An account of a famous win and way forward…
Pakistanis were so jubilant and swamped with the occasion that none of us wanted end of victorious mood; just fancy this fervor continues for ever… Everyone had a story to tell about celebrations of this victory over India. The same night, we (here in Doha-Qatar) also went for Sehri Treat in a Pakistani restaurant named Punjab restaurant and witnessed an awesome atmosphere. Big screen was showing Pakistani channels presenting stats of final match and you could well hear commentary from each table. A large group of about 30-35 people were especially out there having party time. Giggles, itching here and there poking each other with some meaningful jokes enjoying Pakistan’s victory. Smiling for no reason! We could well see that people belonging to almost all provinces were present there united under the cause of cricket. This is a very special thing related with sport of cricket. It’s a rare sight seen after the Pakistan’s triumph of World T20 in 2009.
When our team started playing as a unit, you could easily see the unseen forces working in our favor. Rain rescued our weak batting lineup against South-Africa. Sarfaraz survived 2 dropped catches in a must win against Sri-Lanka where it was almost over for our team. Famous NO ball by Bumrah and Fakhar Zaman got a new life to post a maiden TON. Then Muhammad Hafeez’s stumps got in tact despite being hit by the ball. Allah (SWT) helped when team got united and put all their efforts for winning matches in holy month of Ramzan. And they were humble enough to recognize this unseen phenomenon thanking first Almighty Allah and then explaining all formal tactics and strategies behind their performances. What a sight it was for Pakistani fans and cricket lovers all over the world to see unpredictable team Pakistan, emerging from lowest ranking and shaking confidence of best teams of the world.
A very unique aspect of this young Pakistani team is the simplicity and innocence displayed by players including the captain. No attitude, no arrogance! Short interesting videos started erupting from the very next day and still continuing. They respectfully entertained all the spectators greeting them at all places and were seen with their old friends. Captain came out of his home to gift his cricket shirt to a blind special child, we saw his simple wear and Ulti Topi. Sarfaraz kept on praising his boys wherever he went, that’s a sign of a true leader. Rumman Raees was spotted assisting common people on a street Iftari organized in some old area of Karachi. Hassan Ali celebrating with people of Gujranwala, land of Pehalwans now introduced as hometown of a hardworking fast bowler. Fakhar Zaman enjoying a causual full dressed Shalwar Qameez bath in a canal with his friends. Shadab Khan hugged by a random passionate fan at a petrol station and this boy respected elder person giving all due time to speak whatever he wanted to say. All of this is in itself a big delight to watch. Hoping that such attention and fame shall not get on to their minds and they do not get too much carried away. I wish they all remain the same even after gathering more success in future.
Our Amir is Back!
A day before Final match, just randomly I was thinking who could be a match winner for Pakistan in this match. Muhammad Amir was the one name which came into my mind and I tweeted as:
And what an amazing day he had, picking up 3 big players of India. This effort and his excellent batting effort in the game against Sri-Lanka may well be regarded as his complete return to international cricket. He is one of lucky people who played crucial roles in Pakistan’s win in World T20, 2009 and Champions Trophy, 2017. Best wishes to Muhammad Amir from this point, may you have a long, clean and successful career for Pakistan.
Amir, Junaid Khan, Hafeez, Babar Azam and others should also get attention of people and media for their efforts.
Merit, Merit & just Merit
After the first lost against India, it was an amazing turnaround for Pakistan team especially in the fielding department. The way all players were backing up each other and marshaled by Sarfaraz was just awesome. It was a rare sight for an ever suffering Pakistani supporter. Runs they stopped and amazing catches they took were exciting for spectators around the world. They played as a unit! You can not have this thing when there are issues within the team or when some villain is doing his own politics. Within 3 days gap to final, Amir Sohail’s viral statement shocked all of us. Whether we accept it or not, the useless Karachi-Lahore or Karachi-Punjab divide is often seen in Pakistan’s cricket. But the good thing was that Ex-players like Wasim Akram & Basit Ali came to rescue our boys with their positive messages. The special thing in this Champions trophy is the overwhelming response from all corners. Whole Pakistan owned this team throughout series of events.
Good cricketing facilities should be provided all over the country and Deserving talented players to be given fair chance because if you do not give them chance, favoritism will doom everything because there is no replacement for merit. I would request that anything that happened in past should be buried and national team to be selected on merit and supported from all cricketers regardless of their belonging to any city or region. That’s the only way forward!
Role of Pakistan Super League
To be honest, one should give due credit to all people who were involved in organizing Pakistan Super League (PSL) from which we got some exciting players. PSL franchise owners also seem to be passionate about the cause. Like Karachi Kings, other teams should also arrange Talent hunt camps within their regions and present talented players at PSL stage. I suggest few more teams like Hyderabad, Faisalabad & Sialkot etc should be added to PSL. A final topping to PSL; Cricket team named ‘Kashmir’ representing whole Kashmir valley must be added in PSL.
There is no doubt that India has played a big role in bringing our cricket down. We can also not forget how Pakistani players were humiliated during action in the initial versions of Indian Premier League (IPL). That later led to formation of PSL and now we got talented players who beat India in the Champions trophy final. I would strongly suggest, Pakistani cricketers should never be permitted from our side to play in IPL and we must strive to make PSL a world’s leading cricket league with innovations and Pakistani talent in action.
Winning the Champions trophy is not the end of achievements, it’s just a beginning. Lot of things needs to be fixed within our cricketing system. PCB should not be running under government ruling, it needs to be an autonomous body. Reforms should be made to Domestic structure, sponsors should be invited and attractive atmosphere to be created for public viewing. School and college cricket should be revived as a campaign enticing our young generation to spend more time on ground activities rather to be engaged to social media all the time. We always had a weak and vulnerable batting lineup. I am of a belief that it is due to lack of big play grounds, children play in streets and constrained environment with local rules of street cricket so batsmen cannot play their shots freely. Another reason is expansive kit for batsmen and majority of us are happy in bowling rather than exploring our batting skills. So, some serious measures need to be taken to produce quality batsmen with good techniques, power hitters in particular.
It was so romantic to see Pakistan team overcoming their fears and play like Tigers. I hope all of us are mature enough to capitalize on success from this point onwards. Thank you team Pakistan for giving us MOKA MOKA & providing unforgettable moments of joy…
Article No. 58
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