Pakistan cricket’s go-to man for almost every situation Misbah-ul-Haq announced his retirement from international cricket on Thursday.
The 42-year old will lead Pakistan for one final time in the upcoming three-match Test series against West Indies, which starts from 21st April. He made the announcement about his decision at an official press conference in Lahore. He had already retired from ODIs and T20Is after the Pakistan’s early exit from the 2015 World Cup.
Widely hailed as the greatest captain in the history of Pakistan cricket – Misbah was recently felicitated by the ever-so-prestigious bible of cricket (Wisden Almanac). He was named among the Wisden’s prestigious ‘Five Cricketers of the Year’. Misbah added that he will continue to play cricket at domestic level and will continue his cricket activities for the time being.
The Mianwali-born cricketer received a lot of flak at home and in cricket circles after Pakistan’s disastrous tours of the Tasmanian land. Pakistan lost six consecutive Test matches after being comprehensively beaten by Australia and New Zealand by 3-0 and 2-0 respectively.
Skipper Misbah’s own form with the bat was a major cause for concern for the sub-continent nation. He played only one Test on the New Zealand tour. He played three Test against Australia but managed only 76 runs at a poor average of 12.66.
— Follow Your Sport (@followyoursport) May 28, 2016
During the time of spot-fixing scandal in 2010, Misbah was handed over reins of the depleted side which was ranked sixth in ICC Test team rankings. Misbah has made 72 Test appearances for Pakistan so far, scoring 4951 runs at an average of close to 46, includes 10 centuries and 36 fifties. He is currently seventh on the list of Pakistan’s highest Test run-getters.
Here’s a look at some of the captaincy records held by Misbah-ul-Haq as the skipper of Pakistan team:
53 Tests (and counting) – Misbah-ul-Haq holds the record for leading Pakistan for the maximum number of time in the cricket’s longer format. Former skipper Imran Khan had led Pakistan in 48 Tests between 1982 and 1992.
24 wins – It is the most number of victories registered by a Pakistani skipper in Test cricket. Misbah has led Pakistan to 24 wins in 53 matches. Imran Khan and Javed Miandad won 14 Tests each as captain.
45.28% – The best winning percentage by a Pakistani skipper who has led the team in minimum 30 Tests.
10 series wins as captain – Misbah led Pakistan to 10 series victories as skipper which is also the most by an Asian captain. India’s MS Dhoni and Sourav Ganguly had nine series wins. The next best among Pakistan captains is eight by Javed Miandad.
Forty 50+ scores – Misbah registered forty 50 or more scores as Pakistan captain. Only one batsman has made more 50-plus scores over the same period – England’s Alastair Cook has 45 such scores.
53 Tests – Misbah led Pakistan in 53 Tests as captain, interestingly he was handed over the captaincy after the age of 35. No one over 35 has led in more Test matches as compared to Misbah. Former Windies skipper Clive Lloyd is second on the list with 45 matches as captain after the age of 35. Misbah has led in 21 Tests after turning 40, which is eight more than WG Grace.
56 balls – Misbah shares the record for the joint second fastest century in Test cricket along with the great Sir Viv Richards. He scored a 56-ball hundred vs Australia. He is also the oldest captain in the history of Test cricket to score a century.
21 balls – Misbah-ul-Haq has scored the fastest 50 in Test cricket. He scored 50 in 21 balls against Australia.
Misbah-ul-Haq guided Pakistan to the number one spot in the International Cricket Council (ICC) Test rankings for the very first time in June 2016. Pakistan was at the sixth spot when Misbah was handed over the captaincy in 2010.
An outstanding servant of the game – Misbah’s presence will be missed by the cricket fans all over the world.
Pakistan’s Dynamic Duo Retire: