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Good outing in World Cup would help revive Pak cricket: Waqar

Posted By: Pti

Karachi, Feb 20 (PTI) The team management of Pakistan''sWorld Cup squad today reiterated the importance of thenational team doing well in the the 14-team mega event to helprevive the state of cricket in the country.

Coach Waqar Younis and manager Intikhab Alam told thePakistani media before the team''s departure from Dhaka toColombo that a good performance from the players will lead torevival of Pakistan cricket.

"I have no doubt in my mind about the importance of thisWorld Cup for the Pakistan team. It is a very big event initself but for Pakistan cricket, it becomes all the moresignificant because of the many problems our cricket has facedin recent times," Waqar said.

The former Pakistan captain insisted that his playerswere also aware of the importance of doing well in thetournament.

"They know that if they perform well it will go a longway in the revival of our cricket. There is no doubt that ourpeople need a big victory and this would also reignite thepassion for cricket in the country," he said.

The Pakistan coach said he was satisfied with thepreparations and the mood in the team ahead of their openingmatch against Kenya in Sri Lanka on February 23.

"We have spent around 10 days in Bangladesh and playedtwo warm-up matches and in this time we have utilised all ourenergies to boost our fielding and shore up our physicalfitness, which is going to be crucial in the matches."

Waqar pointed out that the squad didn''t lack in skills,talent or experience. "The two things we need to focus on inthis World Cup is being in top fitness and able to handle thepressure situations," he said.

Waqar said Pakistan cricket had got a boost after theteam''s fine performance in New Zealand and now needs to carrythe momentum into the World Cup.

"In a way it is good we are playing a match before wemeet hosts Sri Lanka on the 26th because that match is goingto be vital to our chances of qualifying for the knockoutstages," he said.

Alam also highlighted the importance of doing well in thetournament. "Pakistan cricket has seen a lot of ups and downsin recent times and it has hit our fans and supporters backhome. The team needs to do well, it will be great for Pakistancricket especially when you don''t have foreign teams playingin our country at the moment," Alam said.

Alam, who was the coach when Pakistan won the World Cupin 1992 and the T20 meet in 2009, said if the team managed towin this edition of the tournament it would be the biggestmoment of his life.

"What more can one ask for then to be involved in thewinning of three World Cups. It would be fantastic for meindividually, but for Pakistan cricket it would be a shot inthe arm," he said.

Story first published: Sunday, February 20, 2011, 15:30 [IST]
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