Former Pakistan cricket chiefs and Test players were left disappointed with the national team’s Test series whitewash to South Africa, citing lack of professionalism as the reason for the downfall of Dav Whatmore’s men.
Pakistan appeared to be a complete mismatch for the number one Test side as they lost all three matches. The tourists faced defeat in the first Test by a margin of 211 runs and went down in Cape Town by four wickets to ensure a series win for South Africa. And then, their hopes of claiming back some pride were dismissed after they were annihilated in Centurion by an innings and 19 runs in the final Test.
Pakistan captain Misbahul Haq provided various reasons for his team’s failure, blaming injuries, flopped batting and lack of Test exposure.
However, former PCB chief Khalid Mehmood believed the real problem was related to management issues, which led to the team’s embarrassing defeat.
“I didn’t see any special preparations for such a big series,” Mehmood told The Express Tribune. “Our team wasn’t acclimatised with conditions in South Africa since they had played in familiar conditions in the UAE, Sri Lanka or India before this series.
“It was an extraordinary competition for the team but it was not given proper preparations for it.”
Mehmood said he was surprised to see Whatmore not making any special preparations for the series.
“Even in the past, our cricketers used to make special arrangements before a series in Australia or England like practicing with a wet tennis ball.
“Whatmore is a big name in coaching and has loads of experience on him. It is beyond me why we went under-prepared for such a high-profile series. The reason why our batsmen and bowlers looked helpless against South Africa was because they were not given appropriate preparation.
“Whatmore is entirely responsible and he should be taken to task for this defeat.”
Mehmood, however restrained from criticising the under-fire selection committee, saying there was not much to be questioned, since Pakistan have a limited pool of players ready for Test cricket.
But former chairman Ijaz Butt believes ‘poor selection’, along with dismal team management was the reason for failure in the series.
“The team management and selection committee should resign by accepting responsibility for the loss,” said Butt.
Poor strategy cost us dearly, says Moin
Meanwhile, former captain Moin Khan, while blaming Whatmore and Misbah, said poor strategy was the reason why the team suffered a whitewash.
“It’s also a failure of the team management,” said the former captain. “We saw players repeating mistakes again and again in the series. This happened because of poor strategy and planning. We continued to change combinations throughout the series.
“Our bowlers have been our strength but we came up with a changed attack in every match. I have failed to understand the strategy of the team management.”
Mohsin Khan, the former coach, who mentored Pakistan to a clean-sweep against England, said the team looked below-par in the entire series.
“The determination and killer instinct was missing in the entire series,” said the former coach. “It is the responsibility of the team management to motivate players during tough times. It failed to get a combined effort from players throughout the series.”
“Our bowlers have been our strength but we came up with a different attack in every match. I have failed to understand the strategy of the team management.”
“It was due to poor preparations that our batsmen and bowlers
looked helpless against South Africa. Whatmore is entirely responsible for this defeat.”
“The determination and killer instinct was missing. It is the responsibility of the team management to motivate players during tough times. It failed to get a combined effort.”
Published in The Express Tribune, February 26th, 2013.