HPV vaccine for boys – right thing to do, even if it is 3…

first_imgDear Editor,In 2010, as Health Minister, I announced the HPV vaccine initiative. In 2011, we launched the HPV vaccine initiative for girls – nine to 11 years old. The initiative’s implementation was launched with a simple ceremony at the Grove, East Bank Demerara Health Centre.I spoke at the launching. Among the persons present was the Regional Health Officer, who at the time was Dr Karen Cummings, now the Minister within the Public Health Ministry. Amusingly, this HPV initiative has been launched, at least, three more times since May 2015. This week, Public Health Minister Volda Lawrence announced that the HPV vaccine initiative will be extended to boys. This is a necessary move and I commend the Public Health Ministry. In commending them, I urge that this announcement is not merely more talk, since the roll out of the initiative to include boys is now, at least, three years late.At the time, the People’s Progressive Party Government invested in the HPV vaccine initiative because global research had shown HPV was, and is, a common virus that infects both men and women. Studies show that HPV is so common that eight out of 10 people will get an HPV infection at some point in their lifetime. HPV infections can cause cervical cancers in women; cancers of the back of the throat, known as oropharyngeal cancer; cancer in the anus, in both women and men; and of the penis. Cancers of the back of the throat have now surpassed cervical cancer as the most common type of cancer caused by HPV. Unlike cervical cancer in women, there are no recommended screening tests for the other types of cancers that HPV causes, so they may not be found until they cause health problems. The HPV vaccine initiative, therefore, was more than an initiative to stop cervical cancer. While best known as a critical strategy in the fight against cervical cancer, HPV vaccines are now seen as a potent tool in the fight against several cancers. This is why, we must spare no effort to ensure universal access to HPV vaccines for our children and other vulnerable groups.The Public Health Minister’s announcement that the HPV vaccine programme will be extended to boys is correcting a grave mis-step since this progressive move is already more than three years late from the timeline established in 2010, when I was Health Minister. At the time, we promised HPV vaccine would become part of the immunisation programme by 2011, starting with vaccination of girls age nine to 11 years. Parents of girls 12 to 15 years old were encouraged to bring in their daughters for vaccination also. At the time, we established 2015 as the start date for extending HPV vaccination to boys between nine and 11 years old. The announcement by the Minister that the programme will now include boys is a case of “better late than never”.When we outlined the details for the roll out of the HPV vaccination initiative at the initiative’s launching at the Grove Health Centre, beginning with girls nine to 11 years old in 2011, and including the vaccination of boys by 2015, we also announced by 2020, we would begin providing HPV vaccines for women 20 to 40 years old who did not have the HPV vaccines, which would be the vast majority of Guyanese women of that age group. Interestingly, the US started the adult women HPV vaccine programme in 2018. When we launched the HPV vaccine initiative in 2011 with its rollout details, the initiative was one of the most ambitious HPV initiatives in the world.Vaccinating boys with the HPV vaccine is a critical step forward and even though Guyana missed the original timeline of 2015, Guyana still is in the forefront of developing countries when it comes to HPV vaccines. This was an important strategic move by the Health Ministry in its fight against cervical cancer, but since then, it is a critical initiative in the overall anti-cancer fight. Once we have universal access to HPV vaccines in Guyana, we have a good chance of reducing the incidence of cervical cancer by greater than 70 per cent by 2030 and also to have a prevention success in the fight against other cancers. It is therefore encouraging that Guyana is implementing the programme, as originally envisaged, even if it is disappointing that the timelines have shifted. I encourage the Public Health Ministry to hasten forward with the timelines.In making the announcement, the Minister did not update the citizens of our country with the status of HPV vaccination for girls nine to 11 years old. If the programme has been effective, the vast majority of girls between 11 and 18 years old at this time should be HPV immunised. The Public Health Ministry needs to update the country on the HPV-status of girls between the age of 11 and 18 at this time. Does the Ministry have any data? We need to know. Guyana cannot simply be launching the programme every year without updating citizens about progress made in immunising our children, both boys and girls, with the HPV vaccine. It is like spinning our wheels, and not going anywhere.Sincerely,Dr Leslie Ramsammylast_img read more

