Waqar looks to rediscover Pakistan's trademark flair
Waqar Younis, the Pakistan coach, will look to rediscover the team's trademark flair as they defend their World Twenty20 title in the West Indies. "I will try to induct the same kind of aggression and fire in the team, which was Pakistan's trademark in 1990s as it is necessary for us to win and retain the title," Waqar said, ahead of the team's departure for the Caribbean.
While he was confident of his side's chances, he avoided making predictions about the result. "Twenty20 is a different type of cricket where no one can predict anything but it is important to perform to your potential. You have to bowl, bat and field well on the given day in order to win the match," he said.
Captain Shahid Afridi noted that his side would miss Umar Gul, the world's leading T20I wicket-taker, but reiterated that the rest of his bowling attack was good enough to make up for his absence. "Umar is an expert of reverse swing. He could have been lethal on the slow pitches in the West Indies but all the other available players are also equally good and eager to perform in the mega event," Afridi said.
Afridi reposed confidence in his spinners, who will play a key role on the slow and low wickets in the West Indies. "Saeed Ajmal, Mohammad Hafeez and Abdul Rehman are all talented spinners and can play the role of match-winner against any team," Afridi said.
Despite their players not featuring in the recently concluded IPL, Pakistan are recognized as a dangerous Twenty20 outfit after their exploits in the first two editions of the tournament - they lost to India in the 2007 finals, before going all the way in 2009.
The team's manager, Yawar Saeed told PPI that the team had put behind the disappointments and controversies from the disastrous tour of Australia and were looking forward to the World Twenty20. "Whatever happened during the Australian tour is history now and the players are looking forward to give their best in the championship," he said.
He reiterated that the players' discipline was being monitored closely, in the aftermath of the Australian tour and the punishment that followed. "Those who are in the team I think have learnt their lessons and there is no disharmony in the team now. The players know their boundaries and they know they can't cross those boundaries. If any player does indulge in indiscipline no time will be wasted in taking action against him," he said.