Pakistan Test captain Misbah-ul-Haq has announced he will retire from international cricket after the three-Test series against West Indies
The 42-year-old batsman, who was named one of Wisden’s five Cricketers of the Year on Wednesday has announced the much speculated retirement decision at a press conference in Lahore on Thursday.
He is a middle-order batsman best known for his composure with the bat whilst also having the ability to be an aggressive big shot player when required. He has the world record of scoring most runs without century in ODI career and has led his side in 53 Tests since taking over in 2010.
Misbah holds the record of the fastest test half century and shared the record for fastest test century with Sir Vivian Richards, which was later broken by Brendon McCullum.
Misbah has been under scrutiny and the speculation of his retirement was in the air after a string of recent Pakistan Test losses, which came shortly after they had achieved the No. 1 ranking in Tests. Pakistan suffered six consecutive Test defeats, and lost away series in New Zealand and Australia by margins of 2-0 and 3-0 respectively.
Pakistan will take on West Indies in a three-match series, with the first Test in Kingston starting on 21 April.
“It will be my last series and I had conveyed this to the chairman (Pakistan Cricket Board) quite some time ago,” Misbah told reporters at the Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore. “I will try to finish it on a high note.
“There was no pressure on me. I was planning to quit after the England series in the UAE [in October 2015] but there were some things and I had to carry on playing. But overall it’s fine and not like I am under any pressure or somebody has dictated this to me. I have myself understood that this is it and it’s purely my own decision. It’s a wrong impression that the board has enforced this as my last series or there’s a patch-up between me and the cricket board. I thought to play against West Indies because it was important for us as we haven’t won against them in their own backyard.”
Misbah is Pakistan’s most successful Test captain, with 24 wins from his 53 matches in charges, having also briefly led his side to the number one Test ranking last year.
Congratulations on great career @captainmisbahpk a pleasure to play with u,will always rem our great wins&performances together.
— Shahid Afridi (@SAfridiOfficial) April 6, 2017
— Lord’s Ground (@HomeOfCricket) April 6, 2017