Sunday, June 7, 2009

England is Through, Pakistan on Possible Flight Home

After the Dutch victory over England, the world was busy talking about how England was going out of its home world cup within 3 days.

I talked about that too, but I was more concerned with Pakistan being jittery because of the Dutch win.

I said they would have been shitting bricks. And for good reason.

I expected England to come hard at Pakistan, and they did.

Wright, KP, Shah took the game away from Pakistan within the first 10 overs.

On top, Pakistan helped them with abysmal bowling with the new ball (Yasir Arafat), sloppy fielding, and dropped catches.

Pakistan did the English a lot of favours as if saying, "Thank you for letting us play in your country, we can't let you get dumped from the cup".

When it came to batting, the Pakistanis refused to take singles, tried to hit every ball to the boundary, and failed miserably.

Pathetic, lacklustre, abysmal, atrocious are not harsh enough for the kind of performance Pakistan put in.

Now the situation is such that Pakistan not only have to beat Netherlands, they have to make sure that they do so with a margin to get their net run rate above Netherlands' in order to qualify for the Super 8s.

England have nothing to worry about anymore. They have the best NRR in the Group. Even if Pakistan beat Netherlands, England's NRR will remain above that of the Dutch.

Hence, England is through!

Its going to be a fight between the Dutch and Pakistan.

And its Pakistan, the team I called the favorites, that are facing an exit from the ICC World Twenty20!

How this world cup is turning everything upside down.

Make your pitch on this post...

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62 Pitched:

  1. LiB said...

    I am numb at the moment.. there are soo many questions, so many thoughts, so many exaclamation marks that i just dont know what to say....

    and i will leave it at that!

    i want to take the next flight to london and bitchslap the person(s) who at the moment are the decision makers in the team!

  2. khansahab said...

    I said before that the team has an agenda against Fawad Alam. To say that Fawad is not getting a chance because of Younis Khan's "seniority based selection" is seriously dumbing it down.

    If Younis Khan wanted seniority based selection then Shahzaib wouldn't have replaced Butt and Aamer wouldn't have replaced Tanvir.

    Either Akmal needs to open with Butt, or Malik needs to be replaced with Fawad Alam. This is a clear case of serious discrimination against a deserving player. If Fawad Alam is treated the same way as Asim Kamal, it will be the country's loss so whoever is responsible should think about the country and nothing else and promote people on the basis of merit.

  3. farooq syed said...

    it sucks to be a fan of this team, poor performance, they didnt even show any intent
    i hate to say this but the team management is showing big signs of bias against players from karachi.. fawad alam for the strangest reasons continues to warm the benches, whereas salman butt who cant do jack in t 20 continues to play.. i am pretty sure it will rain and the team will be taking an early flight

  4. SledgeHammer said...

    It will actually be very unfortunate if Netherlands are kicked out by Pakistan. Pakistan have shown no reason to stay in there. Neither in the warmups, nor today.

    Horrific strategy. No drive to win. Undeserving team.

    Naturally I would be happy if Pakistan go through. But won't be disappointed if they don't. It will just meet my expectations, and would be good for the associate world.

  5. LiB said...

    what will pakistan have to do to up there NRR from -2.40 to squeeze to the next round?

    whatever it is, i dont see it happenning! not with younis khan at the helm and butt and ahmed shahzad opening!

    and i dont see the same team that played against Australia last month... no energy whatsoever in the team..its like they are robots and just going through the motions...

  6. Rayden said...

    Surprising result today. Must say England played really well. I think Pak still has it in them to go through to the next round. They should know what kind of run / over difference the need in the next match and go for it.

    I am surprised to see Akmal not opening. Also butt keeps trying to hit the ball on the offside so its getting easy to bowl to him. He needs more shots all around the wicket. Also whats wrong with Afridi's batting??

  7. The Wizard said...

    does anyone know what level of victory margin pakistan needs against netherlands to go through? possibly both options batting first or second?

  8. Gaurav Sethi said...

    This is what Q told me:

    "We have to beat Netherlands by 25 runs or more to qualify.. beating them by 24 runs or less will not do it. 25 or more."

    Think you'll make it, and like the Poms you'll figure out selections by the 2nd game.

    Warne's been on the phone with Younis, and Tanvir will play.

  9. achettup said...

