Captaincy chaos won~~t affect Pakistan, assures Yousuf

Published: Friday, October 6, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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Lahore:New Pakistan captain Mohammad Yousuf has vowed that his side's chances in the upcoming Champions Trophy will not be affected by Younis Khan's controversial refusal to lead the team.

Younis shocked Pakistan on Thursday when he suddenly stepped down as stand-in skipper for the banned Inzamam-ul-Haq, saying that he did not want to be a "dummy captain".

"The team is united and Younis's stepping down will not harm our chances in the Champions Trophy," Yousuf told reporters on Friday.

He promised Pakistan, who won the world cup in 1992, would be competitive in the tournament, for which Pakistan fly to India on Saturday.

"We have a balanced side and know what challenge lies ahead in the Trophy and we will be equal to it," Yousuf said.

The Pakistan Cricket Board appointed Yousuf as captain late Thursday, hours after Younis turned down the job.

Younis was named only last week to replace Inzamam, who received a ban of four one-day internationals for leading his team's refusal to play in the Fourth Test against England at The Oval in August.

However the International Cricket Council (ICC) cleared Inzamam of ball tampering, the charge initially levelled by umpires Darrell Hair and Billy Doctrove that led to Pakistan's protest.

The stylish 32-year-old batsman Yousuf has led Pakistan in four one-day matches, winning and losing two each, while his three Tests as captain ended in one win and two defeats.

He converted from Christianity to Islam last year and changed his name from Yousuf Youhana. He attributes his recent blistering form for Pakistan to the switch.

Pakistan open the Trophy with a match against a qualifier team in Jaipur on October 17 before taking on New Zealand (October 25) and South Africa (October 27), both at Mohali.


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