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It is important for Pakistan to win in Australia: Misbah

By Rashmi Nanda -
Misbah-ul-Haq led Pakistan cricket team were beaten by a 220-run in the third Test by Australia on Saturday (January 7) at the SCG and clinching the Three match Test series with 3-0, which is the 12 straight Test defeats in Australia of Pakistan, for which the skipper blamed the bowlers.

After the Test, Misbah told the press conference, "The last day of the MCG was the biggest disappointment of the tour and we (were) demoralized from that... could not recover. Australia is not an easy place. I think our bowling is always our strength, but in this series, we could not take 20 wickets in any Test match that's why we were behind in every game.” 

He also added, "Normally, we say it is not easy for Asian batsmen to come here and score runs but mainly what I've seen it is difficult for any Asian team to come here and take 20 wickets in a Test. That's an art and we could not do that. That mainly cost us the series."

Pakistan last played in Australia in 2009-10 and the skipper said that the Pakistani needs to get experience in Australia. He added, "I think it is important for us to get experience in these conditions... that we tour more often in Australia and South Africa. It has already been suggested that some of our players should be sent regularly to Australia through the academies... to play games here, practice in these conditions.” 

"Some of the guys who are in line and might be in the team in the next two-three years, they should be sent to South Africa and Australia for one or two months to play some games. This is the only way we can improve otherwise if you are coming here after five or six years than half your team are touring for the first time. Whether it is a bowling or batting unit... you are going to struggle. These conditions are totally different to others."

Misbah said that when you are playing in Australia you need to be fully fit. He added, "In '99, when Pakistan came (to Australia), I think that was one of the strongest (Pakistani) teams ever, strongest bowling attack... so many superstars in the team, but even that time we lost (3-0 to Steve Waugh's impregnable Australian team). It is important (for Pakistan) to win in Australia, you need to get used to the conditions... your fitness plays an important role. In Australia, you need supreme fitness."

In spite of the disappointment, the skipper said that the batting, led by an impressive opener Azhar Ali, was a bright point. He also believes that Pakistan can be extremely spirited in the forthcoming five-match One-Day International series against Australia. 

He stated. "Overall, a lot of positives in the batting... (We had) new faces and a changed mindset.  We can do well... One-Day cricket suits us. It will be a young and exciting team."