Archive for November, 2013

The Battle Of Karbala - Muharram

Why Muharram is the chosen one? It is because Hussain (R.A.), grandson of Muhammad (S.A.W.), was martyred in the Battle of Karbala. The battle was fought between Yazid of Umayyad and Hussain of Banu Hashim. Shias commemorate the battle and heavily mourn on martyrdom of Hussain (R.A.). So you expect more clashes and bashes in Muharram. But to whom you blame? Sunnis or Shias? Both of them or none of them?

Being Sunni, I have no business with Shias but what subjects both communities to boil each other’s blood and hear insults to the prophets, caliphs and wives of Muhammad (S.A.W.) from one side? The answer lies precisely towards the dirty politics of the West. Remember the 1979 Shia Revolution in Tehran? When Pahlavi dynasty met an end after Mohammad Raza Shah Pahlavi left Iran in Jan.1979 defeated by the demonstrators and followers of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. If anyone remembers, Pahlavi dynasty was backed by United States. Khomeini arrived Iran on Air France Boeing 747 the very next month with grand return and welcomed by his millions of supporters.

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Since then, sectarian tensions began to boil in South Asia and Gulf countries. The impact was huge and critical. In non-Muslim world, Islamic ideologies and revolution were on heavy talks. Khomeini was the name to whom the world began thinking that the super-power of world control might lose balance under the cradle of attorney since Hitler’s impact. With the overthrow of monarchies, it was a heavy alarm for fellow neighbors where Sunnis were/are dominating and Shias were/are in minorities. Entered USSR and Afghan war began. US-backed Osama bin Laden was their Uncle Sam in Afghanistan. Followed Iran-Iraq war, tag-team partners in this war directly/indirectly were Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, France, UK, USSR and with no surprise United States. Oil became a ‘mermaid on a shore’, swam by all infected and addicted countries governed and schemed by the masters from the West.

Sectarian politics did built tensions and confrontations in Pakistan as yearly casualties were immense. Never tolerable, extremist groups did target the places of worships in order to bring the heated battle back on track. Last decade met more severe blood-bargaining clashes after US-invasion of Iraq and disappearance of Saddam Hussain in 2003. That was where political Sunni-Shia clashes re-awoke. King Abdullah II of Jordan quoted, “If pro-Iran parties or politicians dominate the new Iraqi government, a new ‘crescent’ of dominant Shia movements or governments stretching from Iran to Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon, could emerge.”

So my take is that Iraq invasion is where in 21st century, Sunni-Shia wrestle mania began and political conspiracy let to other countries to flame fire between the two. The very same year, Shia cleric Yasser Al-Habib of Kuwait was arrested months later and sentenced to one year’s imprisonment by the Kuwaiti government on charges of cursing Abu Bakr (R.A.), Umar (R.A.), and Ayesha (R.A.). Seven years later in 2010, his citizenship was revoked by the Kuwaiti government when he brought huge Sunni-Shia outcry by calling Ayesha (R.A.) as ‘Enemy of God’.

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Sectarian political unrest spread to Bahrain, Lebanon, Yemen and now Syria. And now the understanding is that killing each other in the name of Islam will down pardon the consequences. Mourning turns into frowning; and sponsors and agents of the riots are enjoying the overwhelming corruption of sectarian unrest.

Demographically, Shias in Pakistan’s 180-million-population are mere 20%. Many prominent figures in this country follow Shia faith. Political biggies like Mohammad Ali Bogra, Khawaja Nazimuddin, Haider Abbas Rizvi, Faisal Saleh Hayat, Faisal Raza Abidi, Zulfiqar Mirza, Qaim Ali Shah; and artists like Sadequain, Jon Elia, Rahat Kazmi, Talat Hussain, Abida Parveen are famous shia personalities. Unarguably the biggest name, Mohammad Ali Jinnah, the creator of Pakistan, was Ismaili Shia.

Before existence of Pakistan, the Shias can be traced back in centuries, even in Moghul eras. Qazi Nurullah Shustari was the most prominent Shia scholar of Moghul era. In Akbar’s time, he was appointed Chief Qazi of the Moghul Empire due to attaining immense trust and respect of Akbar. In Jahangir’s time, things went worse for him as his rivals in Jahangir’s court were in powers to wreck his position. A fatwa was passed declaring him heretic and for his beliefs and faith on Shi’ism. He was executed on Jahangir’s words at almost 70 and was called ‘Shaheed-e-Salis’ (third martyr) after Muhammad Ibn Makki and Zainuddin al Amili respectively.

So what is Shia belief and faith. Very shortly, they believed Ali (R.A.) to be Muhammad (S.A.W)’s successor in the caliphate due to the fact that he was his first cousin and closest male relative as well as son-in-law. But that never happened. The Rashidun Caliphate ‘rightly guided caliphs’ was established and successors were Abu Bakr (R.A.), Umar (R.A.), Usman (R.A.) and last appointment was finally Ali (R.A.). First 3 successors are unacceptable to Shias and they actually curse them.

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There other beliefs are that the Holy Quran is incomplete whereas Allah says in Surah Al-Hijr (Quran 15:9) “Indeed, it is We who sent down the Qur’an and indeed, We will be its guardian.” Shias also curse wives of Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.) who are considered Ummahat-ul-Momineen ‘Mothers of the Believers’. They also pray only thrice a day instead of five and their azaan ‘call to worship’ is different. When it comes to marriage, Shia have mutaa system which means temporary marriage. As the meaning clarifies, the duration of this nikah contract is agreed in advance. In brief, time limit is fixed and wife is known as temporary wife. One of critical difference which separates the Shias and from biggest understanding far from religion is the shahada ‘declaration of faith’. Their kalima is edited with additional wordings in the end ‘wa ʿalīyyun walīyyu -llāh’ which means that Ali is Allah’s wali.

Happy new year to all the Muslims (who follow words of Allah and his Last Messenger S.A.W) and the other 72 sects. There is one more sect which was introduced in a British Sitcom ‘Citizen Khan’ which was termed blasphemy and mockery over Islam specially in Pakistan.

REASONS?? It is blasphemy and mockery over Islam.

REASONS?? It is blasphemy and mockery over Islam.

(I ask again) REASONS?? It is blasphemy and mockery over Islam.

THAT’S IT?? Ahh never mind…. I found O TWADDI sect far funny than all the sects which are based on school of thoughts whose deans have rendered valuable services to the world in producing and expanding ignorance in Muslim ummah. Few of sects are in fact insects on whom you need to spray insecticide who instead of following words of Allah and his Last Messenger S.A.W., follow their revolutionaries and missionaries. These betrayers produce their own books, and lie and deceive. Spread wrong message from their beehive and indirectly attack the moral faith.

So what is the battle of O TWADDI? Before marching towards an answer, let me tell you a story stamping in East Coast in the late 70s. In NYC, there were block parties residing in Bronx, mostly African Americans. In such parties, there were plenty of DJs who used to play Soul or Funky music originated from Jamaica. So when I say Jamaica, then it is understood that thousands of Jamaican immigrants turned to NYC for livelihood. One of them was DJ Kool Herc who later in this era introduced a music genre from these soul/funky music. That was called Hip-Hop.

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In the hip-hop culture, rapping was introduced which is an art of singing in a vocal style using only lyrics in rhyme. Early 80s grew more intensifying as rapping popularity increased. Competition existed not in rapping but bullying. Participants mostly black Americans entered the challenge to rap, bully and manhandle each other. One of early famous rapping challenge was between Kool Moe Dee and Busy Bee Starski back in 1981 or perhaps 1982, which Kool won. This was the beginning of battle which is known as Battle Rap.

Sooooo the battle of O TWADDI is like a battle rap where 2 rappers put-down, diss and insult each other while rapping. This battle is fought every Islamic year in the Holy month of Muharram between Sunnis and Shias. My perspective is Pakistan, oh I mean Islamic Republic of Pakistan. In rest of 11 months, there are very few incidents where disturbance between the two in the name of Islam occurs but Muharram is the month when they actually lose their temper. The hatred policy between the two has been traced for thousands of years but in Pakistan and other Islamic countries, it has heated more.

This country separated from it’s origin 66 years ago and came into existence based on theory (if I am not wrong  then the only 2 countries existed on theory – other being Israel). The mission was to establish an Islamic state which unfortunately divided into many groups (few for socio.political reasons). The biggest hurdle was following an existing heritage of Sufi religion inherited from centuries-backed Hindustan. The new geographic blood adopted the same tradition and followed their peers. Till now, Islam is what your forefathers have taught you with much a probability of error. You will obey them as a disciple.

