England Test captain Alastair Cook believes that his team had the chance to win the 2012 series against Pakistan in the UAE but the hosts won the critical moments well to whitewash them.
“Going on that last tour we probably should have won that series,” said Cook, as quoted by England Cricket’s official website.
“We had opportunities to win that series – we had to chase about 140 twice on good wickets and we should have done them.
“Credit to Pakistan, they hung in there in that series and then really won the critical moments well.
“That can be the way in sub-continent conditions or UAE conditions, the games can turn very quickly so you have to make sure you’re grabbing that opportunity.”
The opening batsman who is finding a reasonable partner in either Alex Hales or Moeen Ali to accompany him in the series against Pakistan believes it will not be easy to down the hosts in their out-of-home hunting ground.
Pakistan are still unbeaten since 2011 in seven Test series but Cook believes he can catch the Misbahul Haq-led men off guard.
“We’ve got a young side, we’ve got an exciting side,” he added.
“We’re absolutely very clear in our minds how hard it is going to be but what a challenge it is for us.
“It is pretty similar to the sub-continent; the only thing going back to that series was the number of lbws there were – it was the highest it’s ever been in any series I think, with that back-of-a-length skiddy ball that the spinners are bowling.
“Quick spin, back of a length and really skidding on – there wasn’t really much turn but that was a big difference for me.
“The pitches didn’t quite deteriorate like some sub-continent pitches do – they turned a little bit more without really turning like they do in Mumbai.”