Misbah-ul-Haq shot down in a blaze of bathos

Chasing 261 against India, Misbah-ul-Haq didn’t panic. As the run-rate climbed, Misbah kept his cool and as wickets fell, he stood firm, maintaining an almost tangible air of lack-of-intent.

Dead-batting the ball again and again, Misbah sought to wear down the Indian attack to the extent that the match had almost gone for Pakistan before he leapt into action. Then, a man sensing his opportunity, he dead-batted some more.

Misbah wasn’t going to be put off by the fact that Pakistan needed eight or nine an over. He was in the zone. Only when the rate reached six runs a ball did he act, at which point he failed to score, surrendering the match.

It was majestic stuff. Fantastically admirable in its sheer wrong-headedness. Recognising that fact, the giant 28,000 crowd – a crowd that even Wolverhampton Wanderers would be proud of – put aside India’s victory in favour of a magnanimous standing ovation for that man Misbah.

Well played, Misbah. Well played.

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25 Appeals

  1. Was just a terrible batting display all around. Wish I’d seen Riaz’s spell against top batting in the first innings, I got back for Pakistan’s innings and it was suckage.

    Yeah, Misbah got it wrong but it’s mostly because he’s just not that good. How many times did he smash it straight to a fielder?

    If the top four hadn’t all thrown away good starts, maybe got another 5-10 runs each, Pakistan would’ve won the game.

    • everyone tried their best n i think india played better n deser ved da trophy although paki still tried their utmost best i was fascinated by misbah’ul haq batting he jus stood der lyk a soldier he must be brave anyway wahab riaz gt da wicketz n everyone panicked but paki were dissapointed congratulations india

    • IT SEEMS THAT THERE IS ONLY 1 BATSMAN IN THE PAKISTAN SIDE THAT PPL LOOK UP 4 WINNING THEM MATCHES AGAINST INDIA IN A WC… ALL OTHERS FAILD AND YET THEY R NOT RESPONSIBLE… HUH… I LOVE MISBAH…..

  2. Don’t forget that Misbah’s exceptional batting display came after a stellar performance in the field…

  3. not sure i buy into this sudden trend for putting all the blame on batsmen who score slowly.

    sometimes the pitch is slow and it’s hard to get the ball away, and the man who is in (trott, misbah) feels it’s better to stay in and have a crack at getting 25 off the last over than just hit it up in the air (morgan, afridi).

    • King Cricket

      March 30, 2011 at 9:57 pm

      There were far worse crimes in this match than Misbah’s batting, but it was the funniest.

  4. Misbah can’t catch a break can he? If the other 10 clowns got their act together, they would have had a chance. But their attempts to force a 100th international ton down Tendulkar’s throat sort of got in the way.

  5. I was expecting a “Sachin Tendulkar is not a man you can give a fourth chance to” post.

  6. Well, the fourth chance cost Pakistan just 4 runs…

  7. Does it seem churlish or smug for me to say that it has taken 48 matches to get to the two teams I would have named for the final before a ball was bowled in this tournament?

    Yup, I’ve just reread my words. Churlish AND smug AND true.

    • That’s what they’re doing next time, Ged – don’t let the cat out of the bag! (No cats were harmed in the making of that metaphor.) Next time, someone (it could be Ged, he seems to be in on things) is going to be taken into a room with all of the team details, stats, height charts, favourite crisps lists, etc, and will emerge some weeks later with the names of the finalists.

      It all makes complete sense in the furtherment of the potential for cricket as a revenue-maximising tool. This time we’ve had adverts when a wicket falls and between overs, and cleverly they’ve also been advertising BETWEEN DELIVERIES by shrinking the screen and advertising in the two strips of space created. That hasn’t got on my fucking nerves at all – I mean, who wants to watch a bowler walk back to the end of his run up when you could be learning about India’s first luxury sedan, again?

      So, what is the only thing that is still getting in the way of advertising? Actual cricket, obviously. With this plan we’ll have none of that, and instead we can have four weeks of watching a shut door (which could have ads on it) and the screen can be shrunk and moved wherever and whenever they want. There can be speculation and discussion as inane as they want. And think of the tension as the moment of revelation approaches. Roll on the Vegemite World Cup 2015 in association with Drizabone and brought to you by Tooheys – the beer you can drink till you’re sick. I can’t Holden wait.

  8. Misbah can’t even catch a cold.

    The ‘let the RRR get up to 36 and go for broke isn’t seen often enough.

  9. Be fair. he could have been given instructions.

  10. Yes Fred. Nobody thought of putting match-fixing and Pakistan together. It all makes sense now.

  11. This has been making the rounds since T20 WC 2007 but here it is anyway because it is somewhat relevant to the topic at hand:

    Knock knock
    Who’s there?
    Misbah
    Misbah who?
    Missed by 29 runs.

  12. I find that saying “fuck off” to everything in life that is trying to push you in a certain direction is increasingly looking like the only thing that can or should be done. Refusing to give a shit about run rate is part of this.

  13. It was very funny. It’s a shame that Afridi didn’t do something weird to the ball or the pitch as well, that would have made it even better.

  14. I think everyone in Pakistan team except Afridi wanted Sachin Tendulkar to score his 100th hundred. But, even Sachin Tendulkar wouldn’t have loved to stay after four drops.

  15. A far cry from the old days for Misbah, eh. He was likely has given instructions to stay in if at all possible, especially as wickets were falling all around. But apparently he took it a bit too literally, and forgot the run-scoring part.

  16. Misbah deserves a bit of flack BUT if Umar Gul had bowled half as well as he can, Pakistan would have won this.

    Younis threw his wicket away pretty softly. Had Misbah done the same, he would, oddly enough, be getting far less attention.

  17. By the way, this whole discussion is pointless. India would have progressed to the final even if Pakistan had won. Surprised? Check this:

    http://bit.ly/ikiaNg

    • April Fool?

    • Not sure which was weaker – Pakistan’s batting or that April Fool piece.

      I feel a bot sorry for Misbah. It must be slowly dawning on him that he’s taking the rap for this defeat.

      Very slowly dawning.

  18. I think Misbah thought it is 60 over match OR score board played trick to display 10 over less on score board. But in either case, Misbah did not want a batting collasp and played sensibly by not scoring runs.

  19. It seems whole team was ready mentally to loose the game. Misbah was playing slow, Afridi did not take batting power play on time, Afridi was not agressive in fielding and never scolded or shouted on drop catches. I saw only Hafeez who shouted on Umar Akmal by dropping Sachin catch on his bowling. Or Afridi knew that these senior players will never let him win world cup.

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