Johannesburg: Pakistan are losing ground on Test rivals because they cannot host international teams owing to security concerns and accordingly play fewer Test matches, captain Misbah-ul-Haq Misbah-ul-Haq said yesterday. As his team prepared to take on the world's top-ranked Test team South Africa in the three-Test series starting in Johannesburg on February 1, Misbah said Pakistan were at a disadvantage because of the "limitations".
"As a team it is very difficult when you not playing a format on a regular basis. You really have to work hard. But we have to adjust, you could say it is a limitation for us but we are professionals, we have to do well," he told a news conference. "We don't have home series and when you aren't playing at home then you miss a lot of cricket and you play only about five or six tests a year when other teams are playing 15 or 16 Tests a year."
Pakistan have not hosted a test-playing team since armed militants attacked the Sri Lanka team bus in Lahore in 2009, killing eight Pakistanis and wounding six Sri Lankan players. Their 'home' matches since then have been held at neutral venues, mostly in Dubai or Abu Dhabi, while Pakistan have not played a Test series anywhere since July last year.