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Pakistan can win Champions Trophy without me: Inzamam
by AFP


Player:Inzamam-ul-Haq, Younis Khan, Mushtaq Ahmed
Event:ICC Champions Trophy 2006/07

DateLine: 9th October 2006

 

Banned Pakistan cricket captain Inzamam-ul Haq on Monday said the side was capable of winning the Champions Trophy in India without him under stand-in skipper Younis Khan.

 

"This team is capable of playing the final and if they can reach the final without me they can also win it," Inzamam told reporters after meeting newly appointed Pakistan cricket chief Nasim Ashraf.

 

Inzamam, who was appointed captain until Pakistan's home series against the West Indies starting next month, also reacted to reports he might not return as captain and his replacement Younis might continue after the Trophy.

 

"Captaincy doesn't bother me, it's not an issue at the moment. The main thing is that the team does well in the Champions Trophy," he said.

 

Pakistan had to replace Inzamam after he was banned for four one-day matches by a disciplinary hearing of the International Cricket Council in London last month.

 

The hearing followed Pakistan's team protest at the Oval Test against England in August when they refused to take field after umpires Darrell Hair and Billy Doctrove accused them of ball-tampering.

 

Inzamam was acquitted of the tampering charge but was handed a four-match ban for bringing the game into disrepute by protesting.

 

His replacement Younis initially refused to lead the side, saying he did not want to be a "dummy" captain.

 

His decision caused chaos and Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Shaharyar Khan resigned. The newly inducted chairman Ashraf reinstated Younis on Saturday, hours before team's departure for India to feature in the Champions Trophy.

 

The Pakistan camp had been hoping that Inzamam could return to lead the side in the final if the team were successful in four earlier matches.

 

But, according to the Participating Nation's Agreement (PNA) enforced in the Trophy, even after completing his four-match ban, Inzamam will not feature in the tournament as once a player is replaced he cannot be later reinstated.

 

Inzamam was replaced by Faisal Iqbal. If Pakistan suffer any injury problems they can only draft a player from a provisional squad of 30 players.

 

In the latest turmoil to effect Pakistan's cricketing set-up, the newly appointed PCB chairman announced earlier Monday that Mushtaq Ahmed was being sacked as assistant coach for the Trophy.

 

"The situation regarding Mushtaq was not clear, it was tough on him," said Inzamam after the PCB chairman announced that the veteran spinner would not be required for the short tour.

(Article: Copyright © 2006 AFP)



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