March 27th Community Events Photos

first_imgThe North Peace Cultural Centre’s parking lot overflows with vehicles as families come to watch The Doodlebops: Together Forever Tour.                                                               Picture: Amber Davy After couple days of snowfall, Fort St. John finally gets a chance to enjoy some sunshine and warm weather.                                                                                                    Picture: Amber Davy- Advertisement –   With the warming weather and high wind, Fort St. John’s streets are becoming wet, slushy and a little bit slippery.                                                                                                         Picture: Amber Davylast_img read more

Ancelotti and Ronaldo set for Old Trafford, Everton to land Arsenal ace? Paper review

first_imgHere’s the top transfer-related stories in Monday’s newspapers…Manchester United are considering sacking manager Louis van Gaal and bringing in Carlo Ancelotti. And Ancelotti’s arrival at United could result in a sensational return to Old Trafford for Cristiano Ronaldo. (Daily Star)Napoli are ready to swoop for Manchester United defender Guillermo Varela in the January transfer window. (Metro)Liverpool target Stefan Kiessling has strongly hinted that he will leave Bayer Leverkusen in the January transfer window. (Metro)Pep Guardiola faces family turmoil as they want to stay in Munich. And the news could wreck Manchester City’s plans to capture the Bayern boss next summer. Manchester United, despite insisting they will stick with under-fire Louis van Gaal, would also be interested if it all goes wrong for the Dutchman. But with Paris Saint– Germain also in the frame, Guardiola may now decide to stay in Germany. (The Sun)Everton want Arsenal star Calum Chambers as a long-term replacement for John Stones. The England defender, 20, is considering his future at the Emirates after a lack of first-team football since moving from Southampton in July 2014. (The Sun)Alan Pardew is set to join the race for Juventus striker Simone Zaza. The 24-year-old will be allowed to leave on loan and is also wanted by Watford and Norwich. But the Crystal Palace boss is ready to step in and sign the Italy striker until the end of the season. (The Sun)West Ham have put Argentina midfielder Federico Mancuello on their transfer wishlist. The Independiente star, 26, will be allowed to leave for £2.5million despite breaking into the national team and playing alongside Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero. (The Sun)Remi Garde is eyeing a shock move for Julien Faubert to help save Aston Villa’s season. The ex-France and West Ham winger, 32, is a free agent and on Garde’s radar as the Villa boss looks to bolster his squad. (The Sun)Jaap Stam wants to return to English football – as manager of Fulham. Ex-Manchester United defender Stam is believed to have told Cottagers chiefs he is open to holding talks over the vacant post. The Dutchman, 43, is currently coach of Ajax’s reserves but hopes to make the step up into a hot-seat. (Daily Mirror)last_img read more

50 Christmas trees to spruce up Raphoe Cathedral

first_imgThe historic cathedral of St Eunan’s in Raphoe will be transformed next week when it is decorated with around 50 Christmas trees for the church’s first-ever Christmas tree festival.The ‘Festival of Christmas Trees’ will open on Friday 6th of December and continue until Sunday 8th of December. A Community Carol Service will be held at 8pm on the Friday to launch the festival formally.The Dean of Raphoe, Very Rev’d Arthur Barrett, has extended an open invitation to the public to include a visit to the festival as part of their Christmas preparations. He said “Our ‘Festival of Christmas Trees’ will be a memorable experience for our parishioners,” Dean Barrett said, “and will offer a remarkable spectacle for the whole community as people prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus.”Such festivals are common in other Church of Ireland parishes but this will be the first time in its 800-year history that a Christmas tree festival will have been held in the Cathedral Church of St Eunan in Raphoe.Dean Barrett has acknowledged the efforts of his parish team and the help of the wider community in making the event possible.“I am very grateful to the many individuals, groups, businesses and organisations who have ‘invested’ in our celebration by providing Christmas trees. Our festival is going to feature around 50 trees – of various shapes and sizes – all of which will attest to the ingenuity and creativity of their creators. “If you’ve never been to a Christmas Tree Festival before, why not give ours a try? They provide a truly wonderful spectacle and offer a welcome respite from the hassle and pressure that are for many people nowadays an unavoidable feature of the festive season.”Dean Barret also invited people to ‘kick-start’ their holiday season by attending the Community Carol Service in Raphoe Cathedral at 8pm on Friday 6th December. “The Service will be a joyful way of celebrating the beginning of our ‘Festival of Christmas Trees’ and a great opportunity for people to come together in fellowship with their neighbours. Whatever their denomination, whether they’re people of faith or not, our doors are open and people will be welcome to join us at our Carol Service.”St Eunan’s Cathedral in Raphoe will be open for the ‘Festival of Christmas Trees’ from 12 noon to 7pm on Friday 6th December; 10am to 7pm on Saturday 7th December; and 2pm to 7pm on Sunday 8th December. All proceeds will go to the parish’s ‘Cathedral Restoration Project 2020’.50 Christmas trees to spruce up Raphoe Cathedral was last modified: November 29th, 2019 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:cathedralChristmas TreesRaphoelast_img read more

