August 13th, 2009 by Ravi Matah | Posted in Sports   Comments Off on PAKISTAN – SRI LANKA T20 MATCH
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The one-off T20 match between Sri Lanka and Pakistan was played at Premdasa Stadium, Colombo on Wednesday.

Younis Khan did not play the  T20 match as he had resigned from T20 Cricket after winning the T20 world cup for Pakistan in England in June.

Pakistan won the toss and elected to bat.  Shahid Afridi, on his debut as Pakistan;s T20 captain, slammed 50 runs of  37 balls and Imran Nazir chipped in with 40 runs off 28 balls. These two were ably supported by  Umar Akmal who contributed useful 30 runs to bring the Pakistan total to  172 for 5 in the allotted 20 overs.

In reply Sri Lanka did not show any resistance whatsoever and were all out for 120 runs in 18.1 overs. Jayasurya  23   and Sangakara 38 were the only contributors for Sri Lanka.  Naved-ul-Hasan and  Saeed Ajmal took three wickets a piece for Pakistan

Shahid Afridi was declared the man of the match.

Earlier, Pakistan had lost the Test series 2-0 (with one Test drawn) and also the ODI’s 3-2 in their recent encounter in Sri Lanka. This was not expected. The recent T-20 world champions under the aegis of Younis Khan gave away their matches pathetically.

Pakistan are a tremendous side but at times it appeared that the two teams were not a match for each other and every match looked  prima-facie, a one sided affair.

Why? What goes wrong with a team who has the blend of youth and experience that it performs very well on a given day and goes down helplessly on another? Agreed, cricket is a one ball game but aren’t the batsmen supposed to play every ball on its’ merit?

Abdul Qadir, former chief selector and legendry leg spinner, said that resignations should come from the top to the bottom after Pakistan’s debacle in Sri Lanka.

I dont agree. Yes, victory is sweet, but one can not always win and any team which performs well on the given day – will win.

Captain of Pakistan team, Younis Khan, owned the responsibility of Pakistan’s dismal performance in Sri Lanka. As per press reports he was quoted as saying, “I will not apologise to any one nor will I resign as captain because it’s part of the game to loose or win”

Are there differences in the team? “No” says Younis Khan according to press reports. There were also reports of match fixing allegations about a week ago against the team, which were vehemently denied by Younis Khan.

I think Pakistan team needs a strong fellow to keep the team ‘united and well knit’.  I hope Saeed Anwar, former world class batsman, who is likely to be tipped as the team manager, will be able to do the task of uniting them as well as uplifting their morale.

There is no doubt that Pakistan Cricket team is a force to reckon with in the international arena.
Ravi Matah

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