November 18, 2000

Saqlain terms Thorpe's innings as best

Lahore, Nov 17: Saqlain Mushtaq said on Friday that the urge for a 'perfect 10' was there but refused to blame England for denying him the lifetime chance.

"England declared because they are trying to make a match out of it. I had my chances but they were lost. The ball went astray instead of falling into the hands of the fielders.

"If England had tried to play unsporting, they would have declared at the fall of the eighth wicket," Saqlain said after his magnificent career-best bowling performance.

Saqlain termed Graham Thorpe's innings as the best, adding that he capitalized on the experience of playing alongside him at Surrey. "He knew how I bowl and picked up the delivery at the time when I was releasing it. But I struggled to get him out despite knowing him."

Saqlain, when asked if he would like to bowl again in this match after turning down 74 overs, he said with a smile: "Oh no! My fingers are hurting. They need rest. But if required, I will not shirk."