Earth Day 2014 and Climate Change

first_imgUnderstanding the IPCCThe IPCC and its periodic reports can be pretty confusing, especially for acronym-challenged individuals like me, so let me provide a bit of background. The IPCC was established by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and another UN organization, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), in 1988 to better understand climate change, what its impacts might be, and what to do about it.The Panel released its first Assessment Report two years later, in 1990. Like the subsequent Assessment Reports, this was really three reports from three different Working Groups. Here’s how these Working Groups are described on the IPCC website:Working Group I assesses the physical scientific aspects of the climate system and climate change.Working Group II assesses the vulnerability of socio-economic and natural systems to climate change, negative and positive consequences of climate change, and options for adapting to it. This group focuses both on sectors (water resources; ecosystems; food & forests; coastal systems; industry; human health) and regions (Africa; Asia; Australia; New Zealand; Europe; Latin America; North America; Polar Regions; Small Islands).Working Group III assesses options for mitigating climate change through limiting or preventing greenhouse gas emissions and enhancing activities that remove them from the atmosphere. With Earth Day having been this week, I’ve been musing about the state of our environment and where we’re heading.Forty-four years after the first Earth Day in 1970 (when I was a teenager and the Earth Day Coordinator in my junior high school in Pennsylvania), a lot has been accomplished. Our skies are generally cleaner (in the U.S. at least). We’re no longer dumping raw sewage into our rivers, and fish have returned to many of our most polluted bodies of water — including Ohio’s infamous Cuyahoga River, which caught fire several times in the 1960s. The most toxic pesticides, such as DDT, have been banned in the U.S. and bird species like the bald eagle and peregrine falcon have rebounded from the brink of extinction in the lower 48 states.But all is not well. The looming crisis of climate change is ever more obvious today — even as climate science deniers and the well-paid politicians they invest in create an impression in the media that there remains significant debate about global warming. Climate change threatens the environmental gains we’ve realized since the 1970s with far greater environmental catastrophe over the coming decades and centuries. The IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) has recently released its three-part Fifth Assessment Report — the most definitive to date in describing what we can expect and what we are already experiencing with climate change. RELATED ARTICLES Half of All Americans Worry About Climate ChangeGood News Bad News With Climate ChangeSeeking Common Ground on Climate Change PolicyScience, Climate Change, and Policy The Science of Global Warming Is Older Than Quantum MechanicsAvoiding the Global Warming Impact of InsulationInsulation to Keep Us Warm — Not Warm the Planet New Blowing Agent Addresses Climate Impact of Foam InsulationThe Connection Between Obesity and Climate ChangeWood Buildings Make a Happy Planet An expanding series of IPCC reportsSince the first Assessment Report in 1990, Supplemental Reports were published in 1992 by Working Groups I and II. The Second Assessment Report was published in 1995; the third in 2001; the fourth in 2007; and the Fifth Assessment Report was released in three phases starting last September.With this Fifth Assessment Report, the sub-reports were released as follows:The Working Group I Report, “Climate Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis” (1,535 pages!), was released in September 2013 in Stockholm;The Working Group II Report, “Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability,” was released in March 2014 in Yokohama, Japan; andThe Working Group III Report, “Climate Change 2014: Mitigation of Climate Change,” was released in April 2014 in Berlin.A Synthesis Report of the Fifth Assessment Report will be published later this year.In addition to these main reports, IPCC has published nine special reports over the years, including Carbon Dioxide Capture and Storage (2005), Renewable Energy Sources and Climate Change Mitigation (2011), and Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (2012). All of the IPCC reports can be found here.center_img IPCC reports as a basis for policyThe ongoing IPCC reports have provided the foundation for important policies at an international level.Starting in 1990, when the first IPCC Assessment Report was published, the U.N. General Assembly decided to initiate negotiations on how to regulate greenhouse gas emissions, and in 1992 the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) was opened for signatures at the UN Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.By 1996, IPCC had published comprehensive guidelines that countries could use in carrying out detailed greenhouse gas inventories, and these formed the basis of the UNFCCC Kyoto Protocol, which was adopted a year later and went into effect in 2005. Ever-more-certain science, but stalling policy actionEach subsequent IPCC Assessment Report, especially the most recent, has painted a clearer and more detailed picture of what is happening to the Earth’s climate and the human causes of those changes.Unfortunately, where the early reports included a range of impacts we could expect, reality has demonstrated impacts at the high end of the predicted range. In other words, the scientists in IPCC have been shown to be conservative in their projections of the severity and speed of climate change.In the Working Group I report from the Fifth Assessment Report, global mean temperatures by 2100 are now expected to be 3.7 C° to 4.8 C° (6.7 F° to 8.6 F°) higher than pre-industrial levels — up significantly from the early Assessment Reports. Already an 0.61 C° (1.1 F°) increase in global temperature has been measured.The Working Group II report concluded with “very high confidence” that “impacts from recent climate-related extremes, such as heat waves, droughts, floods, cyclones, and wildfires, reveal significant vulnerability and exposure of some ecosystems and many human systems to current climate variability.”The impacts of climate-related extremes, according to this Working Group II report, will include “alteration of ecosystems, disruption of food production and water supply, damage to infrastructure and settlements, morbidity and mortality, and consequences for mental health and human well-being.”Next week I’ll speculate as to what it will take to bring about real action on climate change. Alex is founder of BuildingGreen, Inc. and executive editor of Environmental Building News. In 2012 he founded the Resilient Design Institute. To keep up with Alex’s latest articles and musings, you can sign up for his Twitter feed.last_img read more

