T20 World Cup: Pakistan to summon spirit of 2009 for 2021 WC title in UAE, says Shahid Afridi

T20 World Cup: Pakistan to summon spirit of 2009 for 2021 WC title in UAE, says Shahid Afridi

Former captain Shahid Afridi believes Pakistan’s unpredictable cricket can surprise any team in the world and summon the spirit of 2009 to win a second T20 World Cup in UAE.

All eyes of the cricketing fraternity will be on the mega-clash in Dubai as Pakistan will look to register their first World Cup win over India in white-ball cricket. Pakistan has been drawn alongside India, Afghanistan, New Zealand and two qualifiers in Group 2.

“We had that issue of the Sri Lanka attacks on our minds,” Afridi was quoted as saying by AFP.

“The whole nation was disappointed and frustrated, so that win was very much needed. The win gave the whole nation happiness and some unforgettable moments.”

“This is Pakistan cricket for you, never ever a dull day,” added Afridi ruefully.

“Pakistan can surprise any team in the world. Rule them out at your peril. Pakistan gave the best entertainment in the first T20 World Cup,” insists Afridi.

“We lost to India in the group match after a bowl-out, which was something very new for us.”

Pakistan then lost the final with Misbah-ul-Haq falling to an injudicious shot off the third ball of the final over, with just six needed for a win.

“Misbah brought Pakistan into the game but then we lost by the barest of margins,” said Afridi.

Under Afridi, Pakistan then lost in the semifinal of the 2010 edition in the Caribbean when Michael Hussey clobbered 39 runs in the last two overs to give Australia an unlikely win.

“T20 suits our character,” added Afridi. “We have the talent, approach and aggression required for this rapid format.

“It is a format which is loved throughout Pakistan. We won against every team and then every team adopted that style.

“Bowling is now full of variety and new batting techniques have been developed.”

Afridi insisted Pakistan can once again spring a few surprises in the UAE.

“The current Pakistan team is very talented although they lack experienced players. But, as we all know, never under-estimate a Pakistan team!”

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