INTERVIEW WITH MOIN KHAN, FORMER PAKISTAN'S CRICKET CAPTAIN

KHALIL AHMED
(feedback@pgeconomist.com)
Feb 21 - 27, 20
11

One of the most popular Pakistani wicketkeeper-batsman, Moin Khan, was a member of the Pakistani national cricket team from 1990 to 2004. He has captained the Pakistani side in very difficult circumstances and proved to be an excellent captain as well. He made his international debut against the West Indies at Multan. He took over 100 catches in Test cricket. He has scored over 3,000 ODI runs and taken over 200 catches in ODI cricket.

PAGE: WHICH TEAM IS THE MOST FAVORITE TO WIN THE UPCOMING WORLD CUP?

MOIN KHAN: It would be very difficult to name any team since almost all the teams have the capabilities to make the mark. However, I believe that Pakistan could win since the combination in batting and bowling is excellent and the team is united to achieve this victory.

PAGE: AND WHICH PAKISTANI BATSMAN MAY EXCEL?

MOIN KHAN: It is difficult to say either. However, Ahmed Shehzad seems quite promising. Ahmed Shehzad and Misbah-ul-Haq hit centuries as they steered Pakistan to a morale-boosting 89-run victory over co-host Bangladesh in a World Cup warm-up match. Shehzad hit 103 from 122 balls with a six and nine boundaries, which indicate that he is in very good form. When Pakistan plays their first World Cup Group 'A' match against un-fancied Kenya on Feb 23 in Hambantota, Ahmed Shehzad needs to prove again that he is a good choice. I think Ahmed Shehzad would be successful batsman in the Pakistan side.

PAGE: WHICH INTERNATIONAL BATSMAN MAY EXCEL?

MOIN KHAN: Well, Ricky Ponting, Kumar Sangakkara, Sachin Tendulkar and Watson could do very well. Ricky Ponting has not done well recently but he has got the capability to go on. Once he goes on, it would be very difficult to subdue him. Ricky Thomas Ponting is a specialist right-handed batsman, slips and close catching fielder, as well as a very occasional bowler. He is regarded as one of Australia's finest cricketers in the modern era. He represents the Tasmanian Tigers in Australian domestic cricket and played in the Indian Premier League with the Kolkata Knight Riders in 2008. We all know his capabilities. After being involved in 151 Tests and 352 ODIs, Ponting is Australia's leading run-scorer in Test and ODI cricket, with more than 25,000 international runs as of July 2010. He has scored 39 Test centuries-behind only Indian Sachin Tendulkar (50), and South African Jacques Kallis (40)-and third for most runs in ODIs behind Tendulkar and Sanath Jayasuriya. Ricky Ponting remains the most successful Australian captain of all time with 48 victories in 77 Tests while as a player he has taken part in 99 victories, the most by anyone in history. Sachin Tendulkar could be very difficult to stop incase he goes on. So Ricky Ponting, Kumar Sangakkara, Sachin Tendulkar and Shane Watson would be able to excel in this world cup.

PAGE: HOW IMPORTANT IS FIELDING AND FITNESS OF THE PLAYERS?

MOIN KHAN: It is very important to field well and be fit rather it is the key to success.

PAGE: WHICH PAKISTANI BOWLER WOULD BE AN ASSET DURING THE WORLD CUP?

MOIN KHAN: Well, Shahid Afridi, Saeed Ajmal and Umer Gul could do the best. I think, incase Saeed Ajmal is 100% fit, he would make a lot of damage to the opponents.

PAGE: WHICH INTERNATIONAL BOWLERS WOULD DO THE BEST?

MOIN KHAN: At the moment, I don't see any particular. World doesn't have the best bowlers such as Shane Keith Warne and Muttiah Muralitharan. Shane Keith Warne is widely regarded as one of the greatest bowlers in the history of the game. Warne played his first Test match in 1992, and his 708 wickets was the record for the most wickets taken by any bowler in Test cricket, until it was broken by Sri Lanka's Muttiah Muralitharan on 3 December 2007. He took over 1000 international wickets (in Tests and One-Day Internationals)-he was the second bowler to reach this milestone after Muttiah Muralitharan. He retired from international cricket in January 2007, at the end of Australia's 5-0 Ashes series victory over England.

Muttiah Muralitharan was rated the greatest Test match bowler ever by Wisden Cricketers' Almanack in 2002. He retired from Test cricket in 2010, registering his 800th and final wicket on 22 July 2010 from his final ball in his last test match. Muralitharan is the highest wicket-taker in both Test cricket and in One Day Internationals (ODIs).

PAGE: WHICH TEAMS WOULD BE ABLE TO REACH THE SEMI-FINALS?

MOIN KHAN: I think Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, and Australia.

PAGE: WHICH TEAMS WOULD PLAY FINAL?

MOIN KHAN: Pakistan and India.