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  1. #1
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    Wasim Akram speaks about the 1992 World Cup

    http://m.indiatoday.in/story/world-c.../1/417158.html

    As a side, we were doing quite well in one-day cricket in the late 1980s. We had won*the Nehru Cup in 1989 and the Australasia Cup in 1990. We had the confidence that any top-six side has going into a World Cup. I remember (captain) Imran Khan took us to Australia three-four weeks before the World Cup.

    We would do 10 laps of the MCG-we used to sprint-then I would bowl and field for two hours. Basically we would train for five-six hours every day. Imran wanted us to get supremely fit before the World Cup. That was the reason for all the hard work.

    Before the start of the tournament we lost my strike partner and then the fastest bowler in the world, Waqar Younis. In the practice matches, Waqar complained of a back problem. It was later diagnosed as stress fracture of the back. Waqar and I had formed a very good partnership, so it was a big loss to me when he had to pull out of the tournament.

    We lost the first couple of practice matches. But we did not lose hope. Then the tournament started with the match at the MCG and the West Indies were our first opponents. We got 200-odd, yet we lost the match. The second match was against Zimbabwe which was an easy win for us.

    Then we went to Adelaide for the match that literally turned the tournament around for us. It was raining that day in Adelaide. The ball usually does not seam in Adelaide but that day it was, as we were bowled out for just 74. Adelaide is one of the driest cities in Australia, but that whole day it kept drizzling. We struggled a lot as a batting unit as England really tied us in knots with their accurate bowling. England's seam bowlers used the conditions very well. But still we got one point out of nowhere as rain washed out play and we felt relieved. Our captain kept saying from the start that we will win the World Cup. He seemed to have that confidence in us more than we did ourselves.

    Since I was struggling to control the white ball, I was bowling too many wides and sometimes overstepping too. Before our match against Australia in Perth, I woke up to read the local newspaper and went to the sports page. I saw big screaming headlines which read something to the effect of 'Imran wants Wasim to bowl just quick, forget about no-balls and wide balls'. That worked like magic for me as I saw it as an opportunity to prove to my captain that I can deliver on his belief. From there on, my confidence went up. After the World Cup, when I spoke to Imran, he said that was done to get me pumped up. It did work wonders as I bowled with renewed vigour with the new ball and was really quick in the final few matches.

    We were to play New Zealand in our last league match. Now, New Zealand were on a roll, having won seven of their previous league matches on the trot. Their eighth match was against us. This is where my confidence shot up further as I picked up four wickets including the likes of Andrew Jones and the very dangerous Martin Crowe. Rameez Raja was in top form in the tournament and he got his second hundred in that league match against New Zealand. We did not have much to chase down, but Rameez played a very cultured knock as we eased to a win.

    Our confidence was now sky-high because we started believing in ourselves. We had to play New Zealand in the semi-finals and were now confident of beating them yet again. Just imagine, New Zealand had won seven of their eight league matches, lost just once-and that too to us!

    We had the best wishes of the whole of Pakistan. It was the month of Ramzan and people were fasting and were up all night in Pakistan. They were praying for us, watching us as we moved into the semis. We could feel a divine force was behind us as we played the semi-final.

    Interestingly, Inzy (Inzamam-ul-Haq) was throwing up a night before the semi-final and did not appear to be in a condition to play. But Imran insisted that Inzy should play despite his fever. What happened in the semi-final, we all know. Inzy just went berserk as he showed the full range of his strokes. We had a stiff target of 263 but Inzamam came at the right time and was well guided by the experienced Javed Miandad.

    We now had to play the most experienced one-day side, England, in the final. They play so much one-day cricket in the county circuit and have so much experience because of that. But we knew that if we make it to the final, we can win the tournament. We had that kind of confidence.

    We were warming up at the MCG before the final. In those days, we would get just a playing kit and tracksuit, nothing more. If we needed training gear and so on, we had to go out and buy it ourselves. I went and bought a T-shirt which said 'Just do it', Imran bought a T-shirt with a tiger on it. In the team talk before the final, Imran said we are cornered tigers. We were all young and had no idea what he meant. Then he said it in simple words: when a tiger is cornered, it attacks. That's what we need to do. Then it was easier to understand.

    In the final, it was a brave decision by a subcontinental captain to bat first. Imran promoted himself to number three to control the innings. He just held one end up with Javed. They both batted sensibly, kept the scoreboard ticking and laid the foundation for big hitting at the end. That was the perfect thing for Inzy and myself because we just went out and smashed it. In the end we made 249.

