KARACHI: Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi feels the fresh match-fixing allegations against his side have acted as motivation for the rejuvenated Pakistan side as they search for the series-levelling win at Lord’s today.
Trailing 2-0, Pakistan bounced back with a fought out victory courtesy Umar Gul heroics at The Oval prior to the fresh bout of allegations.
“The players are more determined to win and that’s all they are thinking about now in order to prove themselves,” Afridi told The Express Tribune ahead of the crunch tie in London. “The allegations were made to pressurise us but we are not concerned and just focusing on winning the match.”
Afridi will become only the third Pakistani after Inzamamul Haq and Wasim Akram to play 300 One-Day Internationals and, according to the captain, a win for the team is what he is looking for.
“Obviously, the landmark’s an achievement but I can only celebrate the feat after winning the match. We’re in good touch and the win at The Oval has given us the confidence to carry on. Gul’s a a real fighter and an asset to team. His performance did wonders and he has motivated the youngsters in the team.”
The match also marks the return of Afridi to the venue where he announced his retirement from Test cricket after just one match as the captain — a 150-run loss against Australia.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 20th, 2010.
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