BJP leader booked for burning photos in Barabanki, UP

first_imgA BJP leader in Uttar Pradesh has been booked under the stringent Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act for allegedly burning the photos of BSP supremo Mayawati and SP president Akhilesh Yadav during a Holika Dahan event in Barabanki.The incident took place on March 20 and an FIR was filed at Ramnagar police station in Barabanki late on Friday, the police said on Saturday. The case was registered against Rambabu Dwivedi, State vice-president of the BJP Kisan Morcha.‘Hurled casteist abuses’According to the complaint lodged by SP MLC Rajesh Yadav, Mr. Dwivedi, along with others, burned pictures of Ms. Mayawati and Mr. Akhilesh Yadav during the festival and hurled sexist and casteist abuses at the leaders. A video of the event was also shared on social media.“Even today people of savarna caste want to oppress Dalits and OBCs and they have made their intentions known by setting on fire pictures of leaders of Dalits,” said the MLC in his complaint, adding the video was shared to instigate riots. “A probe is on,” the Barabanki police said on Twitter. Mr. Akhilesh Yadav said the Holika Dahan had sent a clear message that “Dalits and OBC communities will be suppressed and burned under the BJP rule just like they have been for centuries.” “The BJP will soon face the wrath of the deprived sections,” Mr. Akhilesh Yadav tweeted.Mr. Dwivedi, however, sought to justify the incident. “It was not to personally hurt anyone. The event was an effigy burning of the forces of anarchy, corruption and goondaism,” he told The Hindu.last_img read more

