Zia attributes defeat to lack of spirit and motivation

Published: Saturday, April 24, 2004, 20:09 [IST]
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Islamabad:Former Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Gen (Retd) Tauqir Zia strongly refuted the perception that the recent India-Pakistan cricket series was fixed and said the host lost due to lack of team spirit and motivation.

"It is rubbish to say that the matches of the One-day and Test series were fixed. I do not see any such element involved in the defeat of our team," he told newsmen on the sidelines of a book launching ceremony on One-day cricket written by cricket writer Khawaja Muhammad Aslam.

Zia attributed the defeats to lack of spirit and motivation among the team members and said the players failed to rise to the occasion.

The former PCB chief said unity among the team members was very important to create the necessary confidence as disunity always brought destructive results.

"PCB must look in this important aspect and efforts should be made to sink differences and petty issues among the players and with the creation of unity spirit will automatically develop in the players," he was quoted as saying by the official APP news agency.

Zia also emphasised that negative criticism of the team must be stopped and it should be encouraged to perform well in the coming events.

"Losing to India does not mean end of cricket, PCB authorities should sit together and grey areas of the team should be handled professionally."

Zia said the Pakistan team was not an inferior side when compared to India but players were not guided properly to handle pressure situations.

"We have a bunch of young players and if groomed and given proper opportunity they can prove asset," he said, adding "they must be taught discipline and unity so that they could blend in a winning combination".

He was, however, critical of chief executive officer Ramiz Raja's decision to double up as a commentator during the tour and the former cricketer should have devoted time with the team to lift its morale and spirit instead of taking the assignment.

"It was not wise to continue with this assignment during this series and I must say that he (Ramiz) should have taken all the measures in consideration to motivate the team to a level where it could perform upto the expectations."

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