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Imran meets Irfan at last!

Last updated on: April 01, 2004 11:43 IST

The Khans finally met on Wednesday evening after the fourth day's play in the Multan Test.

Imran Khan met Irfan Pathan for 15 minutes at the team hotel and spoke about the importance of gym work and sprinting to build up his body power.

Khan stressed on Pathan's wrist position and his landing. 'Don't change anything,' he told Irfan.

"Just be yourself," cricket's Original Pathan told the game's Newest Pathan.

Imran Khan earlier mentioned he sees a young Wasim Akram in the way Pathan bowls.  

Now that is one compliment Pathan won't stop smiling about.

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Looks like skipper Sourav Ganguly will be racing against time to be fit for the third Test.

Indian team physio Andrew Leipus said he asked Ganguly to skip the second Test because the captain has not responded to treatment.

"I am worried about him and think it makes sense he see a specialist before he starts playing again. It could not be serious at all. He might just get a couple of injections and join the team again," Leipus said. 

Radiologist Dr Azhar Turap of the Shaukat Khanam Diagnostic Center where Ganguly had an MRI done feels Sourav could be out of cricket for anywhere between two and six weeks.

Dr Turap said Ganguly was very lucky he escaped with a small injury; the injury could have been a lot worse. 

The MRI shows a muscle strain because the entire body weight was on the spinal cord. He said Ganguly was not getting younger and that was the reason for the loss of fluid from his disc.

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Moin Khan is one happy go lucky bloke.

Minutes after ICC Match Referee Ranjan Madugalle fined him 75 percent of his match fee for showing dissent to the umpire, Moin was chatting around in the team hotel lobby.

He asked Indian team manager Professor Ratnakar Shetty if he was being taken care of in Pakistan.

"Aapke Bombay to aane hi nahi dete hame Balasaheb (Bal Thackeray). Badi khwaish hai Bambai aane ki (Balasaheb does not allow us to come to Mumbai. I have desired to come to Bombay for a long time)," he said.

Interestingly, Moin played a match at the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai when he traveled to India with the Under-19 team playing against the likes of Anil Kumble and Ajay Jadeja.

"I have a century on that ground," he told us.

During that game, Moin confessed the young Pakistani players would spend most of the day at Yankee Doodle, the ice-cream parlour then on Marine Drive.

"Wahan ladkiyan aati thi aas paas ke colleges se. Unhe dekhne bait the rehte the. (We would sit there to look at the girls from the colleges around)," he added

Moin said he was receiving SMS messages from his friends about the nature of the wicket and cursing the curator at the Multan ground.

He was overheard telling Professor Shetty that the game needs aggression and that the current rules have tied down players.

"Phir paise kaat liye yaar (they have cut my money again)," he joked.

Moin was equally happy talking about Sachin Tendulkar. When Moin was batting in the first innings, he told Sachin he would square cut him.

Minutes later, Moin was walking back, bowled by an amazing Sachin googly.

"Sachin is a great guy. I have known him a long time having played each other so much. Even today when I came out to bat he told me, 'Aao kya bowling karne?' (Should I come to bowl?)"

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The gentle giant from Multan has a heart as huge as his batting.

On Wednesday evening, on the verge of a Test defeat, the Pakistan captain was busy arranging gifts for the Indian team.

Inzamam-ul Haq informed the Indians he had brought some gifts for them and would like to present it to them after the match.

Now we know why Inzamam is one of the nicest guys on the circuit.

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There is something about Mumbai boys. Even while the Multan Test was interestingly poised Sachin Tendulkar, Ajit Agarkar and Ramesh Powar were keenly following the other big game: The Ranji Trophy final between Mumbai and Tamil Nadu in Chennai, which Mumbai won.

Sachin was particularly excited about Mumbai's 35th Ranji victory and said the boys, who had worked really hard, should party till the new season begins.

Agarkar was happy for Vinayak Mane who scored three hundreds this season and would be a leading contender for national colours.

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Umpire Simon Taufel on the fourth evening: Will the teams be offended if we don't wear our sunburn cream tomorrow?

Faisal Shariff