He was history, now it’s a mystery


Pakistan Friday appointed Misbah-ul-Haq as Test captain for upcoming matches against South Africa and retained Shahid Afridi as limited-overs skipper.
Misbah will lead a 16-man Test squad with wicket-keeper batsman Kamran Akmal left out as he recovers from an operation.
Pakistan will play two Twenty20 matches, five one-day internationals and two Tests against South Africa in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. The first T20 will be played on October 26 with the first Test starting on November 12.
Pakistan appointed 36-year-old Misbah as Test captain as Salman Butt was not available while he is provisionally suspended over spot-fixing allegations that surfaced during the team’s recent tour to England.
Also missing from the squad are bowlers Mohammad Aamer and Mohammad Asif, who were suspended over the same scandal.
Misbah will be Pakistan’s sixth Test captain in two years after Shoaib Malik, Younis Khan, Mohammad Yousuf, Shahid Afridi and Salman.
Chief selector Mohsin Khan said the best available players were picked.
“Under the circumstances we have picked the best man to lead and the best 16 players as South Africa are a tough side to play against,” Khan told AFP, stressing the suspended trio will be missed.
An International Cricket Council commission will hear the appeals of the three players in Qatar on October 30 and 31.
Khan hopes recalled paceman Mohammad Sami will step in to fill the gap.
The 35-year-old Akhtar has been named in the limited over squad. Sami was overlooked for the tour of England despite doing well in Australia early this year.
Khan said opener Taufeeq Umer was recalled to solve problems with the opening batting.
“Taufeeq has done well at domestic level so we have picked him for the Tests in the hope that he solves our problems at the top of the order,” said Khan of the opener who played the last of his 25 Tests in 2006.