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  1. #1
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    Did Saeed Anwar, Waqar Younis and Wasim Akram retire too soon?

    2003 WC - Never Forget, the year where our decline in cricket truly began. Folks say we went into transition after that, but which transition lasts 13 years??

    I think the board at that time didn't realize it was discarding 3 of the greatest players, and one of the last to don the Pakistani kit. Especially the opener, who is our greatest in ODIs ever.

    Saeed Anwar was in form, had struck a sparkling 100 vs India. Could've paired someone like Yasir Hameed with him to be groomed under his wings, and become a mainstay for us.

    Wasim and Waqar could've groomed talented youngsters at the time like Sami, Gul, Iftikhar Rao etc.

    Age wise they weren't that old either. Anwar was like 34, Waqar was only 32!! Still had 3 years in them at least.

    This is not how you treat your legends who gave you their blood and sweat for more than a decade. If we had a saner chairman at the time like Shahryar, could've been smooth sailing from there.
    Last edited by Suleiman; 21st March 2016 at 02:43.

  2. #2
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    No, they were past it in 2003 World Cup

  3. #3
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    Not only they were way past their prime but Pak team was pretty decent from post 2003Wc to the begining of the 2007 one.

    everything changed because of the politics that took place in 2007 and the iconic status that was given by the media to inconsistent players like Afridi.

  4. #4
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    When Afridi became the senior most player in the Pakistan dressing room ,the trouble started, things were still decent till inzi was in charge

  5. #5
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    They all deserved to be thrown out, the rebuilding process should've started years before. The "mighty 90s" team had been waning for at least three years with embarrassing defeats to England and Sri Lanka at home amongst other poor results.

    Not to mention the infighting which Wasim and Waqar were instigating.

  6. #6
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    Pakistan Cricket biggest problem has been that they have 4 major problem that exists in their system which has not only damaged Pakistan Cricket but had an effect on it for a long term.

    1. PCB is running by crooks and people with zero experience running cricket in the country for the last 20 years. Shahrayar Khan is 80 year old man running our cricket seriously 80 years old. Why cant PCB run someone by like Zaheer Abbas, Wasim Akram, Amir Sohail. Then you intikhab alam the man is still with Pakistan cricker when wasim and waqar was 19 years old. If you need mentor why not brave batsmen like Ijaz Ahmed or Inzamam.

    2. Captaincy has been a joke PCB was so afraid after 2010 spot fixing scandal that they didnt trust any young player as a captain after that. Shahid Afridi was a joke of player but then yet he was selected because he is senior pro, i mean why did he deserves to be captain when he coudnt even guarantee a place in the team. Mohammed Hafeez to me was the excellent choice as a captain and he should have been persisted with because he needed a time we lost in 2014 due he wasnt given a choice to select players he wanted.

    3. Domestic structure has never been given important at all, we are worried where is the talent but when you have a weak system to find talent then how can you expect good players come and play for Pakistan. We have been lucky to find some good players that is due to luck or may be someone like wasim or some ex player spotted them.

    4. Consistency i mean when did we have one set of players playing for Pakistan for a long run except Test Cricket and look at the results v good. Its all about backing individuals and taking them through learning process and developing time. Pakistan problem should not just start appearing when we lose to India but overall WE NEED GREAT MINDS TO RUN OUR CRICKET PPL WITH EXPERIENCE AND ABILITY TO IDENTIFY TALENT. IF WE WANT TO MATCH INDIA OR AUSTRALIA WE NEED TO PREPARE PLAYERS FROM DOMESTIC LEVEL ON TO BE A PERFOMERS. UNTIL CORRUPTION EXIST IN PAKISTAN CRICKET WE CAN NEVER PROSPER IN ANY WHERE FOR COUNTRY OR SPORTS.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suleiman View Post
    2003 WC - Never Forget, the year where our decline in cricket truly began. Folks say we went into transition after that, but which transition lasts 13 years??

