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Talk less, Akram tells Akhtar

Onkar Singh | October 20, 2003 20:05 IST

Former Pakistan cricket captain Wasim Akram, who makes his debut as cricket commentator with ESPN in Dhaka on Tuesday, has advised former team mate Sohaib Akhtar to stop blowing his own trumpet and instead let his bowling do the talking.

Addressing a press conference in Delhi before flying to Bangladesh, Akram said Akhtar should mellow down a bit.

"My advice to him is that he should talk less and let the ball do the talking. It is better to let your performance speak for you rather than say few words here or there," said Akram.

A diabetic, the highest wicket-taker in Limited Over Internationals (502 wickets) said the ailment was never allowed to affect his performance.

He named Sir Vivian Richards as the second greatest batsman ever.

"Right from the manner in which he strode up to the wicket to the way he played, it was a complete package. I think he was the second greatest batsman to have graced the game. It was a pleasure to bowl against him," he added.

Akram appealed to both India and Pakistan to keep politics away from the game. "People of both countries want to see India and Pakistan play," he said.

He blamed the frequent changes in captaincy for the Pakistan's mediocre showing in recent times.

"In last ten years we have had 11 captains. I was in and out as captain at least five times. This is not good for cricket. The Pakistan Cricket Board should give enough time to the captain to show results. Right now they have appointed Inzamam [ul Haq] as captain for two years and this is good," he added.

Asked about the Indian team, he said it has been going from strength to strength and singled out Zaheer Khan and Yuvraj Singh for special mention, adding "the fielding of the Indian side has improved tremendously".

Asked why he decided to do commentary, Akram replied that he had to choose some vocation after retiring. "Being a cricket commentator not only fills up the gap money-wise but also keeps you in touch with the game," he said.

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