    Thats quite right NC, they need to win by 25 if they bat first. Batting second it isn't beyond their reach either, they just need to get to the target between overs 15-17, which a full member should do against minnows.
    Q, what is it with Misbah and Younis Khan batting so low down the batting order? Afridi is best played at number 7 or 8 until he finds some form.

  10. Unknown said...

    Pakistan have to win by at least 60 runs on Tuesday,I read some of the comments that Younis made,unprofessional why can't our captains say we played like shit and deserved to lose.I am sorry but Ya sir Arafat is a bits and pieces player not an opening bowler.

  11. Viswanathan said...

    Pakistan will beat Netherlands, but the net run rate will take some doing.

  12. Chullanz said...

    KP proved he can play T20 as well. luke wright also proved he can score runs. Above all england proved they can win T20 matches. All these came in the expense of pak.
    sledge I completely agree with you.
    But this gives us a chance to see the mouth watering clash.Ind Vs Pak in super8 stage itself. dont know whether i.c.c theirselves penned this script no offense pls

  13. SledgeHammer said...

    @chullanz: Pak will not play India in the Super-8. If Pak make it through, they will not be pitted in the same sub-group as India.

    They could meet them in the semis or the final. But more likely they'll watch them on their TVs from back home.

  14. Late Inswing said...

    Puzzling team selection, questionable bowling tactics and sloppy fielding to top it.
    The supporters who turned out in huge numbers desreved a better performance.

    Wasim Akram said they should have batted on winning the toss.Made sense that - England are under pressure to remain in the tournament. Get 180 on a good track and put them under pump.No?

    Younis said he has two spinners. Woulndt he be better off making last use of that strip?

    Much as I like Salman Butt, he is a misfit in T20s - a younger, left handed VVS - grace, timing, wrists and all
    but you need guys who can give it a whack in the top 6.Why Akmal is not opening beats me.

    Yasir Arafat bowling the first over? Keep Gul for the end by all means, but get in Tanvir in the 11. Even if they make the 8's (which they shoudl fancy to, beating Netherlands Arafat would not match up against McCullum, Gayle and others. I differ with you only in the matter of Tanvir's bowling slot. He is a better bet at taking the new ball along with young Amir.

    Misbah - so low down. Got to question this. He might get out in odd ways, but he is still their best bet. Misbah AFTER Afridi irks me.

    All said and done, well played KP and England in a must-win situation. Like Gayle,the star player stepped up when it mattered. Full marks to Luke Wright too on his all round support and Stuart Broad for his professionalism.

  15. adverbin said...

    Did Younis really say that since T20 is more entertainment than cricket a loss is not impotant? (or something to that effect).
    This attitude horrified me more than selection blunders/inept performance. This is certainly not a Pakistani attitude but an English one.

  16. Fark said...

    Hi Q,

    Definitely echoing some of the comments on here. The decision to chase, as well as the batting order is a little baffling.

    Butt, I've always felt, is a great grafter, and still needs a little time. Akmal should have definitely opened to ease the pressure off him to let him play a good anchor innings (similar to Kallis, Gambhir ).

    Misbah should definitely be the two-down and not any lower. It doesn't make sense otherwise. He needs a little bit of time to settle in (an over or so), after which he almost always figures out how to pace the innings according to the situation (that's his biggest strength). Sending him so low down the order is a complete waste of his talent and skills.

    They need someone other than Arafat to support the hardworking Gul, who really bowls some tremendous yorkers. Quite an uncanny talent.

    They need a couple of folks to step up and play the roles similar to what Mohammed Yousif , Abdul Razzaq used to play. Beating Holland by a fairly big margin is tough, but Pakistan is capable of giving such a beat-down.


  17. Unknown said...

    I usually am a silent reader on this blog, but yesterday's performance has prompted me to comment. I must say I agree with the comments by most on this thread.

    I would like to comment on Younis's (uninspiring) captaincy. The last two matches that Pakistan have lost, the results have a lot to do with Younis's captaincy, in my opinion.

    His insistence to opening the bowling with Yasir Arafat - I know he has more experience of English conditions - but he is NOT an opening bowler. Period!

    Not playing with Sohail Tanvir, I don't know, he may not be himself lately, but he played better than the rest in the match against India. He still is a match winning bowler, and is very adept for the T20 format.

