Poor fitness led to ODI, Test defeat: Malik

Updated: 14 December 2007 14:02 IST

Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik wants his team to improve fitness levels in order to do better on the cricket field.

Poor fitness led to ODI, Test defeat: Malik

Karachi:

Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik wants his team to improve fitness levels in order to do better on the cricket field. Malik blamed his players' lack of fitness for the team's 0-1 defeat in the Test series against India.

Malik himself sat out of the last two Tests of the three-Test series. He missed playing in Kolkata and Bangalore due to an ankle injury.

He added that some of the team's key players suffered from injuries, which affected Pakistan's campaign in the series. Earlier, Malik's team also lost the five-match One-day International series 2-3.

"We were dogged by fitness problems during the best part of this tour which was one of the factors why we lost the series," he said.

Pakistan lost medium pacer Mohammad Asif - one of their key strike bowlers - because of an elbow injury before the start of the Indian tour and later another pacer, Umar Gul, was forced to miss the Test series because of a back problem.

Malik injured his ankle after the opening Test in Delhi while Shoaib Akhtar, Pakistan's main bowler who had the full responsibility in the absence of Asif and Gul, was also ill and had fever.

Malik said: "We will have to really work hard on our fitness in the coming weeks."

But he expressed confidence that his players would be a lot fitter when Pakistan take on Zimbabwe at home in a one-day series against next month.

Malik said that losing both the one-day and Test series was a major disappointment but was quick to point out that Pakistan had their moments on the tour.

"We tried to give them (India) a fight but lost in both one-dayers and Tests. But as a skipper, I would also like to remember some positives like the performances Misbah-ul-Haq, who was great throughout the tour," he said.

Topics : Cricket Shoaib Malik
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