Today, your religious mind is limited. Innovations (bida’ah) are trafficked and words of Allah are mostly ignored. Peers are your messiah and parrot is the messenger of your fate. Your life is not based on your prays but the trump cards. You won’t get scare of fighting or killing your own brother but surely when a black cat cross your path. Even if you don’t believe in that superstition, you surely will make a second ‘if’. Quite bizarre to a fact to observe just how a black cat in a cricket match can make a million viewers superstitious for a second. Your ears won’t hurt when hard rock music is played but your ears will fell trauma when playing with scissor will sound you omen.

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We belong to a country like many nationalities, where mostly those people argue or debate, who first of all lack knowledge. Having wisdom is the second thing but first, we are history’s greatest liars. We lie about our history, we lie about our religion. We speak like an angel as devil lies underneath. We criticize other rather than correcting them. And most bizarrely, we always get very aggressive. And for losing the temper, we pay the prize. I remember the incidents of Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoon controversy, YouTube release of movie Fitna and Quran-burning campaign from Pastor Terry Jones. When Muslims from many corners rose their voice with peaceful protest and even distributed copies of Quran at different places to show faith in humanity and proving Islam as religion of peace, the people from Pakistan side came up with some extraordinary laughing stock. They protest so rudely with anger that they began looting the malls, burn the personal properties and brought an uprising which obviously showed no sign of love for beloved Muhammad (S.A.W.)

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For few months this year, British Pakistani presenter Adil Ray’s “Citizen Khan” was fired and blasted by many Muslim viewers (mostly Pakistanis) quoting the sitcom mocking Islam and Pakistan. When the program was first aired, it received almost 200 complaints and accused of being disrespectful to the Quran. Many even filed petition to prevent the program airing on BBC One. Once I had noticed a short clip of the program for the first time, I knew it and told myself that on any part of the world, where the name ‘Pakistan’ is involved will surely meet a controversy.

For me it was absolutely pathetic and simultaneously funny to see Pakistanis complaining that a British sitcom mocked their religion, the Holy book and their beloved country. How sincere and loyal they became of their faith and country!! What token of love and respect they are temporarily depicting? From where does that blasphemy and mockery came. Why digging deep and exploring the blasphemy in a British sitcom?? Instead, go and correct yourself first. Are you really loyal to your faith enough to defend?

The O TWADDI sect in 1st episode of Season II got hugely negative remarks. Many claimed that a Pakistani is shown selling his pride and making joke of his religion in front of catholic dean by creating an imaginary sect ‘firqah’ in order to make a successful attempt in his daughter’s admission. I was like “SO WHAT?”. Two things came in my mind. One, sect is already a joke for me with an understanding that all 72 sects will be thrown in hell besides one following a right path (mentioned in Sahih Hadith). Two, bitter truth is that we Pakistanis (not all of us) are international beggars and can go to any limit for begging. It is nothing new for me to see people spreading their hands in front of others. Just look at our politicians, diplomats and bureaucrats; how they beg in front of IMF, NATO and US.

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The objection itself becomes a mockery when negative viewers objected that most of the cast playing Pakistani roles were actually Indians which brought the image down. This clearly showed that they knew nothing about sitcoms and movies. Actors are selected by judgment and suitability of character, not by nationality. How about Christopher Lee playing Jinnah and Mark Zubair playing Iqbal in ‘Jinnah’? How about Om Puri playing Ziaul Haq in ‘Charlie Wilson’s War’? Stop talking pathetic. If you cannot take a British humor, then go elsewhere and enjoy your local programs.

Those negative Pakistani viewers who have so much time complaining, cannot fall back and stop the bloody battle yearly fighting in Muharram. Instead, they themselves fall flat and do the same what they thought Mr. Khan was doing. Doing battle rap with each other, confusing and making your religion complicated, bringing Quran, Muhammad (S.A.W.) and Ali (R.A.) in your senseless heated arguments and killing each other simply proves that none of the party was ever correct or up to their words. All fall in same category. And blood got spilled, masjids and Hussainias got bombed, prophets and caliphs got insulted, and wives of Muhammad (S.A.W.) were abused. So that is an outstanding example you set to the whole world how peaceful you are.

