Captaincy affecting Younis’ captaincy

April 29th, 2009 - 6:53 pm ICT by IANS  

By Omar Khalid
Karachi, April 29 (IANS) Pakistan captain Younis Khan feels the added burden of captaincy may have affected his batting but has promised a return to form in the remaining two matches of the one-day series against Australia in UAE.

Younis, who celebrated his ascent to captaincy in February by scoring a match-saving 313 against Sri Lanka in the first Test in Karachi, has completely flopped in the first three ODIs against Australia in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

He has just scored 27 runs in the three games and Pakistan is trailing the series 1-2 against the Australians.

“May be it’s the captaincy that’s affecting my performance,” he said on Wednesday. “It could have affected my concentration but I’m sure the runs will come soon,” he added.

Younis, 31, is the backbone of the Pakistani batting line in the absence of Mohammad Yousuf, who was blacklisted by Pakistan after he switched to the rebel Indian Cricket League last year.

The skipper is not the only senior batsman in the Pakistan team to have struggled against the Australians in the series. Former captain Shoaib Malik and the current vice-captain Misbah-ul-Haq are also going through a bad patch.

When asked why he is against the idea of dropping either Misbah or Malik, Younis made it clear that he is not in favour of any such move.

“I haven’t accepted captaincy to drop players like Misbah and Malik,” he said. “If I do that the entire Pakistan will start complaining. If I drop Misbah, they will say I have gotten rid of the vice-captain and if I drop Malik they will stay that first he took away the captaincy from him and now a place in the team.”

Younis said that he is confident that Malik and Misbah will soon playing the big knocks that Pakistan is urgently seeking from its seniors pros.

“I scored a couple of ducks in Bangladesh last year and then scored a century. I’m sure that similarly, Malik and Misbah will also regain their form.”

Younis stressed that his batsmen will have to learn to play well under pressure. “We lost the last match (against) Australia because our batsmen were unable to bat under pressure,” he said.

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