    Playing Salman Butt was another big mistake. He is a very good batsmen, but he's just not good for T20. Players like Fawad Alam are sitting on the bench, I really don't understand why.

    Letting himself in (instead of Misbah) when they lost two wickets in quick succession. Sending Afridi before Misbah, bowling Malik before Afridi or Ajmal were all wrong decisions!

    I just don't see this team doing anything great. The body language is not there, there is no self belief and somehow feels like they just don't want to win. I so want a miracle to happen, but I don't think this team has it in them.

  18. Anonymous said...

    Pakistan will not take a flight back home!!They will make it to the super 8's and probably to the semis and then into the finals!!!Hope must never be lost!!!
    We have to defeat the dutch just by a margin of 25 runs!
    Pakistan Zindabad!!!
    Fuck the rest!

  19. raj said...

    I am sad this means that England are through - I mean, I want both Holland and Pakistan in next round :-(.
    Frustrating team - this Pakistani cricket team.

  20. Q said...

    Morning people.. I just disappeared for some time to drown my sorrows :-)

    Firstly, regarding the net run rate..

    Its quite simple really.. beat them by 25 runs or chase the target with 3 overs to spare.

    I read a comment that we need to beat them by 60 runs - not true. Only 25.

    But the question is, do we deserve too?

  21. Q said...


    Hahah.. i know the feeling.. which is also why I write this post and then got lost in my thoughts..

  22. Q said...

    Khansahab, I don't get it. What is it that they have against Fawad? Its totally absurd!

    I agree abt Akmal opening..

    Also Misbah coming it 7 makes no sense!

  23. Q said...


    If it rains, then we r surely out!

    I don't get the bias man.. understanding these guys is beyond logic.

  24. Q said...


    I agree. Its manageable the run rate and all, but do we deserve it?

    The way we played, I hate to say it, but no.

  25. Q said...


    I answered the NRR bit. Its manageable.

    Ahmed may be fine at the top.. but we need to get rid of Butt.. he wastes 3 deliveries and then hits a 4.. and after hitting a few he gets out.. doesnt make his partner play, doesnt run, no singles, nothing!

    Akmal just stood at the non strikers end for 2 overs!

  26. Q said...


    Shocking more than surprising :-)

    Butt can't bat. Period.

    Afridi, I don't understand. He has lost his big hitting ways. Even in the innings against Australia in Dubai, they were good innings, but no big sixes.

    Akmal needs to open, yes.

  27. Q said...


    Win by 25 runs or chase with 3 overs to spare :-)

    And welcome to the blog.

  28. Q said...


    Thanks for that..

    Wonder if Younis understand what Warne bhai says..

  29. Q said...


    Their strategy beats me man.. Misbah makes no sense at 7.. With Akmal going up Younis and misbah will be pushed down, but they can restore the order by having Akmal open but they;re resisting from that. I don't get it.

  30. Q said...


    not 60, only 25.

    Younis said stuff abt 20-20 not being serious cricket. Pathetic! He was singing a different tune a few days back.

    Welcome to well pitched :-)

  31. Q said...


    The NRR is actually manageable..

  32. Q said...


    If Pakistan qualify, it doesn't matter where they stand in their group, they will not be in the same pool as India in the super 8s.

    The super 8 pools have been pre-decided on seedings.

  33. Q said...

    Lare Inswing,

    Those questions are bothering every single Pakistan fan right now.

    Now I wonder that if we can see all these things wrong with the team combination and the line-ups, why can't the team management?

    As for England.. I said they were gonna come hard and they did! They got their team right and they showed how badly they wanted it.

    And Pakistna let them.

  34. Q said...


    Yep Younis said that in the press conference. I couldn't believe it myself.

    Totally unprofessional and not required. I think he's preparing everyone for the exit before the Super 8s.

    There could be no other reason cos he was singing a completely different tune a few days back.

  35. Q said...


    I agree.. Butt should never have played, Akmal should have opened, Arafat should not have had the new ball, Misbah should have batted at 6 at the most..

    If u read my 9-point strategy in the previous post, u'll see that Pakistan did nothing similar to that.

    If they did, they might have won!

  36. Q said...

    Networking junkie,

    Thank u for your comments.

    I agree with u completely. All those decisions made no sense. Younis seems lost in his own world and the warm ups didn't make them realize a thing.

