Kimberley: Celebrated Pakistan all-rounder Wasim Akram became the most capped World Cup player when he went out for his 34th match against Namibia on Sunday.
The 36-year-old, playing his fifth World Cup, surpassed former team-mate Javed Miandad and Australia's Steve Waugh's record of 33 appearances in the four-yearly tournament. "A World Cup is the main event in any sport so I am delighted at this record," said the left-arm seamer.
"I would have liked it to come against a tougher opponent than Namibia, but anyway it is a big honour." Wasim is One-day cricket's most successful bowler with 493 wickets. He also has 414 Test wickets, the only bowler to surpass the 400 mark in both forms of the game. The Namibia game is Wasim's 352nd match, more than anyone else in history.
"This is my fifth and last World Cup so I want to make it memorable for my country and for myself," said Wasim, whose World Cup tally of 46 wickets is also a record. "This is the most open tournament where every team will win some and lose some, so our loss to Australia was one of those things." Wasim said Pakistan's crucial matches will be against England and India. "If we win both we will be in the super six round," he said. Pakistan meets England in Cape Town on February 22 and arch rivals India at Centurion on March 1.