I couldn't have asked for more, says Misbah

 15 May 2017 - 12:08

I couldn't have asked for more, says Misbah
Retiring Pakistan cricket team captain Misbah-ul-Haq kisses the series trophy after winning the final test match and the series 2-1 against the West Indies at the Windsor Park Stadium in Roseau, Dominica on May 14, 2017. (AFP / MARK RALSTON)

By Rizwan Rehmat / The Peninsula

DOHA: Pakistan's greatest Test captain Misbah Ul Haq on Sunday evening walked into the sunset of his roller-coaster career, saying he 'couldn't have asked for more.'

In a dramatic finish, Pakistan beat the West Indies by 101 runs with just one over to go in the third and final Test match at Dominica.

Leg-spinner Yasir Shah dismissed West Indies tail-ender Shanon Gabriel off the last ball of the penultimate over of the match as Pakistan celebrated their first ever Test series win in the Caribbean. The visitors clinched the three-match series 2-1.

It was a fitting end to Misbah's 75-Test career along with Younis Khan who also bid farewell to Test cricket with 118 international caps.

"What a finish, I couldn't have asked more than that," Misbah, 43, said after the game.

"It was the first ever (series) win for a Pakistan team in the West Indies so everybody was so motivated and they were working hard for me and Younis," Misbah, who now sports a long beard unlike his clean-shaven look until last year, added.

"I'm happy with what I've had in this career," Misbah said. "A lot of frustrations, no-ball wickets, a couple of chances here and there, but I think you enjoy wins like that much more than straightforward wins.

"I would like to thank Almightly Allah, whatever I had, whatever success I got throughout my career, to end like that, I couldn't ask for anything better.

"I would like to thank my family: my mother, my sisters, and especially to my wife Uzma who supported me and was always there," Misbah said.

The out-going Pakistan skipper said he would have retired earlier in the year but for his wife's insistence on playing on another series and going out on winning note.

"This series was only for her because I could have finished in Australia (in December-Jan). She just convinced me and the fans that I have to come," Misbah said.

"And this team, too, most of these players (said), 'You don't have to end like that. You have to go winning and performing well.'"

Misbah had a word for his son, who is away in Pakistan.

"My son is not here. He's watching on TV, so I'm missing him. But obviously he has his exams and could not travel with us," the Pakistan skipper said with a smile.

"A lot of others, too. Throughout my career, all the coaching staff, managers, trainers, doctors, and especially the colleagues, teammates, class fellows, teachers, who really supported me throughout my career, throughout my life and would be praying for me. Thanks a lot.

"And fans all throughout the world. Not just Pakistan. Even in West Indies, all the guys they've been coming to me, wishing me all the best for the rest of life. But it's life, everything except the Almighty Allah, has to end, whether it's bad or good," Misbah said.

"I am really happy for this team, all the guys here, the way they gave me and Younis send-offs," he added.

Misbah applauded Younis Khan on his brilliant career.

"... and a special thanks to Younis. I wish him the very best of luck in his future life. It was a very fine journey with him in the middle, sharing a lot of partnerships, and I loved every moment of that.

"In the history books, my name will come with him and he's a legend. He's a top performer for Pakistan: 34 centuries, 10,000 runs, broke a lot of records. I had 15 hundred-partnerships with him and that's something special to me that my name will come next to a legend and be remembered in history," Misbah pointed out.

"I might have just forgotten names but whoever worked with me, whoever played with me, I enjoyed that and I think they have made a contribution in my life and career. Thank you all, thank you very much," he added.