Year 2010 was one of the most eventful year for Pakistan cricket. International cricket remained out of Pakistan for whole year as a result Pakistan played his home series against South Africa, England and Australia in away countries. The lack of cricket at home is painful not only for the cricket spectators but also for the local players but more painful was the outcome of away tours of Pakistani cricket team in 2010. Below are some of the highest and lowest points of Pakistani cricket.
Leeds Win: 2nd Test: Australia v Pakistan at Leeds- Jul 21-24, 2010
Pakistan won Leeds test to register first test against Australia after 15 years to level the test series. Mohammad Aamir was the hero of Pakistani win who reduced Australia to 88 in first innings.
Pakistan was under immense pressure after spot fixing controversy and defeat in first two ODI's. England was 201-5 with Morgan at the crease, Gul took career best 6-42 to fold English innings on 218 handing Pakistan a moral boasting victory after the Lords debacle. It was one of the best swing bowling display under pressure in the recent history of Pakistan cricket.
Razzaq's Blitz: 2nd ODI: Pakistan v South Africa at Abu Dhabi- Oct 31, 2010
Pakistan was tottering at 136-5 in 29 overs when he entered the ground. He kept calm throughout his stay leaving balls outside off stamps while the req run rate went up and up. But he did not get panic, needing 53 from last Four overs with a tail ender at the other end. He launched a full scale attack on the inept bowling of South Africa and stole an incredible win for Pakistan. His innings of 109 off 72 balls will be remembers for years for his breathtaking stroke play.
Disastrous Tour of Australia Jan-Feb 2010
Pakistan lost Sydney test by a narrow margin of 36 runs, although they have bowled out Australia on 127 in first innings before piling up 333 in first inning and have Australia reeling on 257-8 in second innings at one stage. It was the turning point of the worst ever tour of Pakistan, who were humiliated by 3-0 in tests and 5-0 In ODI's loosing the only T-twenty. PCB arranged an inquiry and afterwards handed strict punishment to players. Mohammad Yousuf and Younus Khan were banned for life from all types of cricket while Shoaib Malik, Rana Naved,Shahid, Afridi, Kamran Akmal and Umar Akmal had been banned and fined for different reasons.
Again Australia: 2nd Semi-Final: Australia v Pakistan at Gros Islet - May 14, 2010
Pakistan reached the semi-final of world twenty-20 played in West Indies but lost to Australia in a controversial manner. Australia required 87 from 7.3 overs when M Hussey arrived at crease with half of Australian team gone back to pavilion. Australia made 48 runs required from three overs to reach final. Saeed Ajmal conceded 23 runs of last over, while Hussey single handedly snatched the game from Pakistan.
Lords Fiasco and Spot Fixing Controversy
Pakistan had England at its toes in Lords test as they were reduced to 102-7 in their first innings when Stuart Broad and IJL Trott produced 332 runs partnership for 8th wicket to defeat Pakistan. Later it was disclosed by The News of The World that Pakistani cricketers were involved in spot fixing during Lords test. ICC took immediate notice of the reports and suspended Seven Pakistani cricketers from cricket, four of them were released to play cricket but Mohammad Aamir, Mohammad Asif and Salman Butt are still facing bans. The debacle added to the dark clouds hovering over Pakistani cricket after attack on Sri Lankan team in Lahore.