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Home > Cricket > World Cup 2003 > News > Report

One of my worst defeats: Waqar

Faisal Shariff in Cape Town | February 23, 2003 04:52 IST

"It is one of my worst defeats," said a beleaguered Waqar Younis minutes after England humiliated Pakistan by 112 runs at the picturesque Newlands ground in Cape Town.

But Pakistan can reach the Super Sixes by winning the next three games, he said. "In 1992 we lost the opening three games and pulled back to win the Cup. We can do it again," he said after walking into the press conference munching on a toasted sandwich.

At the press conference a journalist asked him if he could provide the kind of leadership that Imran Khan did in 1992.

"I don't know. I was not there for that world cup but I can tell you one thing, I am going to give it my best shot," he said.

At the pre-match press conference on Friday, Waqar had mentioned that the toss will be crucial and the side that bowls better will win.

Today, England won the toss and decided to bat, which was what their coach Duncan Fletcher wanted. As coach of Western Province, Fletcher had led his team to thirteen consecutive wins.

England, after stuttering to 118-5 midway, reached a defendable total of 246. James Anderson, 20, then bowled brilliantly to single-handedly win the match for England.

England skipper Nasser Hussain credited coach Fletcher for the homework done on the Pakistani batsmen and revealed that the dismissal of Yousuf Youhana was planned.

"Youhana shuffles a lot at the crease and Fletcher had pointed out that an early yorker could do the trick," he said.

In a lighter vein, he said they had also planned to get Inzamam-ul-Haq and Youhana dismissed for noughts.

"I kept what the coach said at the back of my mind about picking early wickets by bowling yorkers," man of the match Anderson said.

For England, Anderson has been the find of the tournament. After a blistering spell against Holland, Anderson bowled beautifully to the Pakistanis.

He was a little overawed by the early successes. "I can't take all in. It is just so quick, I keep pinching myself," he joked.

Fletcher had mentioned that for the past few months Anderson was busy due to the obligations at the academy and the tours that followed.

"He is a young kid. We've got to be careful with him and provide him with good direction," said the coach.

Anderson said he didn't think he would ever get tired tonight. The adrenaline was flowing and that was all that he required.

"When we played here against the South Africans there was no swing and today the ball was swinging like anything. I think the England bowlers bowled very well," Younis said.

That none of the batsmen went on to make a hundred was a negative, Hussain said, adding Paul Collingwood's consistent form was good news.

He said that the lap of honour around the ground was to thank the English fans who made the team feel like it was a home game.

"It was a great effort by the fans to have come here all the way with flags and banners all over the place."

He also said that Michael Vaughan's absence from the field when England bowled was because his calf was twitching.

"Vaughan felt his calf and since he has a history of injuries and a history of getting runs we want to keep both apart."

And Inzamam, who has avoided batting in the nets to 'starve for runs' in real games, will need to go back and get some practice for the all-important game against India on March 1.

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