Pakistan’s shocking defeat in the third and final match of the Twenty20 series against England can be safely attributed to the hopeless captaincy and extremely poor batting performance of skipper Misbah-ul-Haq. The victory target of 130 runs was surely within the reach of our team, but he put the team on defensive for no tangible reasons. Misbah batted in a highly passive manner neither playing any bold strokes himself nor instructing his co-batsmen to do so. With 76 for 3 our team was heading for a glorious victory, but to our dismay skipper Misbah destroyed the golden chance by batting at the snail’s pace. The team reached a stage when Pakistan needed 22 runs in 18 balls with six wickets in hand. Why were the six players kept idle in the dressing room?

The skipper should have utilised their services by adopting the policy of ‘hit out and get out’ to achieve the well needed victory. The miserable batting posture brought the team to last over with 13 runs required for victory. This was not a difficult target either because on many previous occasions the teams had scored around 20 runs in the last over. Our boys managed to score only eight runs thus losing the match by five runs with still four wickets in hand. Keeping a star batsman like Shahid Afridi too low in the batting order was another folly.

The defeat was a case of deplorable performance by skipper Misbah-ul-Haq. Pakistan lost the second match of the series also for similar reasons. The team batted in the ‘Test match style’ and not the ‘limited over match style’. Let me also mention that Pakistan lost to India in the semi-finals of the World Cup at Mohali, on account of similarly passive batting by Misbah. To save the country from further embarrassments, Misbah deserves to be shown the door.

RAFI NASIM,

Lahore, February 29.