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We deserve to be criticised: Misbah after NZ hammering

January 07, 2021 19:02 IST

Pakistan coach Misbah-ul-Haq said his team was below par in all departments

IMAGE: Pakistan coach Misbah-ul-Haq said his team was below par in all departments. Photograph: Jason O'Brien/Getty Images

Pakistan head coach Misbah-ul-Haq feels his struggling team deserves every bit of the criticism that is being thrown at them after a 0-2 loss to New Zealand in the just-concluded away Test series.

Misbah has made similar statements after Pakistan lost on tours to Australia and England earlier.

"We deserve to be criticised for our performances. When people expect good performances from you and you don't deliver, they are justified to criticise you," Misbah said in a podcast issued by the Pakistan Cricket Board.

 

Misbah said his team was below-par in all departments of the game.

"The way we fought hard in the first Test was very good and everyone expected a similar performance in the second Test but that didn't happen. We had opportunities in the series to win matches but we didn't take them," he said.

"This is something we have to look at as to why we can't cross that line between winning and losing a match. I have seen it happen many times in recent matches," he said.

He said fielding has always been a problem for the Pakistan team and this trend needs to change now.

"These things ultimately affected the result of the series. We need to improve our fielding," he said.

Misbah said the team management will analyse the mistakes made in the New Zealand series before finalising any changes for the upcoming home series against South Africa.

"We will look at making changes according to the home conditions and the South African team. We may also consider top performers from the ongoing Quaid-e-Azam Trophy for the South African series," he concluded.

England Women to tour Pakistan for first time in October

England Women will tour Pakistan for the first time to play three one-day and two T20 internationals in October, officials from both countries announced on Thursday.

The two T20 games will be played in Karachi on October 14 and 15 as double-headers alongside the men's team, who are set to visit Pakistan for the first time in 16 years.

Heather Knight's side will then remain in Karachi to compete in three ODIs on Oct. 18, 20 and 22.

"The England Women's cricket team has never toured Pakistan before so this is another important step in our history and journey," said Clare Connor, the England and Wales Cricket Board Managing Director of Women's Cricket.

"Not only will this be a cricket tour that provides valuable competitive opportunity to both teams, it should also serve as another powerful and positive message as we drive forward our equality ambitions for more women and girls to derive empowerment through the sport."

Pakistan and England last met in the Women's T20 World Cup in Australia last year, with England winning by 42 runs.

"I am confident the women's tour will open up opportunities for future tours that will further contribute in promoting women's cricket in Pakistan," said Pakistan Cricket Board Chief Executive Wasim Khan.

End of Kolpak era in England is boost for South Africa says Abbott

The end of the Kolpak system in England will be a major boost for South African cricket’s attempts to keep its best talent at home in a more competitive domestic scene, according to seam bowler Kyle Abbott.

The United Kingdom's exit from the European Union on Jan. 1 closed a loophole that gave anyone with a work permit from a country that has an associate trading agreement with the EU the same rights as an EU worker.

South African cricketers have been major beneficiaries over the years, signing lucrative contracts with English counties that automatically disqualified them from representing the national team.

Abbott has signed for South Africa’s Titans franchise for the rest of the 2020-21 season, a return to the domestic first-class circuit for the first time since he joined Hampshire as a Kolpak player in 2017.

The 33-year-old was part of the South Africa international set-up at the time across all three formats but has not played for his country since, while having become a leading performer on the county circuit.

He effectively gave up his international career for domestic cricket in England, among 45 South Africans to do so under the Kolpak rule since former spinner Claude Henderson became the first in 2004.

"With Kolpak gone it has closed the door for a lot of guys. That can only be good for South African cricket to keep the players here. The more experience and less watered down the (domestic) system the better," Abbott told reporters on Thursday.

"People don’t realise it was never an easy decision for any of us (Kolpak players). You catch a lot of flak from crowds. As much as South Africans didn’t want to see us go, the English crowds didn’t want to see us there.

"But at the end of the day, it was purely a career decision and I don’t regret anything I did."

Abbott will remain with Hampshire for two more seasons, at least, but now as an overseas professional, which makes him eligible for South Africa again.

"At the moment that is not in my immediate view. I had a very tough 2020 (due to the COVID-19 pandemic), where I bowled about five overs of competitive cricket. So at the moment I just need to get back to the space I was (in) 18 months ago."

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