Cyclone Bulbul to make a landfall in Sunderban delta

first_imgCyclone Bulbul: Squally weather prevails over Odisha Very severe cyclonic storm Bulbul is likely to make a landfall in the Sunderban delta by today night, officials of the Regional Meteorological Centre in Kolkata said on Saturday. G.K. Das, director of the weather office said that maximum impact of the storm will be felt between 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. on Saturday evening.“It is very likely to weaken gradually, move northeastwards and cross West Bengal – Bangladesh coasts between Sagar Islands (West Bengal) and Khepupara (Bangladesh), across Sunderban delta by late evening/ night of 9 th November (20.00 hrs to 2300 hrs IST) as a severe cyclonic storm with maximum sustained wind speed of 110-120 kmph gusting to 135 kmph,” a press release from the Indian Meteorological Department said.A press statement of IMD also stated that Bulbul at 14.30 hrs lay centered about 90 km south-southeast of Digha 85 km south of Sagar islands and 185 km south-southwest of Kolkata. Mr. Das said that North 24 Parganas and South 24 Parganas will be the two districts which will be affected by the cyclone and the impact will be felt in gangetic West Bengal. In Kolkata wind speed about 50 to 70 kmph when the cyclonic storm crosses.While the weather office have predicted light to moderate rainfall with isolated heavy to very heavy rainfall is continuing over north coastal districts of Odisha and coastal districts of West Bengal.Also Read  Meanwhile, certain areas in the coastal parts of the State in Kolkata have witnessed moderate rainfall since Saturday morning. Digha reported 7cm and Canning 3cm rainfall till 8.30 a.m. over the past 24 hours.“The wind speed is likely to increase after 18.00 hrs on Saturday. The weather is likely to improve from Sunday afternoon,” Mr. Das said.Meanwhile, alert has been issued in all coastal districts of West Bengal and Indian Navy, West Bengal Police and Coast Guard are closely monitoring the situation. Camps have been set up in both North and South 24 Parganas to accommodate 1 lakh people.“District police is coordinating with civil administration for setting up relief camps and Sunderban PD (police district) has setup 55 camps to accommodate 80,500 persons and Basirhat PD has setup 14 camps for 39,000 persons. Situation is being closely monitored,” West Bengal police said.Eastern Naval Command (ENC) in a press statement said that a Naval Aircraft deployed in the Bay of Bengal have been warning fishing boats about the impinging cyclone and advising them to return to the nearest harbour for shelter.“Three IN ships at Visakhapatnam are standby with relief material embarked for immediate deployment to the most affected areas to undertake Humanitarian Aid Distress Relief (HADR) operation. Additionally, 10 diving and medical teams are also kept ready for augmenting rescue and relief efforts in Odisha and West Bengal,” a press statement from Ministry of Defence said.last_img read more

Steve Waugh’s reply to Shane Warne’s ‘most selfish cricketer’ jibe is classic

first_imgSteve Waugh on Friday hit back at Shane Warne after the legendary spinner reignited a long-running feud between the two by calling the former Australia captain a selfish cricketer .In his reply Waugh said he was just doing his job as a captain when he dropped the leg-spinner in 1999 for a Test in the West Indies. Earlier this week, Warne blasted Waugh as “the most selfish cricketer I have played with”. The grudge was related to Waugh’s decision of dropping Warne from the playing XI for the final Test on a tour of the West Indies 17 years ago.It sparked a backlash against the legendary leg-spinner on the social media with Waugh issuing a short statement the next day that read, “I’m not justifying his comments with an answer.”But today, he opened up, explaining that the decision to drop Warne was tough but part of his job as the captain.”To be fair, not only Shane, any player I had to tell was dropped wasn’t easy,” Waugh was quoted as saying by Triple M commercial radio.”It wasn’t easy telling Adam Dale he was dropped for a Test match or Greg Blewett. There were a number of players I had to tell they weren’t playing,” he said.”As a captain, that is the hardest thing to do. But it’s also why you’re the captain, because people expect you to make the tough decisions for the benefit of the team,” Waugh added.”You have got to do that at times and you have got to be prepared not to be liked by everyone.”advertisementlast_img read more