Your neighbors have every right to laugh on you with the fact that fight between two different faiths are understood but killing each other under the same banner is never understood with the pre-understanding of separating from India in 1947 to establish an Islamic state. What a joke! Next Islamic royal rumble will be organized next year in early November with more casualties and mourning to come. Stay tuned…

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Galiyon kay awara bekaar batsmen
Kay patkha gaya jin pe pakram pakrai
Gawanay ki phitkar sarmaya unka
Na jeet kay haqdaar aur na ghar kay jamai

Na bowling hay shab ko, na batting saweray
Najasat mein runs, century se nigoray
Galiyon kay awara bekaar batsmen

Jo target milay, bojh-e-sansaar uthalo
Zara inko review ka matlab batado
Galiyon kay awara bekaar batsmen

Ye har ek player kay career bananay walay
Ye fielding se ukta kay marjanay walay
Galiyon kay awara bekaar batsmen

Sorry late Faiz uncle! I was just coming back from my work when Tabish Javed’s song ‘Kuttay’ played and reminded me all kuttays in Pakistan cricket’s nowadays innocent but brainless batting line up.

Useless, characterless, meaningless, worthless and chaseless. It has been more than two years since Pakistan cricket team ever chased a target in One Day Internationals (ODI) upto 250. Our batting standards are improving from worse to worst and nationwide hate towards Pakistan’s impotent batting line-up is increasing like the asking run-rate.

No matter how unpredictable this Green Army is, but the most predictable aspect of this team is they unarguably are the weakest target-chasers. History is prove and witness itself. In 1985 Sharjah contest, a batting line-up composed of Mudassar, Mohsin, Rameez, Miandad, Imran, Salim Malik; Miandad-army suicided at mere 87 runs while chasing India’s total of 125 runs. I repeat 125 runs!!!! Imran bowled his best bowling figures 6-14 that day.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/current/match/65732.html

Pakistan’s ill-fate in World Cup has also majorly been their failure in target chasing. Not surprisingly besides 1999 World Cup, Pakistan’s failure in title race all ended in unsuccessful target-chasing (excluding group stage exit in 1975, 2003 and 2007). Pakistan has suffered in innumerable ODI series deciders (3rd and 5th game) while batting unfortunately second and losing their way.

Uproar is always welcome by the cricket lovers as to when the batsmen will be able to chase the targets with ease? What exactly is their problem in chasing? Why their legs shake even in chasing a target mere 150?

I guess batting second is cricket-culturally Pakistan’s non-cure psychological disorder. This is their cricketing heritage as timeline proves they have always suffered and will. One could have sensed if Pakistan bat with B-team in failures, but we have watched Pakistan bizarrely collapsing even with A-class batsmen of their times like one game I mentioned above.

The current scenario of Pakistan’s batting is manuscript itself. The way they bat whether they bat first or second, their body language translates the fate of the game. When Pakistan was murdered 0-9 in their last tour to Australia few years ago, the-then coach Intikhab Alam called the team ” Mentally Retarded”.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/pakistan/content/story/458926.html

In 21st century T20 branded cricket, ODI teams are nowadays going crazy in smashing runs and accelerating their run-rates. 300 runs are common now. Infact, since ODI’s greatest match ever played at Johannesburg, there are 10 instances of 400+ totals in ODIs. (India 4, Pakistan 0)

When it comes to target chasings in ODIs, 44 targets of 300+ has been chased so far. Out of these, only 5 such chasings were done in the 90’s, while the rest since 2000. The superior 300+ chasers are India who chased 15 times as compared to Pakistan who chased only 4 times (dramatically all against India).

Keeping all these stats aside, the batting line-up of Pakistan nowadays looks scared of their ill-fate before facing the first delivery. The openers come to the crease to settle the opening stand but instead of hatching golden eggs, they become confused civil engineer with A3 paper in hand without a pencil. Instead of attacking the bowlers and increasing the run-rate, they keep analyzing the bowler’s length and counting spectators in VIP lounge. They bother to take risk.