    We knew that we had a total that we could defend. England lost some early wickets but we had to contend with a sticky partnership between Neil Fairbrother and Allan Lamb. They were two very dangerous one-day players. In the second water break, Imran came to me and said, try putting your everything into it, get a bit of reverse swing and give me a two-over burst. I told the captain, no worries, I can do that, but I will try that with Lamb since Fairbrother is my team mate at Lancashire and knows all my tricks.

    I told Imran I would bowl outswing to Lamb and get him to play and get him bowled. Imran said try around the wicket. That day I must have had the backing of god-when I bowled, the ball pitched on a length near the off-stump and he was castled. We celebrated like the World Cup was ours. The next ball to Chris Lewis was planned. I tried bowling a yorker because the batsman had assumed that I will bowl an inswinging delivery. I tried to bowl with reverse swing. I was just 24-25, and had the confidence to run in with pace. It was a dream come true, as I got Lewis with that delivery. You don't realise what you have when you play. But now, more than 10 years after retiring, I realise what I did that day.

    When we finally won the World Cup, it took some time for us to realise the achievement. When Rameez took the catch it was an unbelievable moment. We did not sleep that night! It took me two days to realise what we had done. It was only when we landed in Lahore did the whole achievement sink in. The journey from Lahore airport to the hotel, which usually takes about 20 minutes, took us seven hours. We were taken on an open-top bus. It felt like the whole of Pakistan had descended on the city.

    The same thing happened in Karachi, Pindi (Rawalpindi), Peshawar. I had never seen anything like that in my entire career. That feeling of being a champion was something different. The whole country was happy and united in celebrating with us. India must have felt the same way when they won in 1983 and 2011. I am sure Pakistanis worldwide felt like celebrating with us in 1992.

    That tournament in 1992 was also exciting because of the fact that we were playing in coloured clothing with two new white balls. We played South Africa for the first time in the tournament. It was an eye-opener. Who can forget that Jonty (Rhodes) run out of Inzy! That was an iconic picture that we can never forget. They were out of international cricket for 21 years but still made it to the semi-final. It was a dream return to international cricket for them. What I remember most about South Africa is their fielding, which was phenomenal.

    Now, 23 years on, as Pakistan heads back to Australia, the same feeling is somehow not there. It is very difficult to make a prediction about Pakistan this time, but that is the beauty of Pakistani cricket. Not having Saeed Ajmal, an unbelievable bowler, is a blow, but we have a good enough attack. Junaid Khan is injured, so Bilawal Bhatti is likely to come in. Bhatti is an all-rounder and will add balance. Then there is (Mohammad) Irfan. I am very happy with the bowling options. In batting there is experience in Misbah(-ul-Haq) and Younis (Khan).

    Overall, if they invoke the spirit of 1992, block initially and build towards the end, then I am sure we can recreate the magic of that year. As always, 'Dil Dil Pakistan' is my song as we enter the tournament.

    Wasim Akram was the Man of the Match in the 1992 World Cup final

  2. #2
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    Wonderful memories.

    The final is a match that I literally know off by heart.



  3. #3
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    That's what WC does to you.

    But here we have some people who say Test series victory in Aus or SA or old WI is greater.

    Yes it could be a greater exhibition of skill but man....WC wins are celebrated and remembered for decades.

    Nothing inspires a nation like a WC win.

    Nothing.


    Truth is treason in an empire of lies.

  4. #4
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    Some of the commentary from the 92 game will be itched in memory for as long as I live.

    'It's a wonderful catch, but he's dropped it'

    'Subtract Lewis from that list'

  5. #5
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    I still have the DT from both on the day and after the victory.

  6. #6
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    What if Pakistan and India had not won the 92 and 83 cup respectively

    Woudl we be talking about cricket the way we are now?

  7. #7
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    Imran and Inzi on the 92 WC


  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by FreeBird View Post
    Imran and Inzi on the 92 WC

    Funny Inzi from 4:45 to 5:30

  9. #9
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    And if you pay attention to the part when Imran talks about Inzi's selection, you will realize that our selection committees have been traditionally very, very poor and inept.

    I only wish if we knew who were those 3 scouts that identified Inzi from the domestic list of rejected players and recommended him to Imran?
    THOSE are the kind of people we need in our selection committee.

    If I get a chance to Imran again, I will definitely ask him.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by London_Lahori View Post
    Some of the commentary from the 92 game will be itched in memory for as long as I live.