    I think the board at that time didn't realize it was discarding 3 of the greatest players, and one of the last to don the Pakistani kit. Especially the opener, who is our greatest in ODIs ever.

    Saeed Anwar was in form, had struck a sparkling 100 vs India. Could've paired someone like Yasir Hameed with him to be groomed under his wings, and become a mainstay for us.

    Wasim and Waqar could've groomed talented youngsters at the time like Sami, Gul, Iftikhar Rao etc.

    Age wise they weren't that old either. Anwar was like 34, Waqar was only 32!! Still had 3 years in them at least.

    This is not how you treat your legends who gave you their blood and sweat for more than a decade. If we had a saner chairman at the time like Shahryar, could've been smooth sailing from there.
    Wasim played way too many ODIs and definitely quit Tests too soon. He was mentally weaker than Waqar who refused to give up in 1999-2000 and he changed his game and continued playing until 2003. Waqar could have played for maybe 1-2 years.

    Wasim, if he was managed properly, with his lack of reliance on pace, could have played Tests until 2004 (he quit in 2002). With regards to ODIs, he probably could've played until 2005-06. Imran was 39 playing in the 1992 world cup, Wasim would've been 40 in 2007 world cup.

    Saeed Anwar suffered a lot after the death of his daughter. We wasted him for a couple of years at the beginning of his career, and he probably could've played 2-3 years after 2003, but he was mentally finished.

  8. #8
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    Things could've been different but the way our players were handled, they ended up being past it by 2003. So it was a completely right thing to dump them all after the world cup.

  9. #9
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    Pakistan problem has been that first Miabah came to late to the scene, he should have been made Captain after that India tour in 2007. We deserved more time of this fantastic man who had great captaincy ethics and professionalism. I hope we can find someone like him again. We had a bad 2015 WC because of our poor batting line up. But overall I believe we must trust Safraz now and give him the captaincy and leave him alone for atleast 2 years. I DONT UNDERSTAND WHY PPL ARE BEING TOO JUDGMENTAL AFTER T20 MICKEY MOUSE GAME TOURNAMENT WE HAVE BIGGER TEST AHEAD OF US ENG AND AUS TOUR WE NEED TO PREPARE OURSELF FOR THOSE TOURS WHICH CAN MAKE PLAYERS A STAR PLAYERS. Players like Umar akmal and Babar Azam must be included in test tour of England. They are fantastic batsmen need a good captain to use them effectively.

  10. #10
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    It's actually the exact opposite. Wasim and Waqar should've retired by 99.

  11. #11
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    Chachi ji thet are retired now...so whats the point of mentioning them.

  12. #12
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    Maybe Saeed Anwar

    The other two were way past their prime.


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  13. #13
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    There's noway that's Waqar Younis' real age. He's definitely got some nigerian birth certificate.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diffusion View Post
    There's noway that's Waqar Younis' real age. He's definitely got some nigerian birth certificate.
    WAQAR, Afridi, butt, Sarfraz each had at least 4 years of age that is not shown on their birth certificate.

    This still is a problem till players who stayed playing first class till mid 2000's hopefully it's happening less now than in past.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diffusion View Post
    There's noway that's Waqar Younis' real age. He's definitely got some nigerian birth certificate.
    Bro he was definitely 32. Didn't have a single wrinkle on his face, looked like a stallion.

    Trust me, I can tell ages from TV.

  16. #16
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    I challenge those who said Saeed Anwar was finished, couple of points to consider in my argument:

    1. His last innings was a 100
    2. If he wasn't fit as an opener, could he not have played easily in the middle order like no.4, would have been
    great to see Anwar walk at 4 so reassuring. Remember Sehwag batted in the middle order during twilight of his career

    He had couple of years left in him when he was forcibly dragged out of the game, I still remember that furious email that I had written to Bob Woolmer back then asking for his explanation on dropping Saeed Anwar but unfortunately Bob had no answers.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by indian_sap View Post
    I challenge those who said Saeed Anwar was finished, couple of points to consider in my argument:

    1. His last innings was a 100
    2. If he wasn't fit as an opener, could he not have played easily in the middle order like no.4, would have been
    great to see Anwar walk at 4 so reassuring. Remember Sehwag batted in the middle order during twilight of his career

    He had couple of years left in him when he was forcibly dragged out of the game, I still remember that furious email that I had written to Bob Woolmer back then asking for his explanation on dropping Saeed Anwar but unfortunately Bob had no answers.
    What did Bob Woolmer have to do with Anwar's exclusion? Anwar retired in 2003, Woolmer became coach in 2004.

