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No retirement for Misbah-ul-Haq just yet!


Karachi: Pakistan Test captain Misbah-ul-Haq has said that he had set no deadline for retiring from the longer format and would review his future after the series against England in the United Arab Emirates.

Misbah, 41, who has represented Pakistan in 58 Tests and 162 one-day internationals captaining in both formats since late 2010, had earlier said that he would like to retire on a high after playing the planned series against India in December this year.

But with the planned series in jeopardy, Misbah appeared to have changed his mind about his retirement plans while speaking to a news channel. “I have made no plans at this time but I will review my future and what I should do after the series against England,” Misbah said.

The middle-order batsman, who despite being Pakistan’s most successful Test captain, has had his fair share of critics for his brand of captaincy and cricket said he is still enjoying the game and the competition at the highest level.

“It is a challenge to lead the Pakistan team and the players have really done well as a unit which is why despite not playing at home since 2009 we have achieved some notable success,” he said.

Misbah also credited the players, who have backed him wholeheartedly, for the teams’ good performances.

“The series against England will be a challenging one even though we play on pitches to which we are used too playing. But I don’t think the results of 2012 will matter now as England have new players and have recently won the Ashes as well,” he noted.

In 2012 Pakistan blanked England 3-0 in the Test series in the UAE although the Three Lions were perched at the top of the rankings in the longer format. But since then both sides have seen notable changes in their squad.

Pakistan have lost the services of off-spinner Saeed Ajmal and left-arm spinner Abdul Rehman while Muhammad Hafeez is unable to bowl due to his bowling action being declared illegal by the ICC. The trio had played a major role in Pakistan’s Test series win three years back.

Misbah noted that Pakistan had done extremely well in Test matches and put this down to consistency in performances by the players. “The good thing is that the same nucleus of players have been around in the Test squad for the last few years now and have gelled very well which has given stability to the side. We lost Saeed last year but Yasir has stepped in and done well.”

Misbah said that the Test century he scored against Australia last year to equal a world record was his most memorable knock and he still enjoyed reliving it.

Misbah described himself as a straight forward and simple person who enjoyed to spend time with his family when not playing cricket for Pakistan.


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