Monday, March 23, 2015

Wahab Vs Watson: "Cricket at its Absolute Best"

Ricky Ponting, the legendary captain of the Australian national cricket team, has described Pakistani fast bowler Wahab Riaz's bowling in Pakistan versus Australia quarter final at the ICC World Cup 2015 as "extraordinary spell" and the contest between Wahab and Watson "cricket at its absolute best".

Brian Lara, another great cricketer and ex-captain of the West Indies, has called the decision to fine Wahab Riaz "ridiculous". Lara also offered to pay Wahab's fine.

Wahab's initial six-over spell brought 2 for 24.  Then it was a dropped catch off of Wahab's bowling early in the innings that saved Watson from being dismissed at a very low score.  Australia stood at 83 for 3 at this point.   "(Watson) couldn't do much but survive against Wahab Riaz in that extraordinary spell on Friday night," Ponting wrote in The Australian. "Their contest was cricket at its absolute best. Watto (Shane Watson) didn't want to hook him and Wahab (Raz) was going to make life hell for him if he didn't". Watson made the best of the chance afforded by the dropped catch to score an unbeaten 64 off of 66 balls, taking Australia to victory.

Another critical dropped catch was that of Glenn Maxwell off of Wahab when Australia were at 185 for 4. Maxwell reached an unbeaten 44 to win the match for Australia.  Although Pakistan couldn't win the encounter, it did earn a lot of respect for Wahab from Brian Lara who was incensed by the ICC decision to fine Wahab 50% of his match fee. "It's just unbelievable that that's the end result ... both were fined. I don't know what the ICC is thinking. It's just uncalled for. We need this in a sport that people are running away from, especially 50-over cricket. I loved the exchange. It was above board as far as I'm concerned and I can't wait to meet him. I want to meet with [this] Riaz guy. I'll pay the fine."

Wahab Riaz is the latest pacer to come from the land that produced legendary fast bowlers like Fazal Mahmood, Imran Khan, Wasim Akram, Waqar Younus and Shoaib Akhtar. Mohammad Irfan, 7 ft 1 in tall fast bowler with the distinction of being the tallest in the history of cricket, could not play against Australia due to injury. The list of the victims of bouncers bowled by Pakistani pacers reads like the Who's Who of international cricket: Sachin Tendulkar, Alan Lamb, Mohinder Amarnath, Lance Cairns, Brian Lara, Shane Watson, Saurav Ganguly and Yuvraj Singh.

Pakistani bowlers, particularly Wahab Riaz, bowled their hearts out but they still couldn't make up for their team-mates' poor batting and fielding. The shot selections by Pakistani batsmen were just atrocious and the fielding extremely poor. It's hard for any side, including Pakistan, to win against a well-rounded side like Australia without strong performance in all three departments: Batting, Bowling and Fielding.

Here's a video clip on Wahab's performance:

Wahab Riaz fight with Shane Watson Australia vs... by gagan051194

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Pakistan Cricket Needs Top Sports Psychologist and World-Class Batting Coach

Pakistan Won 1992 World Cup After Losing to India and West Indies

Top Ten Sledges in Cricket

Pakistan Breaks Australia's 34-Match Winning Streak

Obama on Cricket

Case For Resuming India-Pakistan Peace Talks

Pakistan Punish Aussie 2-0 in T20 Series 

Afridi's Leadership

Pakistan In, India Out of T20 Semis

Pakistan Beat India in South Africa 

Kiwis Dash Pakistan's ICC Championship Hopes

Pakistan Crowned World T20 Champs

Pakistan's Aisamul Haq Beats Tennis Great Roger Federer


Tambi Dude said...

It was a fantastic bowling, but Pak was a bad team. At last the ghost of 1992 is over.

Riaz Haq said...

Wahab Riaz's hostile six-over burst against Australia has been hailed as the spell of the Cricket World Cup by Sachin Tendulkar.
Sachin Tendulkar has hailed Pakistan paceman Wahab Riaz for producing the standout bowling spell of the Cricket World Cup.
Australia sealed their fifth 50-over world title on Sunday courtesy of a dominant seven-wicket victory over fellow co-hosts New Zealand at the MCG.
However, Michael Clarke's side were given a significant scare before prevailing in their quarter-final against Pakistan in Adelaide, as Wahab posed all sorts of problems in an eye-catching six-over burst early in Australia's chase.
Operating at express pace, the left-armer removed David Warner and Clarke in his opening spell, reducing Australia to 59-3 in pursuit of 214.
Wahab should also have picked up the wicket of Shane Watson, but Rahat Ali was guilty of a terrible drop at fine-leg and that proved a turning point as Australia recovered their composure to triumph by six wickets.

Figures of 2-54 from nine overs did little justice to Wahab's performance, which left spectators on the edge of their seats.
In an interview with the International Cricket Council (ICC), India great Tendulkar - an event ambassador for the World Cup - said: "One spell that stands out the most, according to what I saw, is definitely Wahab Riaz's spell.

"He didn't pick up many wickets in that spell, but [what] a spell to watch. To me, I think the spell of the tournament. Those kind of performances stay with you forever."
Tendulkar highlighted a number of other impressive individual performances during the six-week tournament, reserving praise for the likes of Martin Guptill, Chris Gayle, Trent Boult, Tim Southee, AB de Villiers, Mitchell Starc and Kumar Sangakkara.
"We all enjoyed those performances," added the 41-year-old. "Fifteen years down the line you will be talking about these innings and these spells."