Second camera in iPhone 7 Plus is like human eye and it’s a big deal

first_imgRecently, when Apple announced the iPhone 7 Plus and the iPhone 7, it too jumped on the dual-camera bandwagon. Just like some recent high-end Android phones, the iPhone 7 Plus sports two rear cameras at the back. However, unlike what other phones have, the functionality of this second camera in the iPhone 7 Plus is quite unique. The focal length of the lens used in this second camera is very different and that gives the iPhone 7 Plus an ability to picture a scene just the way humans do. This doesn’t sound much on the paper. But in actual use, it is a big deal. In fact it can be argued that this is one of the next big things when it comes to the cameras in phones.To understand why the second camera in the iPhone 7 Plus is so important, you need to understand why the 50mm lenses are so popular in the world of photography.Like human eyeIt’s a controversial subject among the photographers and photography enthusiasts. But despite all the agreements — and disagreements — it is widely acknowledged that the focal length, or more precisely the field of view, of the human eye is around 50mm in terms of full-frame 35mm film. It’s actually around 43mm, but depending on the perspective it always shifts this way and that. In other words, it means that a 50mm lens, when used on full-frame camera, gives the similar view that a human sees with his eye. This is the reason why the 50mm lenses are so popular. They always click the images that have a field of view that our brain can easily understand and identify. These 50mm images look “natural”. They don’t look wide. They don’t look too up-close. They look just right, most of the time.advertisementIncidentally, this also happens to be pretty close to the view that you will get with the second camera in the iPhone 7 Plus. This camera, in terms of 35mm film, shoots images with 56mm focal length. It’s slightly closer compared to what you will get with the 43mm lens, but yet allows for images that are more candid and natural than the images that the normal phone cameras with their 27mm or 28mm lens shoot.Again, it is hard to convey this in words, but once you use the 2X zoom aka the second lens in the iPhone 7 Plus, you will realise that finally you have the phone that helps you capture a scene in similar sort of dynamics that you are seeing with your eyes. To be precise, here is what the second lens of the iPhone 7 Plus lets you do:Click more candid photos. Images where the subjects fill the frame are always more dynamic and impactful. With the iPhone 7 Plus you can do it. Or at least as well as you can do it with a phone.Click more up-close portraits. With a 27mm or 28mm lens, clicking portraits, which require a bit closer framing, is always difficult. The 2X lens on the iPhone 7 Plus makes it easier.Get better bokeh or in other words the blurred background in images. The bigger focal length helps blur the background. This is one reason why professionals shoot portraits with a 200mm lens. Now, the 2X lens in the iPhone 7 Plus can’t match the pro lenses, or even the good old 85mm, which is considered gold standard for everyday portrait photography, but it is better than the wide-angle lenses that are normally part of the phones. Right way to do dual camera?Of late, a lot of companies are putting two rear cameras in their phones. But all of them are taking a different approach when it comes to the utility of this second camera. Earlier we saw companies using the second camera to capture depth of field and then allowing people to change the focus points after the image was clicked. This wasn’t very useful.Then LG earlier this year came out with rear-camera setup in the G5. But on this phone, one was a regular camera and the other had a wider angle lens. It was more useful than the earlier approach, but still the situations where you want a very wide-angle lens aren’t many in day-to-day shooting. So the second lens in G5 didn’t click with consumers all that much.A 50mm lens gives the view similar to what a human sees with his eye. These 50mm images look “natural”. They don’t look wide. They don’t look too up-close. They look just right, most of the timeadvertisementThen, there is Huawei. In P9 and Honor 8, it has dual-camera setup but both cameras have same focal length. Instead, the second camera in these phones clicks beautiful black & white photos. Also it captures data, which is used to make images better, even when you are clicking images in full colour. This too is useful.But it is clear that in terms of utility, the 2X lens on the iPhone 7 Plus is the better approach. The convenience of getting closer to subjects is unmatched, particularly in day-to-day photography. A focal length of around 50mm makes photos all that more natural. Now that Apple has taken this approach with the iPhone 7 Plus, I expect to see similar — and probably even more useful lenses — to appear as part of the dual-camera setup in the future phones.  Also read: iPhone 7 Plus in Varanasi: Apple’s newest phone meets one of oldest cities in the worldlast_img read more

Misbah-ul-Haq set to miss second Test due to family illness

first_imgCaptain Misbah-ul-Haq is highly unlikely to be available for his country’s second Test against New Zealand in Hamilton on Friday after having to return to Pakistan due to a family illness. (New Zealand thrash Pakistan in 1st Test)Misbah’s father-in-law was critically ill and had been admitted to hospital and placed in intensive care, a Pakistan team spokesman said in an email to Reuters on Sunday.The 42-year-old was due to leave New Zealand on Sunday evening and the spokesman said it would be “difficult” for him to return in time for the match at Seddon Park.Misbah was missing from the post-match formalities after his side lost the first Test by eight wickets to New Zealand at Hagley Oval in Christchurch on Sunday.Vice-captain Azhar Ali, instead addressed the media and said their inspirational captain was heading home to deal with the issue.”Unfortunately his father-in-law is very serious and he has to go back,” Azhar said. “Hopefully things turn out well.”Azhar added Misbah would be a big loss for his side, if he did not make it back in time for the match. Travel time between the two countries is a minimum of 18 hours each way.”We’ll miss him definitely,” Azhar said.”We have to cope with that now and whoever comes into the side will take that opportunity and give us runs, as well as the stability he gives us in the middle.”New Zealand captain Kane Williamson said while Misbah’s ability to galvanise his team and composed middle-order batting would be missed, he doubted the visitors would be under-strength for the Seddon Park game.advertisement”Misbah is a fantastic leader, certainly a great middle order batter and a world class player,” Williamson said.”When you’re without someone like that it is a loss. But (one of the) reasons why they’re number two (in the world) is because they have depth and experience.”I’m sure they’ll find a suitable option for that middle order.”last_img read more