Misbah terms win special

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Misbah terms win special

Pakistan captain wants to push pedal to the metal after defeating South Africa in first Test

By James Jose

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Published: Fri 18 Oct 2013, 11:53 AM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 7:07 PM

ABU DHABI — Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq termed the Test win against South Africa as “special” and added that they will push the pedal to the metal.

Pakistan defeated the world’s No1. Test team South Africa by seven wickets and with a day to spare in the first Test at the Shaikh Zayed International Cricket Stadium on Thursday.

“That was really a much-needed win for us, especially with the bulk of youngsters in the side. We really had the belief that we can do it, and I think that gave the youngsters a fair bit of confidence that we can beat the No. 1 side in the world we can do it against any side in the world. A win is always important for the team to boost its confidence, and, especially against No.1 team, it’s really special,” Misbah said after the Test on Thursday.

“This was something special, winning a Test match against South Africa. I always believed that this team has the quality to produce this type of quality cricket because we did it before against England when they were No.1 side in the world and now South Africa, who are the No.1 side in the world. I think that’s a really wonderful job by the team that they are not under pressure against a top quality side in the world,” he added.

Misbah upped the pyschological battle by saying that they will use the conditions and go all-out for a series win.

“We want results, no doubt. We want to exploit our home advantage and we will do that. But we want a result. We just don’t want to go there and spend five days and get a draw. Whenever you have negative thoughts in your mind, it won’t give you good results. We are positive about that. We want a result no matter whatever happens. If we win or lose, it doesn’t matter. But we will prepare a wicket to produce a result,” warned Misbah.

Pakistan were blanked 3-0 when they toured there in February but Misbah said that revenge was not on their mind.

“It is not a matter of revenge. It is about taking it game by game. This game was ours because we played good cricket. But the next game could be totally different. They ar the No.1 side in the world and they will make a come back,” said Misbah.

“We have to increase our level of performance if we want to win against them. Anything can happen. You can’t control results, but we will try to play more better cricket than we played in this Test match,” he said.

“South Africa are fighters. They are a world class team. The way they fought with 40 runs, you could really feel they will come harder and you have to be on your toes all the time against such opposition,” he added.

Misbah felt that conditions do play a vital role in a Test and said that it helped them here and they will continue to exploit it.

“ I think conditions do play an important role. When we went to South Africa, we lost 3-0. And now, South Africa are the No.1 team. England also did struggle here. I think conditions have a big role in results of Test matches.

“We were saying at that time too that conditions were different in Zimbabwe. It was seaming conditions. Conditions do suit us here. The record of Saeed Ajmal is good. The record of Rehman is good and the way Zulfiqar Babar has bowled, here it was a big plus point for us,” Misbah said.

Misbah was pleased with his openers and said their performance gave them the advantage.

“The two openers gave us a big advantage in the first innings. The way Khurram Manzoor and Shan Masood played, they took the game away from South Africa. Not only did they give us a good start, they played with a positive intent, almost four an over. That was something really special for us. That momentum gave us a chance to really press the South Africans and I think everybody then continued that momentum and gave us the big advantage in winning the game,” he said. He also praised his bowlers and said it was a team effort. “I think the most important thing was that the way our bowlers bowled on a flat track. They really gave us a good sniff by getting South Africa’s big batting line-up. Getting them out for under 250 with so many of their batsmen on the top of the world rankings, that gave us a sniff of a win,” Misbah said.

He was delighted to get a hundred against South Africa and said that he will remember it for a long time.

“There’s nothing more special than a 100 for a batsman. It is the most precious thing for a batsman to score a 100. It was really something special for me and especially against the No.1 team in the world. I really enjoyed that. We won the game as well and that’s something special to remember,” said Misbah, who moved to No.7 in the ICC rankings for Test batsmen.

james@khaleejtimes.com


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