    I do hope that they get it right against the Dutch and make it to the super 8s.. the problem though is what happens when they come against the stronger teams in the next round? The same blunders will continue.

  37. Q said...


    Thats a lot of optimism :-)

  38. Q said...


    Extremely frustrating!

    They used to be unpredictable, but now they are just predictably frustrating!!

    England are surely through and Pak may have to break some Dutch hearts.. poor things.

  39. Q said...

    I hope I responded to everyone :-)

  40. raj said...

    Q, I wouldnt say Pak dont deserve to be through. Given their ways, they might still turn on the screws in the next round. So, we need to have them in the next round. For all the 'Dutch courage' and 'English grit', it is 'Pakistani flair' that is needed in the second round in the bigger context.I'd have preferred if DC and PF kicked out EG but now looks like I'd have to choose between DC and PF - with a heavy heart, I choose to sacrifice the DC and take PF!

  41. Q said...


    I'm not too sure if Pakistan's flair still exists. The players don't look interested at all.

    If we play like we have in the warm ups and against England and then have the attitude that Younis has (see next post) then I don't think we deserve to qualify.

  42. Q said...

    For all of you,

    I had this up yesterday:

    Looking back, Pakistan did not follow even 1 of those points! Not even 1.

  43. Wasim said...

    I knew it that Pakistan will lose from England the moment England lost to the Dutch but I was certain that Younis will learn from his mistakes and will try to strengthen batting by playing Fawad Alam and will shuffle the batting order.

    But I guess Younis Khan has proved everybody wrong he doesn't have the leadership qualities and he is too stubborn to learn from his own mistakes.

    This is what we deserved because when Malik was winning matches for Pakistan we wanted him to win 100% matches and we accused him of being conniving against the underperforming senior players now I guess he was right and he was a more smarter captain than Younis Khan.

    Playing Misbah so low down the order is criminal.

    Pakistan if they play to their potential and if Younis Khan plays Fawad and includes Rao Iftikhar in place of Yasir Arafat and shuffles the batting order I don't see a reason why they can't beat the Dutch by 25 runs.

  44. Wasim said...

    Qadir has resigned and I think it is time that Aaqib Javed should step down also he has done nothing to imrove the bowlers.

  45. Q said...


    I agree abt Younis.. Malik wasn't being disrespectful to seniors, he was just trying make "his" men play.. he was just not strong enough to garner support..

    Younis said he doesn't want to be a "dummy" captain but so far he has been one.. I hope he can set things right quickly.

    I wonder if Qadir resigned because of the loss.. reports say its cos of an argument over the Pakistan A squad..

  46. khansahab said...

    Younis Khan and Ijaz Butt should resign. Qadir was OK, he shouldn't have resigned. I did not agree with Qadir's selection all the time but he has a good cricketing mind and he knows how to manage people. Remember how he gave the idea of having specialist teams for T20 and Test cricket? Pakistan needs that kind of out of the box solutions.

    The main culprit is Younis Khan.

    I don't care so much about team selection and batting order, but the captain controls the 11 players on the field. They are capable of winning, but they have a poor leader.

    He is capable but he is taking the game too lightly. In Australia or England a captain like that would be sacked immediately but in Pakistan there is mafia culture and saabgiri.

    I don't like Malik and this is not to say Malik was a good captain, but Malik is a better captain than Younis.

  47. Q said...


    I agree abt Malik being the better captain.. Younis has just played into the hands of politics when he was the one man who could have taken pakistan out of it and above it..

  48. Wasim said...


    The same seniors are now in control, and what are they delivering, you cannot reward underperformance and mutiny. That was all BS.

  49. Wasim said...

    Qadir was not even willing to select Saeed Ajmal. I think he created a serious handicap by selecting Ahmad Shehzad and Salman Butt for this format. He had an agenda against Nasir Jamshed.

    I don't know the whole situation is a mess too much dirty politics being played.

    It's not a guarantee that Fawad Alam will score as other players with good domestic records have failed, but Younis should have figured it out that Salman Butt and Ahmed Shehzad can't hit big hits so he should have played Fawad, we all know that he has the ability to hit cleanly and is also an excellent fielder so his exclusion so far baffles my mind.

  50. Q said...

    Under Malik there was Malik vs Seniors politics..

