishonour to our national game and our nation. The players are puppets, yes glamorous puppets to be sure, but it is the puppet masters that are the root of the problem. Senior management creates an organisation in its own image. For shame go, but we all know these puppet masters are without shame.

– Kamran Abbasi

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To Chairman Indian Premier League,

Mr. Lalit Modi.

Cc: Mr. Shashank V Manohar, Chairman BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) ; Mr. Indu Jain, Chairman the Times of India group

Dear Sir,

We are living in testing times. With nearly 1/5th of humanity living in Indo-Pak subcontinent, with a military might that can end human existence on both sides of the border, with a history that goes back to hundreds of years and with over 3 full fledged wars been fought between the two great nations since 1947, we are surely living in testing times.

There is so much that is common between us and at the same time, so much that differentiates us. This perplexed relation between India and Pakistan implies huge responsibility on the shoulders of those who matter, on both sides of the LoC. However, civil and military leadership on both sides has been playing with the future of 1.5 billion human beings. When leaders fail to bring the two arch rivals together, it is the responsibility of media and sporting personalities to try and do what their leaders hadn’t been able to do for decades, i.e to try and cement the cracked relationship between the two nations.

Such a much needed endeavor was initiated by the Times of India and Jang group under the aegis of “Aman ki Asha”. No media group can ensure peaceful ties between Delhi and Islamabad, but it was step in the right direction and if properly addressed to cater for the mistrust between the people of two countries, such initiatives can bring about a positive change. Similarly, cricket is one thing that is followed like a religion in India and Pakistan; it can serve as catalyst to cement the cracked relationship between us. Despite all differences, controversies and grievances, there exists an inner feeling amongst the cricket lovers to revive cricket relations between the two. I have had many Indian friends over the years and I speak on their behalf as well as on the behalf of Pakistani youth, as I represent a considerable segment of youth in Pakistan.

It was really disappointing and shocking to read media reports of today’s auction of the potential IPL players. Pakistan is the top rated T20 team in the world with a win percentage of 76 %. Many Pakistani players, including those considered for auction at the IPL today are the top rated players across the globe and it was sad to know that none of the IPL franchises chose to even bid for a single one of these match winners. Clearly, if they were there for the auction, it meant they knew what security threats they would be playing under plus not to forget, Ex-Pakistan Captain and veteran all-rounder, Wasim Akram is serving as a coach with Kolkata Knightriders. Chairman PCB, Ijaz Butt has also explicitly reiterated no visa issues and security problems for Pakistani players willing to play the IPL. Many of these players, performed well in the ICL with no security concerns not too long ago.

We feel there is prejudice in the IPL and the people running it are biased or playing in the hands of lobbies not wanting peaceful cricketing relations between the two countries. I would not go into the detail of other allegations against the BCCI for lobbying against Pakistan and dragging politics into sports, vinegar in honey and hate in a passion.

Though, Pakistani cricket would not suffer as much, as we will be ready to take on any team, specially India in the next T20 World cup and the world will witness unprecedented support from fans across the world, as our players would not only play cricket but melt hearts.

Best of luck with your glittery IPL and you surely have lost one ardent follower because of your partiality with Pakistani players and Pakistani cricket.

Regards,

Syed Ali Abbas Zaidi

Islamabad.

P.S: I am copying some text from the Times of India official web-portal, under the title of “ Aman ki Asha “ (Source: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/amankiasharticleshow/5406022.cms)

Peace with Pak: Pitching for friendship, On And Off The Field

Indian cricketers come back from Pakistan with sweet memories of fun, food and friendship. So do the players from the other side of the border.

Javed Miandad

Is the proverbial barbed wire enough to keep India and Pakistan apart? After the horrific 26/11 events of last year, the two governments have hardened their positions. But, the cricketers think differently. We deal with something that is beyond caste, creed and religioun. It’s our passion for the game that binds cricketers from either side of the border. Whenever I get a chance to meet the likes of Sunil Gavaskar or Dilip Vengsarkar, I seize it. I believe the feeling is reciprocal when I visit India. The old generation of players regards each other for their cricket skills. But the younger players have much stronger bonding. Some of the current cricketers are very close to each other. These days, they don’t get enough opportunity to meet due to political tension. But I am confident that Indo-Pak cricket will resume again. If it doesn’t, world cricket will suffer. Whatever the official stand, cricketers from both countries have forged ties too strong to be weakened by terror or official rhetoric.

Irfan Pathan

My association with Pakistan goes back to my Under-19 days. As a young cricketer, it was fascinating to dream of meeting some of the legends such as Imran Khan and Wasim Akram. Then, in 2004, the famous Indo-Pak tour happened. It was a big break for me and I was really hungry for success on Pakistani soil. During that tour, I realized that on the field, Pakistani players are opponents, but off the field, they are very nice people. In Pakistan, players, fans and administrators are very hospitable. Among current players, I share a very good rapport with Umer Gul. I have known him since my Under-19 days. Even Danish Kaneria, who speaks Gujrati very well, is a good friend. During our tour, I remember, Mohammad Yousuf once brought food for the entire Indian team. Even Wasim bhai would give me bowling advice. It’s because of such friendship between us that the acts of a few haven’t affected the warmth that we share.

Yuvraj Singh

It’s unfortunate that India and Pakistan have not been playing each other for a while on a regular basis. I have had some good memories of playing in Pakistan. Some Pakistani cricketers took part in the inaugural IPL in 2008 and it was really nice to see them perform so well for their sides. Among Pakistani players, I am friends with Shahid Afridi, Shoaib Akhtar and Mohammad Yusuf. Whenever we meet, we all talk in Punjabi and have a blast. Even Harbhajan and Zaheer are part of this group. I had a memorable tour of Pakistan in 2004, when I went there for the first time. We enjoyed every moment of our trip. In future, I hope to see the two countries playing each other more often. Pakistan is a good team and they need to be complimented for winning the Twenty20 World Cup in 2009.

Krish Srikkanth

In 1989, when I toured Pakistan as the Indian captain, that series was historical in many ways. It was during that series that Sachin Tendulkar emerged as an international star. In 1989, Pakistan had a great team. Their captain Imran Khan wanted to beat us in the series, but we drew all the four matches. Even though we lost the ODI series badly, it was a great experience. It was one of the toughest tours for me. The tour was also a great learning experience for me. I still nurture great friendships with many former Pakistani cricketers. What
I like most about the Pakistanis is that they are very hospitable people. They know how to treat their guests. And at their parties, you can taste the best of cuisines.

 

 

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