Misbah-ul-Haq defers decision on future, leaves for England tour

first_imgMisbah-ul-Haq is yet to take a decision on his Test future and as of now wants to focus on Pakistan’s crucial tour of England.”Right now I am just focusing on the four Tests in England because if we want to show everyone our top three ranking in Test cricket is not based around our wins in the UAE we need to put up a good show against England,” Misbah said before the team’s departure.There were anticipations that Pakistan’s longest serving Test skipper may take a call on his future before the team’s departure to England on Friday. It is believed that Misbah had talks with PCB officials regarding his future plans.The 42-year-old was compelled by PCB last year to continue as Test skipper till the tour of England.”He has informed the PCB he will decide on whether he will continue to play Test cricket after the series in England,” a source said.Misbah said the series in England would be a challenge for the batsmen since they had hardly played outside the UAE in the last few years.”But we have prepared hard for this series on similar pitches and I am banking on the fact that all our batsmen are now hardened Test campaigners,” he said.Misbah said that the batsmen had been told to take their time in England and play a waiting and patient game.”Conditions do vary a lot in England and one session turns everything upside down so we are going to take it session by session. What we have achieved against England in the UAE in 2012 and 2015 does not matter now for us,” Misbah said.advertisementMisbah’s critics and supporters believe that the tour to England will define his place in Pakistan cricket history as Pakistan in the last four to five years have played their home series in the United Arab Emirates on generally flat pitches.Misbah was not part of the Pakistan squad that went to England in late 2010 for a tour which saw the infamous spot-fixing scandal erupt in the fourth and final test at Lords. But it was after that tour that the PCB decided to appoint Misbah as Test captain, a position he has held until now and become Pakistan’s most successful Test captain.(with PTI inputs)last_img read more

Lionel Messi surprised with Cristiano Ronaldo’s move to Juventus

first_imgBarcelona captain Lionel Messi said that he was surprised to see Cristiano Ronaldo leaving Real Madrid and joining Juventus during the close season.The Messi-Ronaldo rivalry made La Liga a spectacle over the past nine seasons and Messi feels that Ronaldo’s departure definitely makes Real a “less good” now.”Real Madrid are one of the best teams in the world with a great squad (but) it’s evident that the absence of Cristiano Ronaldo makes them less good and makes Juventus (one of the) clear favourites to win the Champions League.”It surprised me. I didn’t imagine him leaving Madrid or joining Juventus. There were a lot of teams that wanted him. It surprised me but he went to a very good team,” Messi told Catalunya Radio in a show broadcast on Monday.Messi also spoke about the importance of winning the Champions League this season and how badly Barcelona want it. Early in August, Messi said that Barcelona wanted to win the competition after their heartbreak against AS Roma in the quarter-finals last season and on Monday, he reaffirmed his desire to win the trophy Barcelona last lifted in 2015.”It’s time. We have had three years in a row being knocked out of the Champions League and are hurt further still from last season’s result in Rome,” added Messi.”We have a spectacular squad and we can fight for it. We lost chances to win it in the (Pep) Guardiola era against Inter (Milan) and Chelsea. We were better than them and we could not get to the final because of small details.”advertisementBarcelona face Inter, Tottenham Hotspur and PSV Eindhoveni the group stage of this season’s competition.last_img read more