Riaz Haq said...

Arabic tattoo on #Australia Captain Clarke's arm: "The pain of discipline is nothing like the pain of disappointment" …

Some people asked me that whats written there on Clarke's arm. So here I am telling, Clarke has tattoed two quotes one is Latin Carpe Diem which means "seize the day" and other is written in Arabic which means "The pain of discipline is nothing like the pain of disappointment", this quote is by Justin Langer, so Clarke, who is impressed by Langer, translated it in Arabic and tattoed it on his arm.

Riaz Haq said...

Men from #Pakistan third sexiest in the world after men from #Ireland and #Australia … via @HPLifestyle

The sexiest nationalities for men:

10. Spanish
9. Danish
8. Nigerian
7. Italian
6. Scottish
5. English
4. American
3. Pakistani
2. Australian
1. Irish

The sexiest nationalities for women:

10. Lebanese
9. Bulgarian
8. Filipina
7. Brazilian
6. Australian
5. English
4. Colombian
3. American
2. Barbadian/Bajan
1. Armenian

Riaz Haq said...

Pakistanis hotter than Indians, Buzzfeed India editor says

As Sunday’s Pakistan-India world cup match was drawing to a close, something other than Misbah-ul-Haq’s valiant effort to save face was causing a stir on Twitter.

It all began when Rega Jha, Buzzfeed India’s 23-year-old editor, tweeted: “It's so sad that no matter who wins, Pakistanis will continue to be way hotter than us and we'll continue to be their ugly neighbours.”:

Riaz Haq said...

#Pakistani Men Are Third On The World's Sexiest List. #Indians Aren't Even On It! #Pakistan #India …

Pakistani Men Are Third On The World's Sexiest List. Indians Aren't Even On It! By Kunal Anand
Posted on May 6, 201554.9 K
A destination dating site has curated the world's sexiest people, and Indians are no where on this list. Miss Travel, a site which curates members according to how generous and good looking they are, has give top marks to Armenian women and Irish men.Who made the list?The travel site surveyed over 110,000 Americans, and we were surprised that they chose Pakistanis over Indians, considering how much hate our neighbour gets. The only Armenian woman we know needs a LOT of makeup, but she works it well.

Riaz Haq said...

#Pakistan's highest ever run chase in Test #cricket, 6th best ever, secures 2-1 series win over #SriLanka. #PakvSL …

The tourists finished on 382-3 in Pallekele to claim a seven-wicket win in the final and decisive Test.
Chasing 377, Pakistan were 13-2 before Younis Khan and Shan Masood put on 242 for the third wicket.
Masood was out for 125 but Khan was 171 not out as Pakistan reached the target to move to third in the Test rankings.
The total, sealed when captain Misbah-ul-Haq (59 not out) hit Jehan Mubarak for six, was also the highest run chase made in Sri Lanka and the second highest made in Asia.
Pakistan had gone into the final day needing 147 more runs for a memorable win and off-spinner Tharindu Kaushal drew Masood out of his crease to have him stumped.
But that was the only wicket Sri Lanka managed as they suffered a first home series defeat by Pakistan since 2006.
Sri Lanka drop four ranking points, but remain seventh on the International Cricket Council's list.

Riaz Haq said...

#Pakistan's talented cricket team’s success marred by nepotism: Geoffrey Boycott …

“What has happened at times is that if you were dropped and you had an influential uncle then you’d phone him up and he’d interfere and try and get you back into the team. It’s very difficult when you have all that going on and the environment it creates is not a healthy one.

Former England captain Geoffrey Boycott said on Monday Pakistani cricketers have always had raw talent despite having lesser access to good facilities but nepotism is weakening its roots and is causing instability.

“What is important is that there is stability from the PCB chairman and the committee and that hasn’t always been the case in Pakistan and that hasn’t helped the players,” Boycott told PakPassion in an interview.

“There’s usually been trouble at mill and I’ve always felt that if you were in the Pakistan team long enough you’d get dropped, reinstated and at some stage you would become captain, because at one stage everybody got a chance to become captain and that isn’t a recipe for success. You need to have stability behind the scenes and not have all this in-fighting going on in the background. What is happening behind the scenes is important for what happens on the field.

“What has happened at times is that if you were dropped and you had an influential uncle then you’d phone him up and he’d interfere and try and get you back into the team. It’s very difficult when you have all that going on and the environment it creates is not a healthy one.

“Look at the example of Younis Khan, how many times has he been dropped, then recalled, then made captain. He’s had a very up and down career despite being one of Pakistan’s best players.”

Boycott also said that Pakistan’s rise in Test cricket despite being able to play at home was praiseworthy.

“My view on Pakistan cricket has never changed going back to the days when I played. Pakistan has always had youngsters who come through and who nobody has ever heard of, but who have got raw talent,” said Boycott.

“They come from humble beginnings and despite not very good facilities, they have this raw talent and desire to play well and they play very well on surfaces like those in the UAE which are similar to what they have back home in Pakistan. I’m not surprised that Pakistan keeps producing world-class cricketers as the country is very passionate about cricket.”