ICC Champions trophy 2013: We were too defensive and failed to apply ourselves, says disappointed Misbah-ul-Haq

Except for Misbah-ul-Haq (aove) and Nasir Jamshed, none of the other batsmen made an impact in the Pakistan batting © Getty Images

Karachi: Jun 11, 2013

Skipper Misbah-ul-Haq did not mince words to criticise his misfiring batsmen as Pakistan suffered their second successive defeat in the ICC Champions Trophy 2013 against South Africa, which has severely dented their chances of making the semifinals.

Having lost their tournament opener to the West Indies, Pakistan went down to South Africa by 67 runs in Birmingham on Monday night. They now face arch-rivals India in the must-win game on Saturday.

“I don’t know what is wrong but the batsmen are not justifying their places in the team and it is hard on the bowlers who have done a good job so far,” said a disappointed Misbah.

“I was not expecting this sort of performance because the batsmen had done well in the warm-up games in the run up to the tournament but they have just not clicked. Not being able to score even 200 in both matches is terribly disappointing,” he added.

Misbah said there were no demons in the Edgbaston pitch and the batsmen needed to apply themselves patiently.

“We just didn’t apply ourselves and went into too defensive frame of mind,” he said.

The 39-year-old captain, however, said that despite the two defeats and slim chances of qualifying for the semifinals, Pakistan would remain focused for their June 15 game against India.

“That game is very important for us now. I know the Pakistani community in England is terribly disappointed with our show but we need to now look ahead and try to give our best against the Indians who are an in-form side in the tournament,” he said.

“Against India, I know we have the capability to win the match and I am sure the batsmen would also want to make amends for what has happened so far in the event,” he added.

Misbah said he was encouraged by the form of his bowlers, who had restricted two strong teams from opening up.

Meanwhile, some of the Pakistani supporters in Birmingham vent their anger on players when they were coming out of the stadium.

“Some of the fans used offensive language and jeered players in particular and demanded changes in the team something that has never happened before in Birmingham which has a large Pakistani community,” a Pakistani channel reported.