Pakistan’s cricket fans are a die-hard breed. They back their team regardless of the fact that the men have let them down often, and are likely to continue to do so, in the future. So if you asked a Pakistan backer about his team’s prospects at the World Cup, he is likely to give you these 10 reasons why Pakistan are certain to win the tournament:
1. Zero Pressure of Expectation: With no expectation of any sort weighing on them, Pakistan can play their free-flowing game without pressure, and as proved in the past, they are at their most dangerous when they are allowed to do so.
2. Afridi: The Afridi factor always looms in any ODI that Pakistan play in. In many ways, Afridi is the quintessence of Pakistan’s cricket — capable of doing anything on one day and failing abjectly the next. But the Pathan has a sense of history, as he proved when he helped Pakistan lift the 2008 T20 World Cup. History beckons again in 2011.
3. Umar Gul: While all the media attention has focussed on the likes of Shoaib Akhtar, Md Asif and Aamer, Gul has been a constant factor among Pakistan’s new ball operators in the last few years. With his penchant for taking wickets, often against the run of play, Gul can never be dismissed as a match-winning factor.
4. Younis Khan: Younis, who is one of the few seniors in a side that has undergone the ravages of the spot-fixing affair, led Pakistan to victory in the 2008 T20 WC, and will seek inspiration from that experience to guide his side to its destination.
5. Misbah Ul Haq: Misbah has still not got over his misjudgement in the last over of the 2007 T20 WC final that cost his team the title, and will do his utmost to atone, at this year’s grand event..
6. Umar Akmal: Umar has been a sensational find of the recent troubled times. Like Inzamam announced his arrival at the 1992 WC, this year’s event could be Umar’s big stage.
7. A Young, New Match-winner: Imran Nazir’s hitting ability got amplified atl the 2007 T20 WC where his doings with the bat helped take his side to the final. Pakistan have made it a habit of throwing up new stars at world events, and this time could be no different, with a team full of raw youngsters.
8. Bob Woolmer: Many in Pakistan feel that only a World Cup win will set Bob Woolmer’s ghost at rest. The death of the Pakistan coach in mysterious circumstances during the 2007 event cast a shadow on their cricket from which Pakistan are yet to emerge.
9. Spot-fixing Trio: The spot-fixing scam came at a time when the Pakistan team appeared to be rebuilding nicely, with test wins against Australia and England. Protestng against the scam, disgusted fans took out processions of donkeys named after the tainted trio — with placards to the effect — and beat the animals with sticks and slippers. Pakistan would want to win the WC and demonstrate that they can do it without the spot-fixers.
10. India: There’s nothing that will thrill Pakistan players and fans alike than the sight of their captain holding aloft the World Cup ON INDIAN SOIL.
About the Author (Author Profile)
Jinxatious is the Chief Editor of SportingAttitude.com
An avid writer, on an eclectic range of subjects, he brings to bear editorial experience garnered with a national newspaper in South-East Asia. He also has sportscasting experience, as a cricket commentator, and his passion for sport extends beyond Cricket, to Football, Tennis, and Olympic Sports.