Shahid Afridi © Getty Images
Shahid Afridi © Getty Images

Karachi: Sep 18, 2014

Veteran Pakistan all-rounder Shahid Afridi urged his team-mates to back one another if they were to win the ICC World Cup 2015 in Australia and New Zealand and end the country’s 23-year long wait for the coveted trophy for the second time. Afridi, who has been re-appointed the T20 captain, said he was 12 when Pakistan were last crowned World Champions in 1992.

“I can vividly remember that it was the holy month of Ramazan and the entire nation was behind the team. People were praying for Pakistan’s success while offering their daily prayers,” Afridi was quoted as saying by The Dawn. Afridi was speaking on the sidelines of a World Cup Trophy tour ceremony at Karachi’s National Stadium on Wednesday.

“The forthcoming World Cup could be my last in the 50-over format. We need to back each other because it is not the trophy that matters but we want to make our countrymen happy once again after so many disappointments,” he said. Former captain and coach Intikhab Alam, manager of the World Cup winning 1992 team and at present Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) director of domestic cricket, said the never-say-die attitude contributed to Pakistan’s grand victory.

“We never let ourselves down even after we mustered three points after five matches. I can recall that every time we got together for team meetings, I always stressed on the team not giving up. This was my philosophy of achieving success in life,” the former Pakistan skipper said at the ceremony. A spectacular display of fireworks took place after the trophy was unveiled following its arrival from Lahore where it reached Karachi Tuesday after visits to Sri Lanka, India, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.