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Mushtaq apologises for World Cup debacle

Published: Thursday, April 5, 2007, 23:53 [IST]
 
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Lahore:Pakistan cricket team's assistant coach Mushtaq Ahmad has apologised to the entire nation for the team's shocking first round exit from the World Cup in the West Indies.

''There is no excuse for the poor performance which has really disappointed the nation and I can only apologise to the public for that,'' Mushtaq was quoted by the Dawn as saying.

The former leg-spinner, however, claimed that the team entered the mega event with complete preparation and planning but eventually failed to deliver when it mattered.

Criticising the security arrangements set up in the Caribbean during the World Cup, Mushtaq said, ''They were not up to the mark.

The security arrangements for the foreign teams in Pakistan are a lot better than what I saw in the West Indies.'' Appearing before the three-member performance evaluation committee yesterday, he also denied match-fixing allegations, that cropped up after coach Bob Woolmer's murder in the team hotel in Jamaica, saying that there was no truth in the charges whatsoever.

Mushi becomes first to face the music: Mushtaq became the first official of the World Cup squad to be questioned by the three-member performance evaluation committee set up by the PCB in the aftermath of the team's shocking first round ouster from the tournament.

According to the Dawn, the committee, headed by former Test cricketer Ijaz Butt including cricketers Saleem Altaf and Salahuddin Sallu as members, yesterday held an hour-long formal session with Mushtaq at the board's headquarters in Lahore, during which he was posed with several questions related to the team's poor show in the Caribbean.

Later, issuing an official statement, the PCB stated that the former leg-spinner himself had made a request to call him first for questioning as he was supposed to leave for England in a couple of days.

Meanwhile after Mushtaq, Pakistan's outgoing skipper Inzamam-ul-Haq and a few other members of the squad are in line to appear before the committee today.

UNI

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