Misbah urges PCB to identify new skipper

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Pakistan Test captain Misbah-ul-Haq has urged the national selectors to consider starting the search for his replacement, and threw the names of Umar Akmal and Azhar Ali into the ring as his candidates.

Pakistan Test captain Misbah-ul-Haq has urged the national selectors to consider starting the search for his replacement, and threw the names of Umar Akmal and Azhar Ali into the ring as his candidates.

Misbah recently turned 40 and while he is still enjoying his career and leading the side, he doesn't want the team to be caught out when he steps down. He feels Azhar and Umar have the potential to lead the side well, as long as they are trained properly.

Misbah said: "It is important for the board to decide who they want as captain. They should start grooming and giving them the confidence. To me there are lots of players who could be given the captaincy… like Azhar Ali and Umar Akmal.

"Both are doing captaincy (in domestic cricket) and I think when they get some experience you can safely hand them the responsibility.

"I don't think there is any problem as we have players who can take over the responsibility. All the youngsters understand the game and are doing the hard work and performing but you will take some time, one-two years.

"Both [Akmal and Azhar] have cricketing sense and that's what you need in the future."

Of the training camp in Lahore, which has had a big focus on fitness, Misbah felt his side would be better technically as a result of the emphasis on conditioning, saying that in the long run they would see the effects.

He said: "You might not get an immediate result. However, each player knows it has enhanced endurance. Your base is on your fitness in any sport and when you are fit you have better performance in all the three departments.

"Especially in such heat when you push yourself you increase your endurance, your strength is improved and you get improved in all the departments.

"The biggest motivation is your passion about this game. If you don't have passion then you just spend time and you don't enjoy. When you have passion you compete with others and you try to be the best.

"Not only me the youngsters have very good fitness and all the senior players have worked hard and tried to push themselves. In future if we continue to push, our fielding level will increase automatically. In batting and bowling when your fitness is good it automatically improves too."

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