Home > Features >

ICC Champions Trophy 2013: The difference between India and Pakistan

ICC Champions Trophy 2013: The difference between India and Pakistan

The true state of Pakistan’s batting now lies in front, as clear as the midsummer sky © Getty Images

By Zain Abid

The Champions Trophy 2013 was a debacle for Pakistan in every sense of the word. The team played three and lost all three — indeed, outclassed.

Sometimes unprecedented failure can do wonders.

Had Pakistan somehow bowled West Indies out before 170, as they were so close to doing so, and had the batsmen somehow chased down 235 even after losing nine wickets against South Africa, the team would have been in the semi-finals. Regardless of what would have happened after it, the nation would have given the boys a pat on their backs for showing tremendous fight and will power. Thank God that did not happen!

The true state of Pakistan’s batting now lies in front of us as clear as the midsummer sky.  Pakistan’s destroyer has been its batting, the failure of which during the Champions Trophy can be branched into three core issues:

The unavailability of good, quality batsmen

Consider this: How many batsmen from the current Pakistan team would make it to the Indian starting 11?
Take our two most relatively successful batsmen. Would they even make the cut? Would you choose Nasir Jamshed over Rohit Sharma or Ravindra Jadeja? Would you choose Misbah-ul-Haq over Virat Kohli, Suresh  Raina or MS Dhoni?

I seriously doubt it. It speaks volumes about the batting talent that Pakistan have to offer.

A lot has been said about Kamran Akmal not deserving a place in the batting line-up. The bitter truth is Pakistan does not have a better wicketkeeper-batsman than him. Its supply talent is choked.

The absence of international cricket in Pakistan has hurt its cricket. Slowly, but surely, the galli cricket tradition is also disappearing. It is naive to deny it. Pakistan are just not selecting good enough players anymore. The nation’s domestic cricket is in shambles and its college and school cricket withering.

The Pakistan Cricket Board needs to wake up and smell the coffee.

The selection

I do not know what the selectors were thinking while penning the team for the Champions Trophy.

Imran Farhat had a decent series against South Africa, but he failed miserably in the two games against Ireland. What was the need of another opener, who had been tried and tested four times, when we already had Jamshed, Mohammad Hafeez and Akmal? 

If the selectors wanted to play Akmal down the order and needed another opener, Ahmed Shehzad or Shahzaib Hasan were all reasonably viable options.

Shoaib Malik’s last batting milestone was a century against India in September, 2009. Four years down the line, he has not had a single half-century to his name in the One-Day International (ODI) format. And Pakistan seldom uses him as a bowler. One wonders why he still made the cut.

There was not a single dynamic pinch-hitter in the team. No Hammad Azam, no Shahid Afridi, no Umar Akmal and no Abdul Razzaq. If Afridi, Razzaq and Umar Akmal needed to be dropped, they needed to have been replaced by effective pinch-hitters.

The management absurdly backed the young Umar Amin to bat at No 7, where he isn’t accustomed to, even in First-Class cricket. Amin is a proper top-order batsman, a steady timer of the ball; he is not a big hitter.

The captaincy

Personal performances aside, Misbah has failed to inspire the team. The difference between Pakistan’s approach and that of the Indian team was apparent. The Pakistan batsmen bat to save their wickets, whereas Indian batsmen bat to score runs. Pakistan are batting with the mindset of trying to stay at the crease long enough for the runs to magically come by.

Misbah needs to be more proactive. He needs to be more attacking. He needs to instill confidence in the team. The players need to be attacking, not reckless. There’s a fine line between the two, and playing at the top-most competitive level, you expect the players to realise what that line is.

Totals of 170 runs, 167 runs and 165 runs prove that Pakistan’s batsmen failed to score more than 170 on dry wickets. This is a country that has produced legendary batsmen like Zaheer Abbas, Javed Miandad,  Inzamam-ul-Haq and Saeed Anwar, so one cannot write off Pakistan as a country that only produces fast bowlers and the occasional exceptional spinner.

(Zain Abid is currently studying at Lahore University of Management Sciences. The above article has been reproduced with permission from http://tribune.com.pk/)
 

India tour of England 2014

Jul 27, 2014 (15:30 IST)   at Southampton

Pakistan tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Aug 6, 2014 (10:00 IST)   at Galle

India tour of England 2014

Aug 7, 2014 (15:30 IST)   at Manchester

South Africa in Zimbabwe, 2014

Aug 9, 2014 (13:30 IST)   at Harare

Pakistan tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Aug 14, 2014 (10:00 IST)   at Colombo

More

Afghanistan tour of Zimbabwe, 2014

Jul 24, 2014  at Bulawayo

Afghanistan won by 100 runs

South Africa tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Jul 24, 2014  at Colombo

Match drawn

Afghanistan tour of Zimbabwe, 2014

Jul 22, 2014  at Bulawayo

Afghanistan won by 2 wkts

Afghanistan tour of Zimbabwe, 2014

Jul 20, 2014  at Bulawayo

Zimbabwe won by 8 wkts

Afghanistan tour of Zimbabwe, 2014

Jul 18, 2014  at Bulawayo

Zimbabwe won by 6 wkts

Photos

India vs England 2014, 3rd Test

Videos

Shaun Udal on India vs England 3rd Test

South Africa bat out Day 5 against Sri Lanka to win series 1-0; move to No 1 in ICC rankings

India vs England Live Cricket Score 3rd Test Day 2 at Southampton: Moeen Ali falls after Ian Bell’s century

12 little-known facts about Garry Sobers

Pankaj Singh and other Test cricketers from Rajasthan

Mike Griffith: My choice of Mike Gatting as President of MCC was all about timing

Alastair Cook England England vs India England vs India 2014 India India tour of England 2014 India vs England India vs England 2014 South Africa South Africa tour of Sri Lanka 2014 South Africa vs Sri Lanka South Africa vs Sri Lanka 2014 Sri Lanka Sri Lanka vs South Africa Sri Lanka vs South Africa 2014

Ian Bell’s century against India marks return of another England senior batsman to form

Vernon Philander now holds world record for facing most balls in 4th innings without being dismissed

Misbah-ul-Haq to continue Pakistan captain till ICC World Cup 2015

Pakistan Cricket Board accpets Saleem Malik’s appeal; to release former cricketer’s money

India vs England 2014, 3rd Test at Southampton: Moeen Ali dismissed by short ball again

Sourav Ganguly – Jagmohan Dalmiya saga: A timeline

India vs England 2014, 3rd Test at Southampton: Alastair Cook’s innings could be a turning point for England’s fortunes

Michael Holding’s take on Ishant Sharma bowling from Pavilion End — problems with expert opinions

India vs England 2014 3rd Test at Southampton stats highlights: Day 1

India vs England 2014, 3rd Test at Southampton: Gary Ballance fills in the void left by Jonathan Trott

Fan of the Day

Fan Cricket

Fan Cricket

11 Posts | 2 Fans

Brazil vs Netherlands, 3rd place Fifa World Cup 2014 match Video Highlights

England lose Joe Root, but Ian Bell ensures advantage against India on Day 2 of 3rd Test at Southampton

Sourav Ganguly – Jagmohan Dalmiya saga: A timeline

Salman Khan mania grips the nation: Here are some fan moments that will surprise you – View pics!

Yeh Hai Mohabbatein: Raman and Ishita’s new fight!

Amazon.com offers 3D-printing to customize various products

OnePlus One headed to India: Here’s why it is a flagship killer

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here