"I'm not afraid of losing Pakistan captaincy" - Misbah-ul-Haq
He’s come under scrutiny for his defensive methods, but Misbah-ul-Haq says that he’s not afraid of losing the Pakistan captaincy and is ready to serve the national team under any capacity.
Misbah’s been put in the line of fire after Pakistan lost to Zimbabwe in the second Test in Harare and levelled the series 1-1. This is especially big news after stories that Shahid Afridi would like to captain the team again began making the rounds.
“I have never asked for the captaincy or demanded it. Even now it is for the Pakistan Cricket Board to decide on the captaincy issue. Whatever they decide is acceptable to me,” Misbah told reporters after arriving in Lahore from India where he led the Pakistan domestic T20 champions, Faisalabad Wolves in a disappointing Champions League campaign.
“I was asked to captain the national team, and it was an honour for me, and I have done my best. So I am not taking any pressure. Whatever decision the board takes, I will accept it,” he added.
Misbah also brushed aside questions related to the 2015 World Cup and his future plans. “It is irrelevant to talk about the World Cup now because one doesn’t know what is going to happen the next minute, so I don’t want to make any comments,” he said.
After winning the first Test against Zimbabwe, Misbah apparently lashed out against some former players and critics, calling them “dirty” players, and his words came back to haunt him after the defeat in the second Test.
He went on to say that the current players in the team are relatively new and aren’t getting as much exposure at the top level, unlike players in other countries.
He pointed out that this was apparent in the Champions League T20 too. Faisalabad Wolves did not get past through the qualifying rounds, however Misbah scored in all three games, including a brilliant 93 in the last game.
In the second Test defeat to Zimbabwe, Misbah scored an unbeaten 79, which unfortunately went to waste.
“I am satisfied with my own form, but the other batsmen also need to get runs consistently and that is a worrying aspect for us before the series against South Africa.”
He seemed genuinely concerned that the Pakistan cricket team might suffer in the long run due to lack of international cricket playing time and no regular tours. He also pointed out that none of the players had been a part of the Indian Premier League too.
Misbah will be meeting with the Pakistan Cricket Board caretaker, Chairman Najam Sethi and national selectors this week to take some crucial decisions on how the team is managed while on their tour of South Africa, starting October 14.