Geoff Lawson, the former Australian cricketer and ex-Pakistan coach, believes that Misbah-ul-Haq has been a great servant of Pakistan cricket and the sporting fans must not judge him on just the series against South Africa.
Misbah was appointed as the captain of the Test team after the disastrous tour of England in 2010, with the national side in complete taters. The middle-order batsman showed his leadership skills and consolidated the situation for the Green Shirts. After the tour of West Indies in 2011, the cricketer from Mianwali was handed over the leadership of all three formats of the game, only to be replaced by Mohammad Hafeez for the T20s last year.
The seasoned cricketer’s greatest achievement remains the 3-0 whitewash against England in United Arab Emirates (UAE) last year, as the opposition was ranked as the world’s best Test team at that time.
However, Misbah and company could not live up to the expectations in the recently-concluded Test series against South Africa, failing to compete against some of the finest fast bowlers of the current era.
Lawson, who served as Pakistan’s coach between 2007 and 2008, while speaking to Pakpassion, said that the Proteas are the best side of the globe at the present moment and competing against them at their own backyard was surely not a child’s play.
The former Australian fast bowler praised the past performances of the right-handed batsman, who played an influential role in pulling Pakistan out of the miseries of the spot-fixing scandal.
Lawson said, “It’s harsh to judge Misbah just on the South African Test series as the opposition bowling was of the highest calibre. Misbah is a very smart cricketer who has got the best out of what he has. He’s heading towards 39 years of age and that makes it pretty tough. He’s survived on his instincts and his cricketing intellect and he’s been a great leader.”
However, the former cricketer understands that Misbah is running out of age in international cricket and Pakistan needs a fresh captain, who can take care of the team in the coming years.
“Yes they will have to find a new leader eventually but he’s done a terrific job. His best days were probably when he wasn’t given the opportunities at international level that he should have been given,” he added.