Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Chokers? I don't think so.

Osman Samiuddin and Niel Manthorp on Cricinfo have stated that the "Chokers" tag needs to be passed on from South Africa to Pakistan. I beg to differ.

Choking is an art that has been mastered by the Proteas over the last 16 years since their readmission to international cricket. Whether it was really choking at the final hurdle or fixed matches is still arguable, but for Pakistan to take that tag away from the South Africans will take a lot more doing than what happened last night.

Last night was the worst performance I have seen from this Pakistan team since Shoaib Malik became captain. The batsmen just couldn't handle the pressure once the Yo-Yos departed. Some played atrocious shots, while some succumbed to out of this world catching by the Proteas. The AB Devilliers catch to dismiss Afridi is probably one of the best I have ever seen, and will ever see. Despite that, losing a game when chasing 233, when you are 149-2 or even 202-5 is totally unacceptable, disappointing, and heartbreaking for a Pakistani fan. 20 runs off 5 overs with 5 wickets left is something that my grandparents and their grandparents could have finished off with their eyes closed.

One of the 2 Yo-Yo's should have stayed on till the end, something Inzi would have done batting left handed! I'll assess the players' performance in another post, but my point here is that Pakistan played as they always have - in complete unpredictable fashion. Blowing HOT one day and COLD the other, and in this case HOT for 90 overs and COLD for 10. Thats how Pakistan has been for a long time and if thats what defines choking, then Pakistan have been chokers forever.

However, I think choking refers to when a team does brilliantly well throughout a series or tournament, only to lose that one game that would have mattered - not once but consistently. That is and will remain to be South Africa - the last time they did this was last month in the 20-20 world cup in the match against India. Pakistan, on the other hand, is and will probably always remain the fickle and unpredictable side that shows flashes of brilliance one day and complete mediocrity the other.

Make your pitch on this post...

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3 Pitched:

  1. NAzhar said...

    definitely agree....you can't apply that tag to a team who choked once....you got to earn it like the S.African cricket team has for so many years!

  2. Unknown said...

    I completely agree... no one chokes more than south africa... we saw it in the 20 20 cup when they couldnt even make 109

    Pakistan is unpredictable and thats because of lack of temperament.. succesive coaches have been unable to make the players realize that singles and a run per ball can be as effective as hitting a four and then wasting three balls.... We lack patienece and that is embodied by us as a nation also so u cant just blame the players... That is why i think whatmore would have been a much better coach than lawson cuz whatmore has a take no shit attitude which is what we require....

    we dont need coaches to tell our players how to bat or bowl.. we need a coach to help our players develop the temperament to handle pressure.

  3. Unknown said...

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