1) Not losing the test series. Not losing a test.
We won our 3rd test series by a 1-0 score line during the year and also Misbah won his 7th series as captain across all formats of the game in 9 series as captain to go along with 2 drawn series with only 1 defeat in 10 tests as captain after all the dramas the team had gone through. He has only been defeated once in 19 internationals as captain. He had led Pakistan to 3 test series wins this year which they have certainly not done ever since 2006 and they hadn’t won a single test series in 2007,2008,2009,2010 or won one outside the sub continent between 2004-2010, but this year he has not only won 3, but won them all outside the sub continent. It was Pakistan’s first major test series win against a top ranked side since Asif’s magic in 2006 (excluding New Zealand and West Indies).
Pakistan remains on 6th position in the rankings, but narrowly closes the gap between Australia and Sri Lanka who are in 4th and 5th position respectively. They gain 4 points from the result whereas Sri Lanka loses 5. Sri Lanka have had a 1-0 defeat in their last 3 test series this year against England, Australia and now Pakistan. After 14 tests after Murali they are yet to win with 4 defeats in that space of time and 10 draws.
2) No controversies.
None at all.
3) 3/6 LOI wins and therefore winning either the T20 or ODI leg of the tour.
Commences on Friday. Expectations might be even higher considering the test series triumph.
5/6 wins. Unlike England and Australia, Pakistan successfully managed to defeat the Sri Lankans 4-1 in the 5 match one day series as well as win all 3 formats and that too fairly comprehensively with more or less the same strengh Sri Lankan side.
4) Posting totals above 330 every time in the 1st innings minimum. Innings duration should be at least 125 overs.
511/6 | 403 | 340
5) 3 centuries from Pak preferably from Azhar/Asad.
~Double ton to Taufeeq.
~Maiden ton to Azhar.
~YK’s first of 2011.
6) Maintaining the Hafeez, Taufeeq, Azhar, YK, Misbah, Shafiq combination throughout the 3 tests successfully.
7) The tail WAGGING. Seeing totals of around 100+ for the last 4 wickets consistently.
8) Playing 2 specialist spinners in all 3 tests with the idea continuing to work as it has been doing. 25 wickets between them. Economy of below 3 combined.
Rehman was left out of the series opener. 23 wickets combined nonetheless. Both bowled accurately and economically.
9) Adnan – maiden test 50 and tidy before behind the stumps.
Got into the 40s. Only had 2 innings. 11 dismissals.
10) Seeing out around 4/5 full sessions in the series without losing a wicket. We will be on track shall this happen. Batsmen putting a price on their wicket and batting for long periods of time. Getting stuck in and digging in deep which they are fully capable with the current mould of players.
3 full sessions without losing a wicket.
11) 2500 BF between numbers 3 and 6 in the 3 tests. Azhar Ali achieving a 750 BF as his speciality is his patience and grinding out the bowling. The middle order demonstrating their solidity, application and determination to spend extended periods of time at the wicket and work over the Sri Lankans with their discipline, mindset, attitude and mental toughness. Showing plenty of grit, stamina, concentration and resilience which are the leading strengths of this gutsy middle order. Working their socks off to frustrate and tire out to their opponents with their commanding structures and temperament. Giving them some tough days out in the field even if this means it won’t be the most eventful in terms of scoring. Basically, winning the sessions gradually by playing the hard fought waiting games as opposed to trying to play the enforcer role. That’s when they have been playing their best. I would like to see more of that here.
1966 BF between 3-6, but they never had a proper 2nd innings due to their surprising dominance so unless they bat for eternity in the 1st innings, it was never really possible. They achieved well over 2500 if you include the balls faced by the opener Taufeeq Umar as well though. Azhar Ali faced the 2nd most with 722 behind Taufeeq Umar but that was inflated with his 496 ball innings in the 1st test.
12) Several hundred partnerships/stands. More than the Lankans in this aspect.
Pakistan had 5.
Mohammad Hafeez and Taufeeq Umar in Abu Dhabi.
Taufeeq Umar and Azhar Ali in Dubai.
Younis Khan and Azhar Ali in Dubai.
Azhar Ali and Misbah-ul-Haq in Dubai.
Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan in Sharjah.
Sri Lanka had 3, only had 1 in the 1st innings whereas Pakistan had all their 5 in the 1st innings.
Sanga and T in Dubai.
Sanga and Prasana in Dubai.
Sanga and Dilshan in Sharjah.
13) Rehman racking up 40 maidens and keeping the Sri Lankans under control with his perseverance and nagging lengths.
27 maidens, but only played the two tests.
14) 3 Pak batsmen scoring 300 odd in this series from the top 6. This will be another reflection that we are on track.
It was a collective team effort. Limited opportunities to bat in the 2nd innings. Look at comment #16. 4 of the top 5 run getters in the series were Pakistani.