    Regardless, Anwar's heart was just not in cricket anymore. It tells now, he wants nothing to do with the game at all, he doesn't even come on tv for cricketing interviews.

  18. #18
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    I don't remember the exact era but Anwars exclusion was close to Bobs era hence the question to Bob. According to some statements back in 2003, I strongly feel that Anwar was forced to retire from d game it wasn't his decision. What a shame on PCB.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by indian_sap View Post
    I don't remember the exact era but Anwars exclusion was close to Bobs era hence the question to Bob. According to some statements back in 2003, I strongly feel that Anwar was forced to retire from d game it wasn't his decision. What a shame on PCB.
    There were 30 ODI's and about 10+ tests between Anwar's last game and bob era. Also a guy names JM who was there.

  20. #20
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    1. Saeed Anwar:
    Yes, one of the most tolling premature exit. Her daughter's death and tableghi stuff is to blame. He shouldn't have cheated his own profession though, the one who made him who he is today. He was such a classy opener.


    2. Wasim Akram: As much as we wanted to play him for long, it was obvious that his health was giving up. He wasn't dynamic at all in his last few games. He barely played 2003's WC to cross 500 mark. But no body had a clue that Pakistan would decline that badly after him & Waqar's retirement.

    3. Waqar Younis: Had an year or two left in him. But with new-ball rule, not so good captain and lack of competitiveness without a quality pairing bowler ended his career prematurely. I can also hint Justice Qayyum's reporrlt could be the silent reason for that. I doubt that he would have made much of a difference by playing more any more than what Amir is doing for Pakistan team.

    Saeed Anwar and Saqlain Mushtaq are the ones with painful premature exits that hurted Pakistan in the longer run. Waqar's misutilization was during the mid of his career thanks to team politics of Wasim VS Waqar.


  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by abc_to_xyz View Post
    1. Saeed Anwar:
    Yes, one of the most tolling premature exit. Her daughter's death and tableghi stuff is to blame. He shouldn't have cheated his own profession though, the one who made him who he is today. He was such a classy opener.


    2. Wasim Akram: As much as we wanted to play him for long, it was obvious that his health was giving up. He wasn't dynamic at all in his last few games. He barely played 2003's WC to cross 500 mark. But no body had a clue that Pakistan would decline that badly after him & Waqar's retirement.

    3. Waqar Younis: Had an year or two left in him. But with new-ball rule, not so good captain and lack of competitiveness without a quality pairing bowler ended his career prematurely. I can also hint Justice Qayyum's reporrlt could be the silent reason for that. I doubt that he would have made much of a difference by playing more any more than what Amir is doing for Pakistan team.

    Saeed Anwar and Saqlain Mushtaq are the ones with painful premature exits that hurted Pakistan in the longer run. Waqar's misutilization was during the mid of his career thanks to team politics of Wasim VS Waqar.
    What has an individuals personal interests gotto do with his Cricket? I don't understand why people naively bring Tableeghi or any other personal stuff on here...there are umpteen tableeghis playing in the international arena and let me remind you they are amongst the best going around...just in Cricket, we have Hashim, Inzi, Moeen and Imran Tahir to name a few. Hence please don't target individuals personal interests as an excuse for his failures.

    There are also other people with huge personal interests (Clubbing etc) like Gayle and Bravo and Yuvraj amongst the best in the game, they don't allow their personal lives to bother their professional commitments hence they are still the best on the field.

