I am honoured and will do my best, says elated Akram

Published: Wednesday, January 1, 2003, 0:04 [IST]
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Lahore: Pakistan's celebrated pacer Wasim Akram said on Tuesday he was 'honoured' after being named in Pakistan's World Cup squad for the fifth time. Wasim, 36, said he hoped to help Pakistan return to the form which won them the 1992 title earned them the runners-up spot at the last World Cup. Seasoned opener Saeed Anwar was also named in the 15-man squad for the tournament in southern Africa, which starts in February.

"I am honoured and will do my best to lead Pakistan to Cup glory and make it a memorable swan song," Wasim said. Sri Lanka's Aravinda de Silva will also be playing in his fifth World Cup. The record for the most appearances belongs to former Pakistan star Javed Miandad, who played in the first seven tournaments after the event began in England in 1975. Wasim warned doubters not to write Pakistan off despite its recent slump in form.

"I have a feeling that Pakistan will achieve the best results and it's a balanced and experienced squad," he said. "Let the World Cup come and every team will look different and Pakistan's track record in the World Cup is good," he added. But he said Pakistan's campaign hinged on its batsmen. "Pakistan has the best bowling attack and it boils down to batting and I hope batsmen will regroup in the World Cup."

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