Many openers and opening pairs have been tested to cement their place after their most profilic and successful Saeed Anwar. In past 10 years, many arrived and departed. Notable names were Imran Nazir, Imran Farhat, Taufeeq Umar, Yasir Hameed, Salman Butt and Nasir Jamshed. All of them impressed in the beginning but failed in later stages. I think the management didn’t groom the openers or didn’t utilized them properly. Specially Yasir Hameed was the one who grew faster as run-machine and was/is 3rd fastest batsman to cross 1000 ODI career runs. But once he failed, he got no support and fell miserably.

Salman Butt, ere infamous controversy, was one genuine left-hand opening batsman with 8 hundreds in only 78 ODIs (5 against India). Nasir Jamshed came to scene at 18 and played many exciting knocks. After his comeback in Asia Cup 2012, the lefty became prominent asset for the team, once averaging 50+ in ODIs and hitting 3 consecutive hundreds against India. Till the ODI series against India in 2012-13, Nasir had incidentally played all his ODI games in Asia. But once he stepped outside Asia, his performance dipped badly. With no motivation and lack of confidence, he reached 50 only twice in next 19 games.

No.3 is the position which Pakistan enjoyed for almost couple of decades with services of Ijaz Ahmad and Younis Khan for a long period. Since Younis Khan’s miserable ODI form in recent years and axing from the squad, the vacancy is still empty as youngsters like Asad Shafiq, Umar Amin and ‘professor’ Hafeez have been tested but to no success.

Down comes the middle order with the captain who don’t need any introduction. Misbah has been the mystery unsolved. Nation cries for his defensive approach ‘tuk tuk’ but nation also applaudes for his regular contribution of runs. The criticism against Misbah infuriates that he is the main culprit of weak batting line-up due to his entire slow approach of generating runs throughout the inning which costs him to score his maiden hundred in ODI format. Whereas critics favor Misbah in a manner that his runs (no matter how many balls he faced) in any situation (mostly complicated) adds value in Pakistan’s inning score which at dead end makes them reach towards 200 runs in all labored way. The word ‘mystery’ is unfolded due to the confounding fact that a batsman with defensive approach towards generating runs suddenly goes for a whack and hits a six which is not expected from a batsman of such orthodox style.

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Misbah’s captaincy has also been hither and thither. Taking leadership at the time when Pakistan cricket hit their worst controversy in 2010 and actually making comeback in international cricket + the team already lacking international cricket at home, was abnormal and too hard for a challenge. A shattered time unite under him and decorate PCB’s cabinet with few trophies. His captaincy nowadays is questionable due to many aspects of recently finished Pak-SA series where Pakistan lost the series miserably due to humongous batting collapses. Obviously he is not at all ultimate leader with the best decision-making quality. Every captain make mistakes so as Misbah. But I don’t agree that every bit of dust has to be spread on Misbah’s face.

Yes, I am disappointed with Misbah’s extreme selection of misfitting Sohail Tanvir in all 5 ODIs against SA who was absolute failure. Asad Shafiq and Umar Amin failed again to satisfy. Inclusion of Wahab in squad was another laughing stock. Hafeez and Nasir’s disastrous form continues. Genuine wkt-keeper Sarfaraz Ahmad wasn’t given a single chance to play and the funny part is that he can keep wickets but not capable of batting the way Umar Akmal bats with still a recognition what he stands for. Ajmal’s spin partner Abdur Rehman hugely ignored once again when he could easily have been picked in Sohail/Wahab’s place considering the turning pitch.

Now for the players I mentioned above, the blaming is hugely set against Misbah which I partially agree/disagree. We cannot fully blame Misbah and criticize his final XI selection at all. The more responsibility of team failure bends to chief selector Moin Khan who picked an absolute bizarre and unfit squad to face one of strongest sides in the world. Repeated ODI failures like Wahab, Sohail, Asad and Sarfaraz were included for nothing. Senior players like Shahid Afridi and Mohammad Hafeez were selected on a strong CV which has nothing to do with their current form (Afridi did showed some form in bowling). Umar Amin who was termed for future vice-captaincy in the backstage showed no impression. Ahmad Shahzad was trusted due to good showing in recent past and proved his worth in both batting and fielding. Junaid-Ifran-Ajmal are the most trusted trio of the year to be automatically your first priority in XI but Misbah’s tactics went strange of not utilizing Junaid properly in the series which deducts the marks from skipper. Sohaib Maqsood was the only newcomer in the squad who was the most successful showman in whole batting line-up with 2 back to back 50’s in as many matches.