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    Quote Originally Posted by carrom_ball View Post
    No, they were past it in 2003 World Cup
    True. It was the 1999 WC where I last saw our team peaking like a champ. Although team won few all-important cups/series after that (including beating world champs Aus 2-1 in Aus) but the team never really looked settled after 1999 WC's final loss. That invincibility that Wasim and Co had brought (Much like Dhoni these days) faded after 1999. Maybe bcuz they were old, maybe bcuz they were dented by the reaction (fixed or not). For me, Saeed Anwar scoring 100+ and Shoaib Akhtar yorking 3 top order batsmen (all against NZ in semi) was the last time that team showed their championism and was the last time I felt that we can beat anyone if we desire.

    2003's campaign was bound to be a failure as it was packed of almost goners (legends though). Looking back now, I feel like a fool when I expected them to win against India back then.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by indian_sap View Post
    What has an individuals personal interests gotto do with his Cricket? I don't understand why people naively bring Tableeghi or any other personal stuff on here...there are umpteen tableeghis playing in the international arena and let me remind you they are amongst the best going around...just in Cricket, we have Hashim, Inzi, Moeen and Imran Tahir to name a few. Hence please don't target individuals personal interests as an excuse for his failures.

    There are also other people with huge personal interests (Clubbing etc) like Gayle and Bravo and Yuvraj amongst the best in the game, they don't allow their personal lives to bother their professional commitments hence they are still the best on the field.
    But he was compelled to leave cricket. Even Inzamam went over-board with that stuff around 2005-2007 but thankfully he never asked anyone to leave cricket for that.

    Main cause was the death of his daughter, which resulted in lack of interest in cricket while an irrational rise of interest in religious-deeds.

  24. #24
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    Instead of pointing out x y z being over the hill as the reason losing the WC's fans need to look at the real reason why team does not do well in WC's and that reason is the fascination of players to retire after winning the WC so that they can be at same level as IK.

    Wasim should not have been around after 2000-2001 but he wanted to win another WC so he keep getting selected by PCB to fulfill his wish.

    Inzi should not have gone beyond India series 2006, his performance in Eng tour that summer was indicating that he was over the hill but the desire to leave after winning WC kept him in the team.

    Afridi/Misbah should have quit before WC15 too.

    Same pattern can be seen in Misbah's decision to continue on as to him (being test captain) winning test series in Eng is equivalent of winning the WC. His (in)ability to bat against pace/swing was badly exposed against the Eng last winter alongwith YK's but they both do not want to leave without touring Eng this summer.

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    Saeed Anwar was mentally finished after the death of his daughter.

    No one forced his hand.

    His heart was not in the game anymore and he took the honorable way out.

    Wasim and Waqar were declining and they went probably at the right time.


    And I get so high.. And I just can't feel it....

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suleiman View Post
    Bro he was definitely 32. Didn't have a single wrinkle on his face, looked like a stallion.

    Trust me, I can tell ages from TV.
    Yeah sometimes people get too skeptical about player ages for Pakistani players. Sure some have definitely fudged them in the past but not all people mature the same way. Someone may hit puberty at 12 years or even as early as 10 (I've seen a couple). There are also others who don't hit their growth spurt until 17-18.
    Some people just look older than others due to several factors.

    People question Afridi's age but he's definitely 36. Might be a year or two older at most. Look back at his 37 ball hundred against Sri Lanka, completely fresh faced, definitely a teenager at the time.

    Some people questioned Mohammad Aamir's age, the way he has come back proves his age is genuine.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by AamirWarraich View Post
    Yeah sometimes people get too skeptical about player ages for Pakistani players. Sure some have definitely fudged them in the past but not all people mature the same way. Someone may hit puberty at 12 years or even as early as 10 (I've seen a couple). There are also others who don't hit their growth spurt until 17-18.
    Some people just look older than others due to several factors.

    People question Afridi's age but he's definitely 36. Might be a year or two older at most. Look back at his 37 ball hundred against Sri Lanka, completely fresh faced, definitely a teenager at the time.

