Politics and Sports are two different things,say Misbah

KARACHI: Misbah-ul-Haq has never hidden his desire of playing and beating in a full Test series before hanging up his cricket shoes.But Pakistan’s Test captain, who was recently in the limelight when he received the ICC Test mace for his team’s number one ranking, made it clear that there is no use in running after the Indians if they are not willing to play against Pakistan.

Misbah stressed that all cricket fans want the resumption of bilateral cricketing relations between India and Pakistan but such a development will only be possible if politics are kept out of sports.“As a player I would like to play against India. I would want to captain our side against them. But unless politics is kept away from cricket than there can’t be a resumption of bilateral ties,” Misbah said.

“But if the Indians don’t want to play then you can’t do anything about it,” he added.

Misbah, who took over as Pakistan’s captain in 2007, is yet to play in a Test against India although he has captained the side against the arch-rivals in limited over matches but at neutral venues.

India have not played a proper bilateral Test series against Pakistan since 2007 when Misbah toured India with the national side.Misbah said that Pakistan had always pushed for resumption of bilateral ties but unfortunately the response from India had not been the same.

BCCI chief Anurag Thakur’s recently said there was no question of playing against Pakistan in the current scenario and that has not gone down well with the Pakistani cricket fans and former players.

Former players have ridiculed the statement by Thakur pointing out that as it is India who had avoided playing against Pakistan in a bilateral series since last nine years.

Speaking on a different issue, Misbah said that senior players, when they retire, should do so without involving themselves in any kind of controversy.

“Senior players saying goodbye to cricket in a good manner sends a good message,” said Misbah indirectly referring to the case of former captain Shahid Afridi, who is not quitting despite being snubbed by national selectors.

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