Misbah's blueprint to revive reputation
For the final time yesterday, Misbah-ul-Haq, the captain of Pakistan, insisted the past was the past. In the next three weeks the truth of that will become evident and, if it turns out as he hopes and expects, he may never have to address the issue again.
"The main thing I have told the team and the management is you can get your image back only by playing good cricket, by winning, by your good conduct on the field and off the field," he said. "That's what we are trying to do, and I think we are pretty much successful in that, the way we are doing things, the way we are playing for the last year and a half. I think we are on the right path."
Misbah, who took over the Test captaincy after the match-rigging scandal which engulfed Pakistan on their tour of England in 2010, has been dogged by questions in the past fortnight. Although Pakistan have generally been thought to have cleaned up their act since the start of Misbah's tenure, the topic of corruption has arisen because they are playing England again.
Before the match started this morning, Misbah intended to have a word with his counterpart Andrew Strauss about how the teams might approach the series. He might want to move on but he was aware the history between the sides demanded a rapprochement.
"We just want to play in a positive manner," he said. "Whatever we do, we just want to do through our performance. We want a good relationship out of the ground and good contest on the ground. We are focusing on that."
These were platitudes, spoken by a captain slightly weary of the line of questioning, but no more important platitudes will be uttered before a sporting contest this year.
Paul Scholes: Manchester United vs Liverpool - I don't understand why Brendan Rodgers was not more attacking against Basel
Jesus Christ plays for Chelsea - that's what one in five children thinks
Transfer Talk: Nemanja Vidic to return to Manchester United; Hazard to leave Chelsea; Sunderland want Radamel Falcao
Frank Warren column: Don't bet on Amir Khan landing pay day against Floyd Mayweather
Manchester United transfer news: Kevin Strootman move edges closer
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Sony hack: Angelina Jolie branded 'seriously out of her mind' in further embarrassing leaked email saga
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food