    Some people questioned Mohammad Aamir's age, the way he has come back proves his age is genuine.
    Afridi was 21 at debut.

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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlphaFighter View Post
    Afridi was 21 at debut.

    Sent from my SM-G925W8 using Tapatalk
    That's what the graphic at the time said, but he said in interviews later that year that he was 16. He certainly didn't look 21 to me at the time.

    Though right now he is certainly playing as if he is 41! (Huge respect to Misbah for maintaining his fitness, our younger players should be ashamed)

  29. #29
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    Wasim and Waqar Should have retired after 1999 WC... Anwar was mental down after daughter, he was more into Tableegh, his retirement was understandable...

    Post 2000 PCB invested in wrong kind of players Afridi, Razaq, Malik, Hafeez kind of players really killed cricketing culture, these are all bits and pieces cricketing non of them has primary skill...

    Before that we had never seen allrounder to become important player or cultural icon... Imran and Wasim were world class bowlers, these guys have no skill, they just not only survive but become main icon and Captain, that is death sentence to cricket when you start making nothing players Captain and Icon players...

    Second problem was out batsmen stop playing county cricket, our batsmen were never developed in FC, it was always county cricket... Lately nobody plays county cricket (after MoYo), resulting in pretty poor technique...

    Thirdly, after spot fixing we stopped trusting in youngsters, Misbah hates them, he will find the oldest guy in FC and play him over young guy, PCB likes it because you have character certificate and police record of 35 years, this means junk of FC is recycled through national team...

    Playing in UAE is another killer... If we keep playing in UAE, cricket will be dead sports in Pakistan by 2030, absolutely worse place to play test cricket, does not matter we win or draw all series, it's boring as hell to watch those test... Wait till you watch Amir bowl in UAE, you will all be cursing these wickets...


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    Saeed ANwar age wise yes but he had totally lost the desire as a sportsman. I thought it was incredible that he hit that hundred against us in 2003 while clearly not being even half of his former self.


    Wasim, come on man he was on his last legs as a bowler. Was still competent because such is the class of Wasim, he bowled recently as a 50 year old and still looked better than Bhuvneshwar Kumar lol but his time was up for sure.


    Waqar, the same. Just like Wasim, its the class that got him going till 2003 wc but he had lost it long ago.


    Overall, 3 amazing players,

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    Saeed Anwar was big loss as he looked in very good touch in 2003 WC. He had atleast 3- years of cricket left in him. But as people said his heart wasn't in the game. Wasim Akram was clearly past his prime but he could still damage lower ranked sides. He wasn't threat to better batsman by then. He could have played 1 more year max. Waqar was bigger loss than Wasim as he looked fit enough for 2 more years atleast. He would have eased pressure on Akhtar.


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    Saeed Anwar may have scored a 100 in his game against India but it was hardly a fluid knock. After his daughter passed I do believe his interest in the game faded and by 2003 he was only playing the game to make ends meet. Waqar could have stayed on another year or 2. Wasim I am not too sure.


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    Quote Originally Posted by AamirWarraich View Post
    That's what the graphic at the time said, but he said in interviews later that year that he was 16. He certainly didn't look 21 to me at the time.

    Though right now he is certainly playing as if he is 41! (Huge respect to Misbah for maintaining his fitness, our younger players should be ashamed)
    watch afridis episode of aik din geo ke saath
    he himself admits hes 3 year older than his official age

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by proud_pakistani View Post
    Saeed Anwar may have scored a 100 in his game against India but it was hardly a fluid knock. After his daughter passed I do believe his interest in the game faded and by 2003 he was only playing the game to make ends meet. Waqar could have stayed on another year or 2. Wasim I am not too sure.
    Yes he wasn't at all in his touch and yet hit a 100 in what was before 2011 semi final the biggest and most hyped up cricket match ever.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by freelance_cricketer View Post
    Yes he wasn't at all in his touch and yet hit a 100 in what was before 2011 semi final the biggest and most hyped up cricket match ever.
    Nailed it beautifully...how could a batsman who just hit a 100 not be in touch lol

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChachaCricket View Post
    It's actually the exact opposite. Wasim and Waqar should've retired by 99.
    Wasim performed splendidly well against WI in 2000 series. Probably one of his best performance.

