Would the upright Azhar Ali step up and consider offering his resignation for his performances as batsman and leader? In the first ODI, Pakistan was in a strong position as New Zealand were six down by the 23rd over but our captain made a blunder by opting to reserve the quicks for later in the innings, instead of hunting for those last four scalps! To make matters worse, he opted himself to bowl. He may have high estimation of his bowling talents, but Mr Skipper, we don’t share the idealism.

The coaching staff can send as many messages as they want out to the captain but at the end of the day it is the captain who has to make the decision. Some are capable of taking tough decisions, others learn on the job, and some exceptions, no pun intended, simply cannot prove themselves worthy of the mantle.

The excuse after defeat against England was that they didn’t have an all-rounder like Imad. When he was available, he was dropped just after one match! Ironic, isn’t it? If the management wishes to develop Imad as solid batsman then they have to promote him up the order just like the way Razzaq was promoted by the great Wasim Akram. But for that Azhar needs to be courageous! The captain isn’t leading from the front. He’s getting out playing frustrating shots and the reason is that he hasn’t been developed as ODI player. In this series he faced 49 balls and scored only 22 runs. The decision of making him a captain was premature. In his 20 matches captaining the side, Pakistan has lost 12.

We're making emotional decisions in trying to make bad decisions look good. People have to shape up or be shipped out. Effective man-management is vital and the living legend Waqar Younis is missing out on that aspect. We have yet to find a right combination, or any combination that inspires confidence in the limited-overs format.  It is always the task of the head coach to manage the squad and find the right mix. Bob Woolmer was successful because of the personal relations he cultivated with the players. He would personally counsel players.  There was a reason why we were amongst the top teams during his reign.

There are no role-models in the crew who consistently hit the gaps and rotate strike regularly. No doubt, Hafeez has raised his game since he has been banned from bowling, but he’s still unable to finish. And unless he starts doing that he cannot become a world class player. In the era where average of 50, strike rate of 90 is the yardstick to define world-class batsmen, Pakistan fall well below par and have so for quite some time since the great Saeed Anwar. One of the most critical features of his game was his ability to keep the scoreboard ticking at will.

The game has since Saeed Anwar’s times changed dramatically. Teams have strong lads opening for them. Which reminds me where is Mukhtar Ahmed? On what grounds did the selection committee dropp this youngster. He was out-standing with 192 runs in 6 T20 Internationals with a SR of 143 last year whereas Hafeez had only 116 runs in 8 T20s before the New Zealand tour.

I’ve never seen Pakistan’s bowling attack as spiritless and diminished as it has been in the last one year! A case in point is in 18 years (1996-2014), Pakistan didn’t concede a single ODI hundred in less than 70 balls and in 2015 three batsmen, including a Bangladeshi player, scored hundreds against Pakistan in 70 balls or less. The problem with Pakistani bowlers is that they aren’t really thinking in the death overs. Usually they exhibit a beautiful display of fast bowling in the beginning and the middle overs but at the death they bowl ridiculously! If the current pacers are reluctant to learn then we’ve a bunch of talented players in the shape of Zia-ul-Haq, Mir Hamza, Sadaf Hussain and Mohmmad Talha who should be given a chance to express themselves. While we seem to be persisting with Rahat Ali what escapes me is why Sohail Khan wasn’t picked up for New Zealand tour. He’s super fit and has been consistently performing in domestic cricket. He’s kind of a pacer who boldly puts himself out there in the field like a fighter!

Be that as it may, players in the circuit will stand to learn a lot through PSL. The likes of Sir Viv Richards, Dean Jones and Andy Flower would prove to be great mentors for the boys. Even though there would be plenty to learn for the youngsters from these legends and all the overseas players, the question is, will they?