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Pakistan eye Twenty20 World Cup glory

Team flies out to Sri Lanka full of confidence

Shahid Afridi and other team members.
Image Credit: Pankaj Sharma/Gulf News
Shahid Afridi (third from left) along with other team members attend send off function at Park Hyatt Hotel in Dubai.
Gulf News

Dubai: Pakistan will go for the kill in the International Cricket Council (ICC) Twenty20 World Cup, which starts next week in Sri Lanka, according to captain Mohammad Hafeez.

The team will fly to Sri Lanka from Dubai on Tuesday riding on the confidence of having won the Cool & Cool Cup series against Australia here.

”We are carrying the expectations of all the people of Pakistan. Everyone wants us to win the World Cup and my whole team is standing united to achieve that goal,” Hafeez said while attending a send-off party for his team organised by Zaka Ashraf, the Chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board, at the Park Hyatt Hotel on Monday.

“We as a team are confident that we can return to Pakistan with the World Cup as we are all keen to do the job. The support staff is also providing us all the support to realise our objective.

”We all know that if we are united we can gain a good result. We have shown during this series how united we are in our objectives — I feel that this series is the beginning of a bright start for Pakistan cricket. All my players have responded very well to the team and my plans. They all want to live up to their expectations. Everyone in my team is keen to bring back glory to Pakistan.”

Head coach Dav Whatmore also expressed confidence in the team. “You can be assured that this team will give their best. Twenty20 is a format which is very volatile, one over can change the fortunes of the team.

“It is a format where one has to play at their best within a short span. We have good warm-up matches before our first match of the World Cup and we have already gained momentum. I am sure the boys will carry it into the World Cup.”

Mohammad Akram, the bowling coach, strongly believes his team’s attack is one of the finest in the world. “When a team has talent it can challenge the best. We have the best talent and what makes it exciting is that as a team everyone is gelled together. We are also blessed with a fine coach in Whatmore, who is an institution. We are all learning a lot from him.”

Naveed Akram Cheema, the manager of the team who has played a huge role in keeping them together, added: “Never before have I seen such unity in the team and the whole team is a talented lot. I have no doubt that that this team can bring back the Twenty20 World Cup back to Pakistan.”