Misbah: Pakistan are on track to be number one in T20 cricket again


Pakistan coach Misbah-Ul-Haq is confident that his team are on the right track in T20I cricket having slipped from the number one ranking under his direction.

Misbah stopped short of accepting responsibility for the decline, insisting the team had begun its slide before he took over.

Pakistan already on a losing streak

The Pakistan mentor said that the side he inherited was already on a ‘losing streak’.

“Pakistan were No.1 but if you recall the time I took over they were already on a losing streak,” Misbah said during a video press conference.

“They lost in South Africa and one T20I against England. 

“So they had already started to go down a bit and we all have an idea why was it. 

“That was because some of our players were out of form collectively – Fakhar Zaman, Shadab Khan, Hasan Ali – those who were main the contributors. 

“So there was a sudden dip, but we are trying to take them to the same place (being number one). With the recent series [in England], it’s evident that the team is in the making and going forward you will see better performances.”

Misbah backs batting power

Pakistan have been labelled a ‘bowling team’ in the format with some suggesting that the team need their bowlers to make up for a perceived lack of strike power among the batsmen. Misbah feels that this notion is way off base as demonstrated by his side’s batting in England.

“The sort of cricket we are playing right now is exactly what we are looking at,” he said. 

“Especially in T20 cricket there were questions about not having enough firepower and not matching the level of cricket being played in the world. But scoring 190 plus twice against England in English conditions is a sign that we are heading in the right direction.”

Misbah shares the belief of Waqar Younis that the side’s biggest weakness right now is the inexperience of the bowling attack.

“It [performance] needs to be improved but we are going towards it, similarly in Test cricket; all we just have to do is show more consistency. We have a young lot of fast bowlers and with time, they will gain experience from every game. 

“There is a room for improvement, and you always think that whatever you have done, you have the capacity to do better.

“The patience is the key with the inexperienced bowling line. You play any sports to win and that’s what we want as well. We are working on technical, tactical aspects but you need some time. They are young bowlers. There is a process for them to get mature. Our overall vision is to go towards youngsters, get long-term solutions, develop our team for a longer period of time, get the right resources and invest in them. With the changes in Pakistan, the desired results might not the one we are expecting but I am satisfied with the process and we are heading in the right direction.”

Pakistan shared their recent T20I series with England 1-1, winning the final match after going 1-0 in match two with the opening game washed out.