The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Pak Media slams ‘historic defeat’
- PCB shouldn’t do anything emotionally: Intikhab

Islamabad, April 17: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman, Shaharyar Khan, may have tried to quieten the expected uproar by promising to “effect changes” both within the team management and the body itself, but the print Media has been scathing in its criticism of the home team’s performance in the Revival Series.

Pakistan lost the ODIs 2-3 and got whipped 1-2 in the Tests — both defeats, incidentally, by an innings.

While the premier English daily, Dawn, didn’t think it worthwhile having even a few lines on the unprecedented Indian win on page 1 (the Multan victory was similarly ignored), The Nation gave considerable space. As for The News, around a hundred words made the main page.

In fact, The Nation’s strap — ‘Historic Defeat’ — really rubbed it in for Inzamam-ul Haq and the rest. Worse, in the sports section, one of the articles was headlined ‘Revisiting Kargil in Cricket’.

We needn’t elaborate. Nor do we need to comment on The News’ page 1 cartoon which showed a chastened Inzamam holding an awful report card — ‘Batting-C, Bowling-D, Fielding-E... Need hard work etc., etc., etc.’

The other headlines, across the English dailies, aren’t going to comfort Inzamam (or coach Javed Miandad) either: ‘Spineless batsmen give India historic victory,’ ‘Pakistani cricketers earn total humiliation’ and ‘Pakistan cricket’s blackest day’.

Clearly, despite everything that was said on the eve of this most-hyped tour, a loss to India remains a catastrophe.

However, while accepting that changes in the team management “were necessary,” former captain and coach Intikhab Alam felt the PCB “shouldn’t do anything emotionally.” Speaking to The Telegraph from his Lahore residence, on Saturday, he added: “The wrongs must be addressed in a calm manner... That’s the way forward.”

Intikhab, of course, complimented Team India: “Your side came with a purpose and achieved it in style... I liked the team’s discipline, both in bowling and batting, plus the side always gave the impression of being cohesive. India deserved to win.”

That, in effect, is the bottomline.

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