In this series, I profound the mind-frame of team that they hugely and heavily relied on winning the toss, so they can bat first and ignore target-chasing mind game. And that is what exactly happened. SA were so lucky to win the toss 4 out of 5 times, chose to bat first and Pakistan in all 4 attempts failed to chase. Pakistan won the toss on only one occasion, chose to bat and despite scoring only 209 runs, they defended and won. There was no game-plan when it comes to batting. To a bizarre of batting standards, no.3 position was changed THRICE which looked pretty unusual in 5-game series.

Fielding is another department where Pakistan never satisfy the viewers. Many mis-fieldings specially in 4th ODI gift the opponent extra burden of runs on Pakistan as target. Despite the fact that Pakistan bowlers didn’t bowl a single wide or no-ball in inning, they conceded 266 runs. Gifting end overs to Sohail Tanvir was illogical and beyond my understanding which Pakistan paid a huge price specially in last 2 games. General coaching of veteran Dave Whatmore is also lacking some freshness and team is looking absolutely dull and out of shape. It seems like if Whatmore was never with them or the players are not willing to get trained or the other factor most probably be some problems existing between the coach and captain which lead towards uncertainty. In any case, Whatmore impact is no more.

Sooooo, chasing the turmoil is all about agony towards failure. Bowling always was and is their golden key to success but batting is what has made Pakistan in huge crisis. Chasing the turmoil is about existing nightmares ere your dreaming of path towards world title in 2015. Pakistan were crowned world champions in front of world-record cricket attendance of 87,000 ODI spectators at the same venue where world cup will be staged. Is there any ray of hope?

Let me put my points what I believe is best and most suitable measures to adopt as soon as possible. They might look difficult ever to implement but I firmly believe team might stand up to its feet by doing the following:

MAJOR SPONSORS: Admit it, Kool & Kool won’t kool your financial and marketing boom to capture a huge capacity of viewers/spectators. PCB should consider heavy investments and deal with global major sponsors the way BCCI deal. The central and provincial governments should implement huge scheme of investments. Highly recognized banks may aid you in sponsoring major competitions at high level. PCB need experienced sports consultants and strategists to develop lucrative cricket expansion deal.

DOMESTIC INFRASTRUCTURE: Above I mentioned ‘heavy investments’. Like Warren Buffett says, ‘Don’t put all eggs in one basket’. Apply this investing on various grounds and upgrade them. International cricket grounds are limited to very few and mostly in Punjab province. Cricket board has to put their money in grounding, curating and shaping the stadiums with all facilities a spectator should get. Consider shaping grounds of Peshawar, Faisalabad, Quetta, Hyderabad and Sargodha.

TALENT HUNT AND CRICKET CLINICS: Pakistan enjoys amazing talented cricketers introduced at domestic cricket but they are not well nurtured. Talent hunt campaign should be run by PCB appointed committee of former veteran players who hunt the brightest prospects. Listing them in contract promotion bases, PCB should organize Cricket Clinic twice a year and invite cricket’s big names to train, guide and educate them. PCB should heavily focus on A and B teams of Pakistan comprised of these shining players, so that they make cricket tours to England, South Africa and Australia.

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PERFORMANCE-BASED CONTRACTS: ICC recognize Central Contract system which I am yet to understand the logic. For me, the basic negativity lies in promotion/demotion of player (whether he is amateur or experienced) with increment/decrement in salaries into 3 different classes which begin revolts and misunderstandings between the players. Possibility of unjust is high. I believe instead of A,B,C-Z classes of contracts, there should be ‘Performance-Based Contracts’ with laws measured by PCB administrators under supervision of ICC. Under PBC, the board committee should strictly measure and scan every player’s performance series-by-series. A player with disappointing performance in 2 straight series shall be removed and call back until he proves his form in domestic cricket. A shining player from ‘A’ team should replace him with full confidence. In this fashion, Pakistan will, in every case, perform.

CAPTAIN AS CHIEF SELECTOR: A very innovative, time saving, misunderstanding reducing idea that I simply believe that the captain should be appointed as chief selector of his squad. I never understand function of selection committee, they simply always always fail to make a proper squad. It is the captain who knows who fits in his squad and to whom he chose to play. Captain should enjoy full authority of selection.

