Pakistan hails 'wonderful' Asia Cup crown

By AFP
Published: March 23, 2012
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Pakistan clinched only their second Asia Cup title in Dhaka late Thursday. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

Pakistan clinched only their second Asia Cup title in Dhaka late Thursday. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

KARACHI: Pakistan on Friday celebrated a nail-biting victory in the Asia Cup after a two-run win over Bangladesh that was hailed as providing some much-needed relief to the country.

Pakistan clinched only their second Asia Cup title in Dhaka late Thursday, sending delirious fans pouring onto the streets in major cities to celebrate, though some missed the action on the field because of power cuts.

“Our cricket team gives us joy, otherwise we’re obsessed with problems of inflation, loadshedding (power cuts) and lack of security,” said fan Tehmina Siddiqui, celebrating in Karachi’s Clifton area.

Congratulatory messages from President Asif Ali Zardari, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani and other political leaders praised the team effort, captain Misbahul Haq’s leadership and new Australian coach Dav Whatmore.

Despite orders from the prime minister for no power cuts during Sunday’s match against arch-rivals India and Thursday’s final, fans still complained of outages at home.

“We had to come out and watch the matches on big screens in the streets as power outages were as frequent as ever,” complained Raza Elahi, a pupil at middle school.

Former players were delighted, having been sceptical that Pakistan would perform well after being routed 4-0 by England in a one-day series last month.

“It’s a wonderful performance,” said Moin Khan, who was captain when Pakistan won their first Asia Cup, in 2000, also in Dhaka. “Our players have given the nation great joy and we are proud of them.”

“Congratulations to our team for winning the title,” said chief selector Iqbal Qasim, who also had warm words for Bangladesh.

“They beat India and Sri Lanka in the tournament and proved a tough opponent,” he said.

Bangladesh proved that “they are no more the minnows of cricket”, said Qasim. “I hope they will carry on the good work and be reckoned as one of the major forces in Asia and the world.”

Former captain and director general of the Pakistan Cricket Board, Javed Miandad, said the dramatic win was testament to the side’s never-say-die attitude.

“It’s a great win and showed the fighting abilities of the team, but the hosts played very well,” said Miandad, a member of Pakistan’s World Cup winning team in 1992.

But another former captain, Rashid Latif, cautioned that Pakistan must not run away with themselves and should “sit down and analyse our weaknesses”.

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Reader Comments (12)

  • Usman S.
    Mar 23, 2012 - 3:05PM

    Well done boys for bringing back the trophy.

    At least the victory has given something to the country to celebrate after unending barrage of bad news and gloom.

    However, when the euphoria dies down, the team management and the selectors need to work on the weaknesses, especially in the batting. Bangladesh are no Australia or South Africa, and scoring a listless 236 runs on a batting track against an ordinary bowling side, shows the real “depth” of our batting. And by the way, if it was not for an unlikely hero in Sarfraz, Pakistan would have been rubbing their hands in disgust at themselves for putting up such a pathetic display with the bat.

    The man of the match award, should therefore, have gone to Sarfraz and not to an over-rated Afridi, who somehow is getting into the habit of delivering not too often.

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  • Muhammad Hanif
    Mar 23, 2012 - 6:33PM

    Welldone Green Shirts for bringing back the trophy…….Great Game :)

    Keep it Up

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  • Arjun_Toronto
    Mar 23, 2012 - 6:34PM

    This is not the world cup, just an Asia cup, additionally you guys lost to India.. So cool down.

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  • Truthteller
    Mar 23, 2012 - 6:47PM

    Congrats Pakistan ~ From an Indian

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  • Nas
    Mar 23, 2012 - 7:07PM

    @arjun toronto…grapes are sour. i feel sorry for you as you cant digest this victory and are venting under the name arjun and arjun- toronto.

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  • uXuf
    Mar 23, 2012 - 7:30PM

    @Arjun_Toronto: Additionally and incidentally India failed to make it to the final. Your comment on this very item portrays how you’ve been grilled over by the fact that Pakistan made it to the final AND won the cup.

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  • antanu.g
    Mar 23, 2012 - 7:44PM

    @arjun
    a win is a win…be sporting. would you have made the same comments had india won the cup after losing to pakistan? dont forget we lost to bengladesh and bangladesh were beaten by pakistan.what does it prove. kearn something from pak team who praised bangladesh profusely. and what did we do….instead of giving credit to bangladesh for win against us…we only blamed our bowlers.afridi seems to be vindicated when he said that india has no heart and sporting spirit.Recommend

  • Irfan
    Mar 23, 2012 - 7:58PM

    The game of pick and choose games to perform has started again in pakistan team by non other than Afridi. Here i m not just blaming him for no reason. You will realise this fact only by going through the variation in bowling speed and variety of spin in afridis game when he was a captain and now when he is not a captain. Afridi knows that his strenght is bowling with mix speed and variation and not try to beat the bat with leg breaks that too continuosly.

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  • Raja
    Mar 23, 2012 - 11:08PM

    Congrats to Pakistan team……Dont carry away work on your weaknesses specially batting. I think we need young blood for T20 and ODI’s for good future of Pakistan keeping in mind world cups T20 & ODI

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  • Sultan Qaboos
    Mar 24, 2012 - 7:10PM

    @Arjun_Toronto:
    See Who got the Cup. So, Just shut Up. and be ashamed as you lost to BD, Take a Hike.

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  • Pak 1
    Mar 25, 2012 - 10:52AM

    @Arjun_Toronto:
    Teams that have already stamped a ticket to the final, don’t really care about the “heroics” of the other. It was nice of you to let us run experiments on india.

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  • Ahsan Khan
    Mar 26, 2012 - 10:38AM

    Dear India,

    Aaaaaaahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

    Sincerely,

    PakistanRecommend

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