Former Australia captain Ian Chappell has come hard at criticizing the inadequacy of Pakistan’s captaincy strategy in the recently concluded series down under. The hosts steamrolled over a clueless Pakistan, handing them an innings defeat across both games of the two-match Test series.
Azhar Ali’s visiting side stepped into the familiar territory with a forgettable track record of 12 successive defeats down under for Pakistan. And now two more losses has been added to the losing streak. According to Ian Chappell, it was Pakistan’s failed captaincy that led to this abysmal run. Despite all the preparation on the bouncy pitches ahead of the Test series, Pakistan forgot to focus on what is required most in the challenging Australian conditions- captaincy.
“While Pakistan's preparation on the recent tour seemed adequate - they had practice matches on bouncy wickets in Perth and the batsmen trained to cope with short-pitched bowling - they forgot one important ingredient, captaincy,” Ian Chappell wrote in his column for ESPNCricinfo.
“Captaincy in Australia is unlike in other countries. The pitches certainly have extra bounce, but if good batsmen are set they can be hard to remove and it requires a dose of positive imagination to bring about their downfall. Captaincy should be one of the prime topics of discussion before a team tours Australia,” he advised.
The Aussie veteran has pointed out why exactly Azhar Ali’s captaincy failed down under. And it’s not about the availability of good player. Pakistan are well equipped with that but what seemed typical was the captaincy, including the field placements, being exactly like when Misbah-ul-Haq was captain. Sure Misbah is the biggest deal in the PCB right now but what Chappell points out is the repeat of failure. Emulating something that’s already been a failure.
“Pakistan's captaincy on the last three tours of Australia has been abysmal. To exacerbate the problem, Misbah-ul-Haq, who presided over an Australian run feast on the 2016-17 tour, was appointed coach on the recent tour. Judging by the field placements set by Azhar Ali, the 2019-20 captain, he had read thoroughly, from cover to cover, Misbah's Australian tour playbook,” he criticized.