FIXTURES: Pakistan in recent years is playing very less number of tests and huge number of T20s which is also a major reason of lack of stability in batting. The more tests they play, the more consistency and temperament in batting will come. In recent years, Pakistan usually play 2-test series even against major teams. 1992 tour of England after World Cup was the last time Pakistan ever played 5-test series. Since then, they have played 4-test series twice both in England in 2006 and 2010. Pakistan should play at least 12 tests (4 sets of 3-test series), 30 ODIs (6 sets of 5-ODI series) and 10 T20Is.

MISSION-INTERNATIONAL CRICKET AT HOME: Don’t know why PCB is not able to bring international cricket back to home. You don’t need to invite test-playing nations. Why not bother inviting Afghanistan? Afghanistan Cricket Board has already signed a 2-year memorandum of understanding with PCB under which PCB will provide technical and professional support, coaching course, basic umpiring and curator courses.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/afghanistan/content/story/626326.html

So how come Pakistan cannot ask for favor to visit and play a short ODI series?? Pakistan can even invite Ireland or 2 associate teams and organize a tri-series just to make a go. Once such ideas are organized and played with most satisfactory security system, other cricket boards may probably give a green signal to tour Pakistan and things might then proceed successfully.

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MY TEAM SELECTION: If I am asked to make changes with full authority;

1. I will kick current Coach Dave Whatmore out of his contract. Simple it is, your formula and plans didn’t work or the players are not learning/willing to learn. I was always in favor of Whatmore with his amazing past experience with Ranatunga’s Lankan Tigers and Habibul Bashar’s Bangladesh. But unfortunately, things are not working so this is right time to leave. I will appoint a veteran Pakistani cricketer as national coach who can easily understand their problems.

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In fielding case, it is time to put Julien Fountain’s contract to end. I see Pakistan’s fielding becoming more bizarre under him. I have a very interesting idea but first let me know from the readers, do your players seriously look sportsman?? Do they have sporting physique?? HELL NO!! You need a strict trainer who will come up with immense physical training exercise, and who candidate can ever be better then your Army’s sergeant. Imagine impact of army officer’s training on our fielding. Not only basic skills will be polished, but also the players will be agile and keen runner. Not a joke but they will finally be able to attempt to dive.

2. Captaincy is the biggest debate once again. With both theories written above, it is hard to decide whether Misbah should retain his captaincy or not. If he wants to give up his captaincy, than it is fine and his own decision. Other candidates Hafeez and Afridi are not in good all-round form. Younis Khan is a great name for captaincy but his ODI form is disastrous. So I will keep Misbah the skipper till 2015 World Cup. One should not ignore his leadership feats which made Pakistan the most capable team of 2011, defeated the-then World no.1 test team England by 3-0, won Asia Cup 2012 and defeated India in ODI series.

3. From this series, I will bring/remove

Hammad Azam<>Sohail Tanvir,

Sadaf Hussain<>Wahab Riaz,

Adnan Akmal<>Sarfaraz Ahmad,

Babar Azam<>Asad Shafiq,

Haris Sohail<>Umar Amin,  

Raza Hasan<>Abdur Rehman

4. Mohammad Hafeez, Ahmad Shahzad, Umar Akmal, Shahid Afridi, Mohammad Irfan, Junaid Khan, Saeed Ajmal, Sohaib Maqsood and Misbah ul Haq will stay in the team with the inclusion of changes made above.

Afridi

Pakistan has 15 months to prepare themselves for the destination towards world title. They seriously need to take some measures otherwise it will be too late. Pakistan cricket is capable of fight backs, they do have strong fan following everywhere. All what they need is our green support to muster up their courage. Love and passion for the cricket should not dim their spirit.

Winning and losing is part of a game. I pray and wish all the best to the Team Green and keep Josh-e-Junoon alive. May you succeed and come back to your prime again. Love your cricket… Don’t hit wicket…

Ye mahroom marhoom agar aitamaad jagaye
To haarna hathiyar dalna bhool jayen
Ye chahen to jeet ko yadgaar bana len
Ye kisi bhi team ki pasliyan tak tor dalen
Koi inki ehsas-e-kamtari mitaday
Koi inke khoye hue junoon ko jagaday

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