Pakistan favourite to win World Twenty20: Wasim

Former captain advises team’s batsmen to aim for bigger totals.


Saleem Khaliq August 23, 2012

TOWNSVILLE: Former captain Wasim Akram has declared Pakistan favourites to clinch the World Twenty20 that begins in Sri Lanka from September.

Speaking on the sidelines of the ICC U19 World Cup in Australia, Wasim said the Pakistan side possessed the talent to win the tournament, pointing out players like opening batsman Imran Nazir and all-rounder Abdul Razzaq as match-winners.

“Pakistan are favourites,” said Wasim. “Players like Imran and Razzaq have the ability to turn a match on its head and there’s no reason why Pakistan can’t do well. They also have a very good chance against Australia in the upcoming series in the UAE.”

However, the former left-arm fast-bowler also advised the team’s batsmen to adopt a more ‘risk-taking approach’ after witnessing their show during the Sri Lanka series.

“At times, I thought I was watching a Test match. They need to maintain a strike-rate of over 130 and a boundary should be followed by singles to keep the scoreboard moving. Their approach needs to become more adventurous if they want more success in the format.”

The former all-rounder, while ruling out a long-term role with the national team, said he will hold a camp for fast-bowlers in November, adding that he will also consult under-19 and Pakistan ‘A’ team players.

Wasim also praised Junaid Khan, who impressed followers with his performance in the Test series against Sri Lanka.

Meanwhile, the swing king added that the Pakistan Cricket Board’s requirement of hiring a ‘qualified’ coach for the national team was the wrong approach.

“Former players like Javed Miandad who have played over 100 Tests don’t need courses or certificates. These people can be hired for the team as they have been in the past.”

Sri Lanka pick rookie spinner

Hosts Sri Lanka included rank newcomer Akhila Dhananjaya in a 15-man squad for next month’s World Twenty20, while recalling unorthodox spinner Ajantha Mendis.

Dhananjaya, a 19-year-old off-spinner who has yet to play first-class cricket, was selected after taking taking seven wickets in four matches of the ongoing Sri Lanka Premier League Twenty20 competition.

Mendis, 27, last played for Sri Lanka in South Africa in January, having been sidelined with a back injury for home matches against England, Pakistan and India this year.

Mendis, who bowls leg-spin with a unique finger-flicking action, has taken 40 wickets in 21 Twenty20 internationals.

Batsman Dilshan Munaweera and Dhananjaya are the two uncapped players in the squad.

Veteran batsman Kumar Sangakkara and seamer Nuwan Kulasekara, who were injured during last month’s limited-overs series against India, were included subject to passing fitness tests, Sri Lanka Cricket said in a statement.

Darren Bravo, Russell boost Windies

Meanwhile, Darren Bravo and Andre Russell, who both missed the Twenty20 series win over New Zealand in Florida, were included in the West Indies squad.

Bravo had to head back to the West Indies from the tour of England after suffering a groin injury and missed the home series against New Zealand. Russell missed the two T20 games against the Black Caps Zealand in Florida due to an injury he had picked up in England, but played the One-Day International series in the Caribbean which followed.

(with additional input from AFP)

Published in The Express Tribune, August 24th, 2012.

COMMENTS (12)

naveed | 9 years ago | Reply vishnu! Pakistan is the only team which played semies of all three T20 wcup .do not underestimate us
bharat | 9 years ago | Reply

One more things about Pakistan side. They are the most unpredictable, when every one expects them to win, they never win and when everyone expects them to lost, they win

Case in point ,the 2009 Twenty20 World Cup,when no one expected them to win.

Pakistan teams performance can never be predicted.

However, one thing is for sure, the talented players are being kept away from the National team due to politics. The selectors of Pakistan are not honest. Same is with India however the good thing is that with the IPL, the selectors cant hide the good players for too long

They have to select them based especially for One day and 20/20

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