Misbah to retire from ODIs after World Cup
Pakistan’s long serving captain Misbah-ul-Haq today confirmed he would be retiring from ODIs and T20 cricket after the 2015 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.
“I have already informed the Pakistan Cricket Board I will be retiring from one-day cricket after the World Cup,” Misbah said from Lahore. Earlier on Sunday, a senior official of the board said Misbah had informed the board of his retirement plans.
“I think this is the best time for me to say goodbye to limited overs cricket and focus on Test cricket,” Misbah said. Misbah was made Test captain in late 2010 after the spot fixing scandal in England and in mid-2011 he also took over as ODI and T20 captain after the board sacked Shahid Afridi as captain on disciplinary grounds.
The PCB however later appointed Muhammad Hafeez as the national T20 captain leaving Misbah to lead the Test and one-day side. Misbah, who is Pakistan’s most successful Test captain said he had thought about his future and felt he should focus on the longest format after the World Cup. “The World Cup will be my last one-day international event and I hope I can come up to the expectations of the nation,” he said. The 41-year-old scored 4669 runs in 153 ODIs at 42.83 besides making 788 runs in 39 T20 Internationals at 37.52. Misbah is recovering from a hamstring injury and is expected to take a fitness test in Lahore on Monday.
Pakistan open to play ‘home’ series in India
PCB chairman Shaharyar Khan said on Sunday Pakistan would not completely rule out playing its ‘home’ series against India later this year on Indian soil if the financial returns for the cricket board were as desired by them. “They have not spoken to us about it officially but we have also heard about it. But as things stand now it is stated clearly in the MoU between the two boards that the first series of the six series bilateral package will be played in the UAE this December. The venue of the first series which will be our ‘home’ series, is described as neutral venue and UAE in the MoU,” Shaharyar said. He, however, admitted until now the two boards had not been able to sign a formal agreement as a follow-up to the MoU on the bilateral six series package which was agreed upon by the boards as a result of the restructuring of governance in the ICC last year with India, Australia and England gaining absolute power in the world body. Pakistan had gone and played in India in late 2012 while the last time India toured Pakistan was in 2008.