15) Herath having a SR in the 90+ region. Making him work and toil. Wearing him out. Reduce his impact and seeing him out. He is the dangerman and we will do well to keep him quiet from making inroads in the context of the match. Blocking him out firmly and watchfully to an extent where his wickets will barely have an impact in changing the complexion of the match. Making him bowl the marathon spells.
Average: 32. SR in the 100s. In contrast Pakistan’s premier spinner had a SR of 68 and averaged in the 20s.
16) Captain averaging above 50 in the series. All the top 6 with averages of above 35. Hafeez is a concern, but could compensate for it if he chips in with the wickets and breaking partnerships.
Azhar Ali: 66
Younis Khan: 55
Asad Shafiq: 54
17) Preventing Dilshan from averaging above 35 with bat and below 40 with the ball. Keeping their skipper on the quiet side of proceedings which will affect the team’s body language and emotions. Making life tough for the opposite number and going hard at him.
22 with the bat, 69 with the ball.
18) Preventing Jaya+Sanga putting on 150 together should the 2 bat together whereas Misbah and YK do as and when they bat together. These are the influential partnerships to break for both teams. Experienced and statistically high achieving batsmen who tend to bat well in pairs with their understanding of each other.
Jaya+Sanga were with each other 3 times in the series and failed to put on 100 together whereas Misbah and YK were only together once in the series and piled on over 100 for the 4th wicket stand.
19) Taking more wickets combined than their pacers by a margin of around 5 at least. There is little doubt we have a stronger pace battery despite the losses of AA combo for obvious reasons.
28 for the hosts.
Umar Gul - 14
Junaid Khan - 12
Aizaz Cheema - 2
Sri Lanka had only 16.
Difference of 12 and Sri Lanka went into all 3 tests with 3 seamers whereas Pakistan only went in with 2 pacers in the final two tests. Yet Pakistan were clearly the superior bowling attack who dominated the series and were much more effective than the Sri Lankans. Junaid Khan was playing only his 2nd test series as well. Gul has 27 scalps from 6 tests this year.
20) Crossing 450 mark at least once during the series. Batting for the best part of 2 days when we bat first.
21) 50+ opening combo from openers at least twice during the test series and doing better than the Lankans in this aspect.
Pakistan did it twice. Sri Lanka did not do it even once.
22) 50 from batsmen 8-11 at least once i.e. Wahab, Rehman.
Wahab was not played in any.
Rehman was dismissed cheaply in his 2 innings.
Ajmal averaged 32 with the bat nevertheless and was even promoted up the order as the night-watchman.
23) Hafeez showing he is not a minnow basher throughout the course of the tour. Proving his credentials against his Asian rivals. Adding a few more to his 8 MOM tally this year.
Averaged approximately 50 in the test series.
24) Cleaning up their last 4 for approximately 60/70 consistently max during the tests.
25) Coming to terms with the new playing conditions in ODIs, especially the use of BPP between overs 15-40. Get a head start over other nations.
26) Posting an ODI total of 280+ during the series.
27) Average score of above 40 in BPP at the expense of 2 wickets most.
28) Malinga countering. Keeping him under 8 wickets during the 5 match ODI series. Using the depth in the crease, trapping the late swing, picking the slower ball, seeing him off in his initial spells not allowing him to settle or get his confidence high. Avoidance of a 2/2 which he is able to do frequently. Wahab to shatter the furniture more times than him during the series!
Only 7 for him
29) Winning an ODI by 100 runs or 5 wickets.
30) 45+ in first 6 during the 20/20 for a maximum of 1 down.
Most runs Pak: Azhar/Misbah
Azhar was 2nd with Taufeeq’s 236 always putting him in the lead although that was his only 50+ score in the series; Misbah on the other hand only had 3 completed innings due to Pakistan’s dominance.
Most runs Sri Lanka: Sanga/Jaya
King Sanga topped the series charts with over 500 accumulated. The 2nd highest by a Sri Lankan batsman in a single test series.
Most wickets: No idea but probably Ajmal
Correct by a considerable distance
MOTS: A Pak 3-6 batsmen
Ajmal got his 2nd MOTS of the year, but it was shared with King Sanga.
Most runs Pak: YK
Most runs Sri Lanka: Thranga
Most wickets Pak: Wahab/Cheema
Umar Gul IMO. Wahab is not in the ODI squad for reasons relating to further spot fixing investigations after the trio were found guilty and therefore has not been excluded on merit.
Most wickets Sri Lanka: Malinga
MOTS: Mohammad Hafeez/Thranga
Afridi it was
MOM: Dilshan/Gul/Umar Akmal/Ajmal/Malinga
Aizaz Cheema 4-0-30-4 in his 2nd t20 at international level
Most catches throughout tour by Pak player: YK/Misbah
It was these two
YK topped the charts in the test series followed up by Misbah.