‘Hungry’ Pak, West Indies can “really be dangerous teams” in World Cup 2011: Sohail

Saturday, February 19, 2011

ISLAMABAD - Although most critics are backing India and Sri Lanka to bag the ICC World Cup glory, Pakistan and West Indies can “really be dangerous” in the tournament, former Pakistan captain Aamir Sohail has said.

“Four teams- Australia, South Africa, Sri Lanka and India seem to have the best chances of reaching the semifinals. But personally, I believe that Pakistan and West Indies can really be dangerous teams,” The News quoted Sohail, as saying.

“They’ve got experience. They’ve got talent. They’ve got match-winners. The only point is how hungry they are,” he added.

The World Cup is to be jointly hosted by India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh from February 19 (today) to April 2.

The former skipper held the view that West Indies should feel at home in the sub-continent because the playing conditions will be pretty similar to that in the Caribbean. “If they play as a team, anything is possible,” he said.

“Same is the case with Pakistan. If they can gel together and the players managed to give their best, they can go all the way,” he added.

Sohail pointed out that in any case, “you have to win just three games on the trot to win the World Cup,” adding that qualifying for the knock-out stage should not be a problem for the top eights teams, therefore, the “real World Cup will begin with the last-eight stage.”

He also took note of the fact that this World Cup is “full of stars, several of them playing in the event for the last time.”

Talking about Indian batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar, who will be playing in his last World Cup, Sohail said that he could inspire the Indians, being a great cricketer and a demigod in his country.

“The Indian team is going to rally around him and will try its best to make it Tendulkar’s World Cup in a bid to give the legend a befitting farewell,” he added.

Australia’s Ricky Ponting, Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan, Pakistan’s Shoaib Akhtar and a few others will also be featuring in it for the last time.For Ricky Ponting, it will be a great sporting achievement, winning four World Cups in a row. The Australians have won the last three Cups and will once again be in contention for the crown,” said Sohail.

“Muralitharan came very close the last time. He’s got nothing to prove but his team-mates have to show the world that they can win the Cup again,” he added. (ANI)

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