    'It's a wonderful catch, but he's dropped it'

    'Subtract Lewis from that list'
    "It's up in the air, he's getting under it! This could be Victory!!!! Pakistan win the WORLD CUP! A MAGNIFICENT performance infront of 87,000 people, Imran Khan has lead his side to victory"


    Ah, so this is what it feels like

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by shaz619 View Post
    "It's up in the air, he's getting under it! This could be Victory!!!! Pakistan win the WORLD CUP! A MAGNIFICENT performance infront of 87,000 people, Imran Khan has lead his side to victory"
    Have you seen all the Classic games available on sky demand? It's cool, I watched the 92 semi last night along with some other 03 games. 20 min highlights each game.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by London_Lahori View Post
    Have you seen all the Classic games available on sky demand? It's cool, I watched the 92 semi last night along with some other 03 games. 20 min highlights each game.
    I've watched their specials a long while back they're so awesome, i always wanted to get the DVD of the 92 world cup but sky did a pretty good job covering it in the world cup special


    Ah, so this is what it feels like

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by FreeBird View Post
    Funny Inzi from 4:45 to 5:30
    The captaincy talk is in second clip of this interview you posted the first clip bro


    " It is true, Pakistan cricket is not defined by planning, it is not defined by team work and it is not defined by an entire match. It is defined by moments, moments of inspiration, moments of magic, moments when the unsung become the sung, when the world starts rotating in the opposite direction, when the abnormal becomes the normal, when delusion becomes logic it is when the stars align. "

  14. #14
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    "Ramiz raja...running with the ball...judged that beautifully! Pakistan on fire here at the Melbourne Cricket ground!"

  15. #15
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    "As a cricketing nation we never looked back after the 1992 World Cup victory" : Wasim Akram

    Wasim Akram speaking about the 1992 World Cup:

    "We still didnt think we had done something big - we were just too excited to think about it but only when we landed in Pakistan, we realized that we had achieved something"

    "It was a big deal for me, especially me being 25, having played alongside my colleagues for last 6-7 years and then winning the World Cup in Australia"

    "We had enthusiasm and we had love for cricket, and we are focussed"

    "The whole country was watching this and it was like we put Pakistan on the world cricket map with this victory"

    "As a cricketing nation we never looked back after this"

    "Some of the players from that squad became commentators, some became coachs, others became businessmen and one became a leader of the country"

    "Imran Bhai kept on saying to us that we will win, that I have make a hospital for the poor, my intenations are clean"

    "We all believed that when we got a chance we would peak and we peaked at the right time"

    "I was having breakfast and read a comment from Imran in a presser that he wanted Wasim to bowl as fast and not worry about wides and noballs, and that gave me a lot of confidence"

    "That jump from Javed Miandad in front of Kiran More was classic - only Javed Bhai can do that"


    For the latest updates on Cricket, follow @PakPassion on Twitter

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by sensible-indian-fan View Post

    WC wins are celebrated and remembered for decades.

    Nothing inspires a nation like a WC win.

    Nothing.
    I watched part of the 2019 final in a beachfront pub and was the only person watching.

    I think most Britons don’t even know England won the World Cup, or even that cricket has a World Cup.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert View Post
    I watched part of the 2019 final in a beachfront pub and was the only person watching.

    I think most Britons don’t even know England won the World Cup, or even that cricket has a World Cup.
    It's lost its charm now.

    Pretty much everything in cricket has.

    India won a series in Aus and Indian fans barely celebrated.

    Tho WC and SC fans still have a connection.


    Truth is treason in an empire of lies.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by sensible-indian-fan View Post
    It's lost its charm now.

    Pretty much everything in cricket has.

    India won a series in Aus and Indian fans barely celebrated.

    Tho WC and SC fans still have a connection.
    Pakistan must hold a world cup to bring back its lost charm. Heck, I wouldn't mind even if we don't win that world cup as long as Indians get kicked out in group stages against BD

    A complete Indian tour of Pakistan can definitely bring the craze back.

    Wishful thinking...

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert View Post
    I watched part of the 2019 final in a beachfront pub and was the only person watching.

    I think most Britons don’t even know England won the World Cup, or even that cricket has a World Cup.
    Are you kidding? The World Cup final was everywhere.

    It was boosted by the fact that was going on side by side with the greatest Wimbledon final. It was all over the news / social media / memes. And then London itself was just crazy. The people gathered at Trafalgar Square etc.

  20. #20
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    92 World Cup gets a lot of negative references in Pakistan for particularly political reasons.

    But those who did not witness it, do not know its magic.

    It was magic.


  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saj View Post
    Wonderful memories.

    The final is a match that I literally know off by heart.
    Semi’s was much more of nerve wrecker. It had tightly gripped us all till the end.
    The entire Pakistan was on Mussallah praying for divine intervention till Moin hit that six.
    What a relief it was!


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