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Misbah hints retirement after series defeat against Australia

Misbah ul Haq has been one of the most successful Test captain for Pakistan
Misbah ul Haq has been one of the most successful Test captain for Pakistan
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Pakistan Test skipper Misbah-ul-Haq hinted that he is considering retirement from international cricket even before the third and final Test against Australia in Sydney.

The 42-year-old has been struggling for form and in the 10 Tests, he played this year, Misbah has managed just 543 runs at an average of 31 which has dipped to 10 in the last three games.

His scores of 31, 13, 4, 5, 11 and 0 has not helped the team's cause either as Pakistan lost all the three games and eventually succumbed to away series defeats to New Zealand and Australia.

Earlier, the Pakistan Cricket Board had requested Misbah to extend his career until the Australian series to help the team in transformation but his poor run of form might force him to retire during the ongoing series against Steven Smith's men.

"I think I need to think about it," he said, when asked what the immediate future held for him.

"I always believed that if I couldn't contribute to the team then it's no point staying there.

"This is a point where I need to think about that, even before the next game [in Sydney] and after the series.

"Next couple of days I will think about it and decide what to do. There is no point in hanging around and doing nothing. I haven't decided [about Sydney] but let's see."

Misbah said retirement has been on his mind for long time but felt it wasn't right to expose an youngster in difficult conditions in New Zealand and Australia.

"I was thinking about my retirement long ago, even when I was playing against England in Dubai," he said.

"I was thinking then that we had possibly Tests against India, so I would play that and that's it.

"But then we had difficult tours like England, New Zealand and Australia, I thought that is not right time.

"I've been there for last six-seven years, developing this team. I have to face these difficult series.

"That is why I hung around. Even at that stage my plan was not to play for another two-three years. I have to think about that, haven't finalised it."

The third and final Test between Australia and Pakistan will kick-off at Sydney Cricket Ground on 3rd January and if Misbah calls it a day prior to that then Azhar Ali is expected to take over the reins of the team.

© Cricket World 2016