Misbah backs team to create history in series Down Under
Melbourne [Australia], Dec. 13 (ANI): Pakistan Test skipper Misbah-ul-Haq has backed his current team to create history and become the first Asian side to win a Test series in Australia in the three-match series beginning Thursday.
The Steve Smith-led side are coming off a terrible series against South Africa wherein they lost the three-match series 1-2, and even though they demolished New Zealand in an ODI series, their red ball form is what counts coming into this series.
On the other hand, Pakistan also suffered a 0-2 series whitewash against the Black Caps.
Expressing his views about the series Down Under, Misbah said, "It goes without saying that Australia is a very challenging place to tour. It is arguably toughest of all the countries along with South Africa because of the bounce and pace in the wickets. Maybe that is why no Asian side has ever won a Test series at these two places and that will be a huge motivation for us."
"Many great Pakistan teams have been to these shores before but left without winning so our goal in this series will be to conquer an unchartered territory. I feel this team has the potential to be the first Pakistan side to win a Test series in Australia. It has been a good experience to arrive here a couple of weeks before the series starts," the 42-year-old was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au.
Speaking about the tour-day game against Victoria XI in Cairns which his side won, the skipper said, "It was also good to have a practice match in Cairns but the conditions there were totally different from what we are going to get in Brisbane."
"The pitch there was little slow and less bouncy whereas the opposition was very inexperienced. But it gave our batsmen and bowlers an opportunity to spend time on the field and train under the lights which will surely benefit us," he added.
The right-handed batsman further acknowledged the fact the team is hurt by the recent Test series against the Kiwis.
"Our team has produced wonderful performances in the last five years. We understand that we have not been at our very best in the last three Tests but I feel the team is determined to bounce back. They are hurt by the recent series defeat in New Zealand. But we can look at it positively, as the side now feels more determined to show that we are one of the better Test sides in the world," he said.
"Everyone is working hard and badly wants to get back to winning ways. There isn't a better place than Australia to start winning," he added.
The Test veteran however backed his batsmen saying each and every one is capable of a strong comeback.
Misbah also said that one thing which his team would be looking to exploit would be the inexperience of the young Australian team.
"Australia is an exciting and challenging team and a very tough team to beat at home so we are expecting an interesting series against them. Although they have some new talented faces in the team, the inexperience is something that we can look to exploit," he said.
"I don't have any doubt in their abilities but their inexperience, especially in the batting department, can be exploited by the opposition as South Africa did in Hobart. But we should also keep in mind that they came back strongly in the last Test in Adelaide and also clean-swept New Zealand in the recent one-day series," he added.
Pakistan have traditionally struggled Down Under, having managed to clinch only four wins from 29 Tests.
The Gabba Test will be followed by games at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (December 26-30) and the Sydney Cricket Ground (January 3-7, 2017). (ANI)