Misbah-ul-Haq: 'Beating the No 1 team is a great effort'

Abu Dhabi

The breathtaking inadequacy England displayed in chasing 145 runs to win this game should not detract from the unity and flair that brought victory to a resurgent Pakistan team.

After the spot-fixing scandal at Lord's in August 2010, Pakistan cricket was in pieces. The rebuilding job effected by their captain Misbah-ul-Haq, 37, has been astonishing.

Under his leadership, Pakistan have lost only one of 14 Tests, winning seven of their last nine. Opponents may have included Zimbabwe, Bangladesh and West Indies but their superiority against Test cricket's top-ranked team was there for all to see here yesterday.

Nineteen of the 20 England wickets fell to spin. Misbah knew that with Saeed Ajmal and Abdur Rehman bowling in tandem, Pakistan would always have a chance to win the game.

"For any team playing against bowlers like Saeed Ajmal and Abdur Rehman on this surface, it's difficult," said Misbah. "You have to play very well against them, and when you are not picking them or seeing which side the ball goes, it's really difficult.

"We were thinking that if we could just put pressure on England, we could make a match of it, so we just thought: 'Let's have a try.' The bowlers did very well and they won this for us. Even in these conditions, beating the No 1 Test team is a great effort.

"It was really difficult to play left-arm spin on this pitch. We saw when England bowled the way that Monty Panesar was spinning the ball and how it was skidding on. Some of the balls were turning and some were skidding on, so it was extremely hard for a batsman to guess what would happen."

Given what happened two summers ago, the matches have been played in a spirit of fairness and the mature, pragmatic Misbah must take substantial credit. Asked if this series victory would allow Pakistan finally to put behind them the Lord's scandal, Misbah said: "It should do. Let's just concentrate on what is happening now."

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss