Life would have been a lot easier and predictable if you could simply get whatever you wanted, whenever you wanted. But that's the thing about life, it does not always give you what you want. Life throws at you times that seem difficult, obstacles that seem impossible and failure that seems inevitable. Even the toughest of figures can be brought down through constant criticism and leg-pulling. You don't always get what you bargain for and despite all the struggles you end up achieving little in life. They try yet they don't succeed. They do their best yet they can't make people happy. They execute yet they face criticism. Such people are strugglers: they have hard work etched in their palm lines.

Pakistan is a place where such people exist in large numbers, but they never seem to reach the skies that they were born to conquer. We have one such tragedy in our cricketing world as well that has single-handedly lifted our entire national team to glorious times, but has remained under scrutiny for too long. The backbone of Pakistan cricket, the unsung hero - Misbahul Haq.

We have seen professionals reach astounding heights after a stroke of luck, but Misbah has carved a name for himself by climbing past a mountain of corrupted media, incapable management and, most unfortunately, a nation that refused to accept him. He has, without a doubt, executed the most thankless job and blasted his critics – not through his words, but through the blade of his bat, for his actions did speak louder than a thousand words could.

Pakistan cricket arguably has has more cricketing heroes and superstars than any other cricketing nation. After all, we do play the game with everything that lives within our heart. Among a long list of national heroes like Imran Khan, Wasim Akram and Javed Miandad, Misbah has created a name for himself by giving everything to Pakistan cricket. He came into limelight after the infamous loss to India in the final of the inaugural T20 World Cup. The loss would have been a bitter pill to swallow, if we had not found Misbah - the scapegoat. Ever since, the cricket board and media have made full use of it and although he might not be fully acknowledged as the captain of the team, but the burden of every mistake has always fallen on the shoulders of Misbah.

Misbah silenced his critics by whitewashing the Englishmen and giving the South Africans a run for their money in UAE – our ‘home’. Misbah has proved himself to be a solid middle-order batsman and truly someone that the entire team can rely on. Misbah is, by nature, conservative in his approach and cool as a cucumber both on and off the field. He is one of the very few professionals who can mould their game according to what the situation demands from them. Though he often receives strong criticism for being too defensive and too slow for the game, he recently scored the fastest fifty in Test matches (21 balls) and in the very same match, against Australia, equalled Sir. Vivian Richards' record for the fastest century as well (56 balls), hence, showing that he is also capable of playing aggressive shots when the team requires him to score at a fast pace.

Misbahul Haq has always allowed his bat to do the talking. Although, some might argue that records and statistics only show half the picture, I'm afraid they are indeed right. What statistics do not show is the number of times Misbah has saved, not only the cricket team, but the entire nation from embarrassment after the team's trademark top-order collapses. What statistics do not show is the effort that he puts in on the field by diving around and taking a shy at the stumps. What statistics do not show is the number of times that he has proved the entire media, management and nation wrong by pushing the side to victories that seemed unimaginable. Statistics do not show the complete picture and records do lie because he might be 40 years old, but he has the heart of a youngster who takes pride in representing his nation on the grandest of stages and wants them to win every single time. In your eyes, he might not have earned the title of best captain or best batsman, but has earned a standing ovation and a round of applause from the entire nation for all his efforts.

Thank you, Misbah.