Asian team will win World Cup: Ramiz RajaMarch 13th, 2011 - 4:26 pm ICT by IANS
Karachi, March 13 (IANS) Former Pakistan cricket captain Ramiz Raja has predicted that an Asian team will win the 2011 World Cup.
“There was a time when Asian teams didn’t have the sort of quality that was needed to go all the way, especially in a major event like the World Cup. There was also a time when they couldn’t really cope with pressure,” Ramiz told Life Illustrated.
“But now, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka do not lack in those areas. Even Bangladesh are an improved lot.
“Their rankings tell the story. India are the top-ranked team while Sri Lanka are at number two. Pakistan, too, are steadily improving.”
Bangladesh have dethroned the West Indies for the number eight spot. The momentum has certainly swung towards Asia.
“But the main thing is that the Asian teams have the home advantage. They will have a ball on their favourite hunting grounds in the knockout stages.”
India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka are almost sure of reaching the quarterfinals while Bangladesh have also catapulted itself into serious contention for a last-eight berth after beating England in Chittagong earlier this week.
Ramiz is expecting Pakistan to do well but has advised the team to get its act together. He believes Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi remains the team’s key player.
“For Pakistan Shahid Afridi is the key player. As a captain he has to motivate the players. World Cup is a great test for any team because you are bound to lose a few matches. It’s up to the captain how he keeps his players focused.”
Pakistan is generally regarded as an unpredictable bunch but Ramiz views it as their strength.
“I’ve felt it time and again that teams including the top ones are generally scared of Pakistan. They are afraid of Pakistan’s potential and their unpredictability. Pakistan should capitalise on this factor. It could be their strength.”
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- PCB most likely to retain Afridi as Pak captain for World Cup 2011 - Feb 01, 2011
- Afridi warns World Cup teams not to underestimate "hungry" Pak in tournament - Feb 12, 2011
- Pakistan looking to blood youngsters in T20 team - Jul 18, 2011
- Sachin, Yuvraj, Zaheer selected in Team of the Tournament - Apr 03, 2011
- Afridi urges senior Pak players to deliver in World Cup 2011 - Feb 20, 2011
- Dilshan, Tendulkar and Gambhir all rise in ICC rankings - Apr 04, 2011
- Pakistan elect to bat against Sri Lanka - Feb 26, 2011
- Unity is our strength: Afridi - Mar 03, 2011
- Afridi to captain at World Cup - Feb 04, 2011
- Afridi wants to win World Cup for 'cricket-starved' Pak fans - Feb 23, 2011
- Afridi backs 'cohesive and contributing' Pak squad to bag World Cup glory - Feb 09, 2011
- Shahid Afridi retained as Pak captain for ICC World Cup: Intikhab Alam - Feb 04, 2011
Tags: asian team, asian teams, berth, chittagong, contention, cricket captain, home advantage, hunting grounds, india pakistan, karachi, knockout stages, number eight, pakistan captain, pakistan cricket, quarterfinals, ramiz raja, ranked team, shahid afridi, unpredictability, west indies