WC 2015 team profile: Can Pakistan repeat 1992 this time?

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Pakistan will feel nostalgic while taking the field in the 2015 World Cup for it was in Australia that they had won the title in 1992, the first time the tournament was held Down Under. Can the men in green repeat what they had done under Imran Khan 23 years ago?

Pakistan have won 36 out of 64 matches (26 losses, two no results) they have played in World Cup cricket between 1975 and 2011 with their best performance registered in the fifth edition held in 1992.


In the 2015 World Cup, Pakistan are clubbed with India, South Africa, West Indies, Zimbabwe, Ireland and the United Arab Emirates in Pool B.

Here is Pakistan's schedule at WC 2015: Vs India (February 15), Vs West Indies (Feb 21), Vs Zimbabwe (March 1), Vs UAE (Mar 4), Vs South Africa (Mar 7), Vs Ireland (Mar 15)

2015 WC squad: Misbah ul Haq (c), Squad Ahmed Shehzad, Mohammad Hafeez, Sarfaraz Ahmed (wk), Younis Khan, Harris Sohail, Umar Akmal, Shoaib Maqsood, Shahid Afridi, Yasir Shah, Mohammad Irfan, Junaid Khan, Ehsan Adil, Sohail Khan, Wahab Riaz

Pakistan's best performance: Champions in 1992 (defeated England by 22 runs at Melbourne Cricket Ground)

Semi-finalists: 1979, 1983, 1987, 2011

Pakistan's success percentage in WC: 58.06% (played 64, won 36, lost 26, no results 2)

Highest team score: 349 vs Zimbabwe in 2007

Lowest team score: 74 vs England in 1992

Most number of matches in WC for Pak: Wasim Akram (38)

Pak's highest scorer in WC: Javed Miandad (1083 runs in 33 matches at an average of 43.32)

Most number of wickets for Pak in WC: Wasim Akram (55 wickets in 38 matches, best 5 for 28)

Highest individual score by a Pakistani in WC: Imran Nazir (160 vs Zimbabwe in 2011)

Best bowling figures by a Pakistani in WC: Shahid Afridi (5 for 16 vsKenya in 2011)

Biggest win for Pakistan in WC: Vs the West Indies by 10 wickets in 2011, Vs Kenya by 205 runs in 2011

Narrowest win for Pakistan in WC: Vs the West Indies by 1 wicket in 1987, vs Australia by 10 runs in 1999

Biggest loss for Pak in WC: Vs the West Indies by 10 wickets in 1992, vs England by 112 runs in 2003

Narrowest loss for Pak in WC: Vs England by 14 runs in 1979, vs West Indies by 1 wicket in 1975

Looking back at Pakistan's WC performance in each World Cup since 1975:

1975: Led by Asif Iqbal, Pakistan had lost two of their three matches in the group stage and failed to progress to the knock-out stage.

The team's only win came against the then minnows Sri Lanka but lost against Australia and West Indies, the eventual champions. While they lost by 73 runs against the Aussies, they put up a gritty fight against the Caribbeans but lost by just one wicket.

Pakistan have lost all their 5 World Cup encounters against India till date

1979: The second edition, also held in England, saw a much better performance from Pakistan. Led by Iqbal this time as well, the Pakistanis finished second in their group after defeating Canada and Australia but lost to group champions England by a mere 14 runs. But they were no match for the Caribbeans, who bagged their second successive world title that year, and lost by 43 runs in the semifinal.

1983: Pakistan finished with a 50-50 record in the group stage by winning three and losing as many matches. They were tied with New Zealand at 12 points but advanced to the semifinals owing to a just-about better net run-rate.

The team led by Imran Khan met the West Indies in the semifinals and lost it yet again, this time by eight wickets. This was the third straight loss for Pakistan against the mighty Windies in as many encounters.

1987: Led by Imran Khan again, Pakistan had a terrific start to the first World Cup played in the sub-continent and finished first in the group with five victories out of six matches. Their only loss came against the West Indies whom they also defeated once in the group stage.

But Pakistan lost their third straight semifinal loss in the World Cup when they lost to eventual champions Australia by 18 runs in Lahore.

1992: Pakistan came from nowhere to pick their first World Cup title in this edition played in Australia and New Zealand. In the first World Cup to be played in colours and white balls and also under the lights, Imran Khan-led Pakistan had a very outing in the beginning.

They lost to the West Indies by 10 wickets, lost to arch-rivals India in their first World Cup clash and were also skittled out for 74 by England (though they received one point after the match was washed out).

The West Indies' shocking loss to Australia in a crucial game put Pakistan into the semi-finals and it was no looking back for the team from there.

Inzamam-ul-Haq's unforgettable knock of 60 off 37 balls in the semifinals against a resurgent New Zealand took his team into the final and Wasim Akram's match-turning spell against England gave the finishing touches to 40-year-old Imran Khan's final dream.

1996: Pakistan had a good start to this edition under the captaincy of Wasim Akram and reached the knock-out stage after winning four out of five matches in the group. Their only loss came against the powerful South Africans who won all their group matches.

But the holders saw their dreams dashed in the quarterfinals when they lost against arch-rivals India by 39 runs despite having a flying start by their openers Aamir Sohail and Saeed Anwar. Sohail captained the side in the absence of an injured Akram and this match saw the final World Cup appearance of Javed Miandad who scored 38 off 64 balls.

1999: The World Cup was back to England after 16 years and Pakistan was back into the final. Apart from an unbelievable loss against debutant Bangladesh, the Pakistanis won all their matches in the group stage including those against 1996 runners-up Australia and their former nemesis West Indies.

They lost to India in the super six stage but yet made to the semifinals where they trounced New Zealand by nine wickets. But Akram's men were no match for the Australians and were shot out for 132 in the final, the lowest score recorded in the title-winning match in the World Cup.

2003: This edition was a forgettable one for every Pakistani. Led by Waqar Younis, the ageing side finished fifth in the group stage, just above minnows Holland and Namibia. Inzamam-ul-Haq had a horrendous World Cup and India beat Pakistan for the third time in the history of the tournamant, adding salt to the injury.

Pakistan won just two matches in the 2003 edition held in South Africa and lost three (against Australia, England and India) while one match was washed out.

2007: Similar to the 2003 edition, this too was another shocker for Pakistan cricket. Starting with a loss against hosts West Indies, Pakistan could never recover and even lost to debutant Ireland in a rain-hit match.

The team led by Inzamam-ul-Haq failed to reach the second round with just one win under their belt (against Zimbabwe) and the mysterious death of their coach Bob Woolmer a day after Pakistan's surprise defeat to Ireland made the 2007 World Cup perhaps the most forgettable in their cricket history.

2011: Pakistan had a magnificent start to their 2011 World Cup campaign in Sri Lanka (they could not host the tournament along with India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh owing to security reasons) and topped the group with five wins and one loss (against New Zealand) and hammered the West Indies by 10 wickets in the quarter-finals to make the last four after 12 years.

But the team faced their second World Cup loss in the sub-continent (and fifth overall) against India when they went down to the latter by 29 runs in the semi-final in Mohali.

The loss to India in the 2011 WC semifinal meant Pakistan lost to the eventual champions four times in the semifinals after 1979, 1983 and 1987.

Oneindia News

Story first published: Monday, January 19, 2015, 9:54 [IST]
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