Misbah-ul-Haq doesn't get as much credit as he deserves.
It was clear immediately that responsibility suited Misbah's game. Starting in his first match in charge, he went on a streak of seven consecutive half-centuries from number five (although there was a failure at number four between the last two). He continued to be just as consistent, and in a period stretching across his first fifteen months in charge, his batting stats were extraordinary. In those 14 Tests, he posted over 1100 runs, at an average of over 70. Of 23 innings, thirteen were over 50, including a century. Only five times did bowlers dismiss him for under 40. Inevitably, his form has plateaued, but he is still the rock of many innings.
It is an oft-levelled criticism that Misbah's batting is too dour for the modern game. While he does sometimes retreat into his shell, his slower scoring sits amongst a team full of stroke-makers. In the one-day game, he lifts his tempo to a very passable five runs per over amongst a middle order with talents like Shahid Afridi. He is, once again, hugely dependable in the one-day format, and scores a lot of runs in matches that Pakistan win: he averages almost 57 with eighteen fifties in wins, but just 26 with four fifties in losses.
As well as the stats, there is also the fact that he is unflappable under pressure. Only this week, Misbah mounted a spectacular rescue of Pakistan's crumbling batting. From 144 for six, and only the tail to bat with, the skipper milked the Scottish bowlers, and by running hard brought up his half-century in just 64 balls, despite only having hit two boundaries at that stage. He then cut loose, hitting three sixes to help the tourists to finish out of reach. His personal contribution was an unbeaten 83 from 80 balls.
Misbah-ul-Haq is a calm and consistent batsman who is as good as anyone in the world for a batting crisis, and who led his nation out of the biggest crisis of all. That is why he is my Player of the Week.