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Misbah’s incredible journey from losing at Eden Gardens to the No 1 test playing nation


Venue: Eden Garden, Final between two cricketing arch rivals, India and Pakistan. With Pakistan on a verge of winning bow while the bowl was in the hands of Joginder Sharma an inexperienced bowler, he bowled and Misbah the most experienced of the Pakistanis played a lofted shot which was caught by S. Sreeshant and India lifted the world title for the first time.

Misbah had mistakenly chosen the wrong shot and Pakistan lost its shot towards the world title by an inch. They say the darkest hour is right before the dawn. This saying is pretty much true with respect to current Pakistani side who sits currently at the no 1 title in test cricket. When Misbah-Ul-Haq took over captaincy for Pakistan for the first time things were pretty out of order and the team looked scattered.

Teams were not ready to play cricket with Pakistan on their home soil and one feared that Pakistan would lose its test match playing nation status with its disappointing performances. Match fixing scandal had added to their misery and Pakistan was looking like moving in only one downward direction. With a 36 year old man taking the captaincy role with only 19 test match experience prior it looked that it was all over for Pakistan cricket.

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And here we are six years later with Pakistan right at the top with Misbah leading from the front. What an amazing journey he and Pakistan has had in the last six years and surely the credit goes to Misbah for this. Pakistani cricketers are known for being hot headed but in Misbah they found a cool headed captain who would lead them to unimaginable heights. He is no genius but it’s his captaincy abilities and backing of the players in the national team that has paid off for him.

Misbah had his share of criticism as well, he was trolled for slow bating and odd style of captaincy, some of them also wanted another players to take over from him but he went on with his abilities and also the team crept up the rankings towards the top spot. On becoming the top team, Pakistan captain Misbah-Ul-Haq said, becoming the number one test side in the ICC Rankings is like winning the World Cup.

Without playing in the home condition and reaching such heights is indeed commendable for Pakistan. This would surely go as the best story in the history of cricket for the past few decades. We haven’t seen Pakistan go down with the number of issues they had in the past and this is indeed brilliant news for all cricket fan’s and Pakistan supporters.

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While Misbah has also succeeded with the bat – he has 3626 runs at an average of 54 since he took over as skipper – the superstar with the bat since 2010 has been Younis Khan. He averages a touch under 60 in that period with 4196 runs and 16 hundreds. Bowlers also did their part with Yasir and Ajmal taking 95 victims amongst themselves. Seamers like Wahab Riaz, Rahat Ali and Junaid Khan have all came in rescue for the team from time to time.

But this is a team that is created in the image of its captain and he deserves most of the plaudits.

Well played Pakistan, you have done it the hard way and came so long.

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