    Under Younis its divided in a bigger way..

    Afridi, Misbah, Gul, Fawad, Tanvir on one end...

    There are 2 divided groups and its quite apparent.. I witnessed it during the Dubai series as well.

  51. Wasim said...

    Gul in the other camp? As far I know he is YK's best friend in the team.

  52. Q said...

    That is the bigger surprise Wasim.. I didn't think it was possible but Gul is firmly behind Afridi here..

    U can witness this whole group thing that I'm talking abt from the pictures I have up on FB..

    Afridi wants to be captain, its no secret.

  53. Wasim said...

    If this is the way these guys think they can become captain then I think they should be axed from the team forever.

  54. Q said...


    I agree.

    But then again all this is hearsay and rumours and some observation from my part.. I have no concrete proof or anything and could be wrong.. which is why I don't write abt all this..

    Who knows wat exactly is brewing in that camp.

    The other day I read reports of Younis and Intikhab not getting along..

    Today Qadir resigns..

    Ijaz Butt says Imran Nazir will never play for Pakistan...

    Strange politics man..

  55. Wasim said...

    That was the weirdest thing I ever heard.

    I mean a player won't play ever again because he hit his bat on the ground in anger when the same organization pardoned players who shoved bats in the face of fans or who hit their team mate with a bat. Quite hypocritical and strange.

  56. Q said...

    Haha.. I know Wasim.. really absurd..

    These admins are tearing apart Pak cricket.

  57. khansahab said...

    First thing, Younis should resign.

    Second, Ijaz Butt.

    The groupings I heard about were Younis, Gul, Afridi, Fawad and Shoaib Akhtar on one side and the rest on the other.

    Younis is not serious about captaincy. So he will not mind even if Afridi is competing with him. At the moment Younis is not concerned about anything.

    Geo Tv revealed Shoaib Akhtar has sources in Punjab government, which is why he has never been disciplined properly. Butt treated Nazir harshly.

    I don't think anyone has any agenda against Nasir Jamshed. Nasir has not been performing in domestic cricket for a while. Before the RBS Cup for 2 series he did not perform. And he keeps getting flu and malaria. Having said that neither Butt nor Shahzad performed in the RBS Cup and Jamshed would have been a better bet.

  58. Q said...

    Afridi, Gul, and Fawad are not with Younis.. if they were Fawad would have been playing.. the XI has been Younis's choice.

    Younis has the backing of Malik's groupies - Butt and Akmal.

    Anyhow, this is still speculation.. wat the reality is who knows.

    Shoaib Akhtar has always had the influence of the Govt on the PCB, which is why he has got away with so many things.

    I agree abt Nasir. But even Khalid may have been a better choice. Abdul Qadir selected him but Younis Khan, on Rashid Latif's advice, went for Shahzaib Hasan.

  59. JD said...

    i was an avid pakistan fan and i really wanna support pakistan, but supporting such a spineless bunch of oddjobs/bits n pieces cricketers is tuff. we need the sickos like akhtar, mohammed yousuf, razzaq, asif, saqi back in da rumble to ko the opposition. these battymen couldnt beat my gran at kickboxin. fukin bastards. let the pakis down 4 sho.

  60. Q said...


    Welcome to Well Pitched.

    Akhtar's and Saqi's careers are over.

    Asif could be back but I doubt he would come back at his best.

    Yousuf may be good for the tests and maybe ODIs..

    Razzak will be good for T20, and maybe ODIs..

    Instead of looking back I think we need to put faith in new fresh faces..

  61. Unknown said...

    U guys r un aware of what pakistan has got.....ABDUR RAZZAQ the clean hitter is back in the side and Iam quite sure with a group consisting of srilanka, newzealand and ireland pakistan are the most likely team to reach semis and may be FINAL..... ENGLAND had won the match due to good luck otherwise if paki' would had better in the field the story would had been different....but at the moment thank GOD pakistan lost at the hands of ENGLAND.... to be placed in a weak group like group F......

  62. Q said...


    Welcome to Well Pitched.

    I hope Razzaq gets there in time. And I hope he fires.

    One can never tell with Pak, but I did call them the favorites before the WC T20 began.

    As for Group F, even if we had beaten England we would have been in F because the Super 8 pools were decided on seedings.

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