Pakistan cricket has missed its opportunities: Rameez Raja

December 16th, 2008 - 5:57 pm ICT by ANI  

Lahore, Dec.16 (ANI): Former Pakistan cricket captain and opener Rameez Raja is of the view that the team has failed to capitalize on the achievements of its predecessors in the 1980s and early 1990s, and has repeatedly lost opportunities to establish itself as competitive side in the sport.
In article for The News, Raja says: It is time for Pakistan cricket to wake up and smell the coffee. If India and the rest of the world are to be engaged on equal terms as partners, and not as masters, the PCB will have to get its priorities right.
To earn respect, it has to develop a strong cricket team, an independent cricket mind, and a tough presence at the ICC. It must look inwardly to create a domestic revenue stream that it can have control over, he added.
On the state of cricket relations between Pakistan and India, Raja said: Right now, India-Pakistan cricket is caught in a whirlwind of emotions and politics. For cricket between the two countries to resume, there has to be time and space. Let the clouds of mistrust lift and the dust settle before we broach the subject of cricket, indirectly suggesting that next months tour to Pakistan by an Indian team should not take place.
In this tug of war of opinions and emotions, there are sections of society on both sides that are pulling against cricket diplomacy in favour of a show of antagonism toward each other. The other side is keen to give cricket a chance to break the stalemate of hate and promote the live-and-let-live theme, claims raja.
Conditions are in such a state of flux that it is difficult to commit too deeply in this affair, he says, adding that the PCB should not be bending backwards to lure them into a contest, even at a neutral venue.
Raja says: I guess the prospect of a cash stimulus has got Pakistan thinking excitedly. Agreed, an Indian series is too lucrative to pass over, but is making overtures and running after India with a begging bowl the way to conduct cricket business? Doesnt the PCB get the message that India is not yet emotionally ready to play Pakistan? (ANI)

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