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Misbah-ul-Haq to Retire After West Indies Test

by AFP

Marwan Naamani—AFP

Test captain says current series will be his last.

Pakistan’s illustrious Test captain Misbah-ul-Haq will retire after the upcoming Test series against the West Indies, he announced on Thursday, after months of speculation over his future.

“The series against the West Indies is my last series,” the 42-year-old told reporters at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore, adding he was under no pressure to retire. “I am satisfied,” he said.

Since taking over the captaincy in the wake of an international spot-fixing scandal in 2010, Haq has led Pakistan in 53 Tests, winning 24 losing 18 and drawing 11. He also briefly led his team to world number one Test rankings last year, despite playing no matches at home due to the prevailing insecurity. The feat earned him widespread acclaim throughout the cricketing world.

But rumors have long swirled over when the veteran would call time on his long career, with former Pakistan cricket heavyweights demanding he step down in January, blaming his poor batting and uninspired captaincy for a 3-0 whitewash in Australia.

Haq responded to the criticism by saying he would take his time to decide on his future, reversing an earlier announcement that he would quit. “My cricket journey was very good… There were many hardships in my career but for now I am focusing on the present situation,” he said on Thursday. “The series against West Indies is a good opportunity to bring the team back on the winning track.”

Haq will lead Pakistan in the Tests, the first of which starts in Jamaica on April 21, the second in Barbados on April 30 and the third in Dominica on May 10.

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