    Waqar had a brilliant 2001 in ODIs

    Though by 2002 they had lost their spark

    2003 was the logical result of that loss of spark

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeetu View Post
    Saeed Anwar was big loss as he looked in very good touch in 2003 WC. He had atleast 3- years of cricket left in him. But as people said his heart wasn't in the game. Wasim Akram was clearly past his prime but he could still damage lower ranked sides. He wasn't threat to better batsman by then. He could have played 1 more year max. Waqar was bigger loss than Wasim as he looked fit enough for 2 more years atleast. He would have eased pressure on Akhtar.
    Anwar could have played till 2007 WC TBH, but he had lost all the interest in cricket. Even 2003 WC was more of a comeback series for him

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    Quote Originally Posted by freelance_cricketer View Post
    Yes he wasn't at all in his touch and yet hit a 100 in what was before 2011 semi final the biggest and most hyped up cricket match ever.
    You can make fun, but Saeed Anwar had faded by then. It was one good knock. His fitness levels were a big question mark in that World Cup. He could rarely clear the boundary rope either. And compare his 100 with Sachins 98 that day. How fluid and easy on the eyes that was compared to Anwars slightly laboured (by his own standards) 101.


    "Nations are born in the hearts of poets, they prosper and die in the hands of politicians."-Iqbal

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    Quote Originally Posted by indian_sap View Post
    1. His last innings was a 100
    2. If he wasn't fit as an opener, could he not have played easily in the middle order like no.4, would have been
    great to see Anwar walk at 4 so reassuring. Remember Sehwag batted in the middle order during twilight of his career
    Negative. He lived and died by the opening swod.

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    Quote Originally Posted by proud_pakistani View Post
    You can make fun, but Saeed Anwar had faded by then. It was one good knock. His fitness levels were a big question mark in that World Cup. He could rarely clear the boundary rope either. And compare his 100 with Sachins 98 that day. How fluid and easy on the eyes that was compared to Anwars slightly laboured (by his own standards) 101.

    Mate, agree he was slow but damn he had just scored a hundred on a big stage in a world cup...he was coming back after a big lay-off hence needed some extra time in the middle and he would have improved with a few games in the middle...look at Yuvrajs latest comeback, what have we learned from it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Varun View Post
    Negative. He lived and died by the opening swod.
    Sorry there was a lot of talk of accommodating him in the middle order and Sehwag was ready for it but Indian batting order is already so strong that he couldn't find a place.

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    Wasim Akram was finished in Tests by 1999 but was definitely bowling quite well in ODIs. Waqar, apart from that tri series in England was pretty much finished and even in Tests he was only bashing Bangladesh and maybe SL in the period (1998-2003) . Pakistan should have invested in young fast bowlers post 99 WC in both formats but it was not to be.

    Saeed Anwar lost interest in cricket after the passing away of his daughter and he was no longer the opener he was on the 90's anyway.


    'There's a lady who's sure all that glitters is gold'

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    Quote Originally Posted by indian_sap View Post
    Mate, agree he was slow but damn he had just scored a hundred on a big stage in a world cup...he was coming back after a big lay-off hence needed some extra time in the middle and he would have improved with a few games in the middle...look at Yuvrajs latest comeback, what have we learned from it?
    We can not compare Yuvi with Saeed Anwar. Saeed Anwar always had fitness issues and post 2003 it was never going to get better while Yuvi has worked extremely hard to get in shape. If Saeed really wanted to play further he would have gone back to domestic and proven himself. In hindsight tho he would have averaged the same as guys like opened that time. Maybe he could have played on and groomed Imran Farhat and Taufeeq Umar. Who knows they might have been better players at this stage.


    "Nations are born in the hearts of poets, they prosper and die in the hands of politicians."-Iqbal


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