Stories about world cup

Four Pakistani cricket legends who left behind some big shoes to fill

One cannot recount Pakistan’s rich cricketing history without giving adequate importance to the players who made their mark and kept the green flag flying high. Taking into account the fact that some of its finest players of the past decade or so recently put the curtain down on their careers, it is apt to shed some light on what made them such great contributors to Pakistan cricket. Be it the aggression of Shahid Afridi, the flamboyance of Abdul Razzaq, or the stability and permanence provided by the stalwarts in the shape of Younis Khan and Misbahul Haq, Pakistan cricket was truly blessed to have such impact players at its disposal. [caption id="" align="alignnone" ...

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Is it a mistake to increase the number of teams from 32 to 48 in the 2026 FIFA World Cup?

Fourty-eight teams. Now that would be a long list of participating countries to remember. I, for one, wouldn’t make it past 15, 20 tops. But fourty-eight!? You have got to be kidding me. The Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) decided to expand the leading global tournament to a whopping 48 countries from the current perfectly reasonable number of 32 teams, starting from the 2026 FIFA World Cup. The sport’s world governing body, in a landmark unanimous vote, chose to increase the countries at a meeting held in Zurich on Tuesday. Current FIFA president, Gianni Infantino, has been the driving ...

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Azhar Ali: A captain in deep waters

After a humdinger of a Test match series that consisted of wild swings in favour of either sides; Pakistan have been brutally crushed under the resilience and sheer willpower of the English team in the One Day format. After a humdinger of a Test match series that consisted of wild swings in favours of either sides. Photo: Reuters It would not be a belittling statement to say that it wasn’t deserved, but the manner in which the team has metamorphosed from a warrior mentality unit to one that needs help psychologically – is quite bemusing. Our team ...

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I want a Liverpool versus Liverpool UEFA Euro 2016 final

FIFA World Cup..  Nah! UEFA Euro.. Meh!! Copa America.. Not a chance!!! Africa Cup of Nations.. Are you frikkin kidding me??? We are a strange lot, we club football fans. Even while there’s a major international football tournament going on, someone like me is more interested in something as insignificant to an outsider as, well, Liverpool (LFC)’s pre-season training.

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That in no way should mean that I am not fully aware of what is going in any of the aforementioned ‘country versus country’ tourney, but putting it mildly let’s just say… ‘Frankly my dear I don’t give a damn!’ That is unless one of my ...

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Removing Azhar Ali from the cricket team will result in a long-term loss

An out of favour batsman, who had remained in the shadows for long and was deemed surplus to requirement in the shorter formats, was, out of the blue, asked to lead a side. Not any ordinary side, but a side that was plagued with groups, seniority-‘juniority’ prejudices and a quota system that has seeped into our roots. The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) gambled on Misbahul Haq when they not only brought him back into the Test side, but to the shock of many, made him captain. The gamble succeeded and Misbah went on to become the most successful captain in ...

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It’s down to India, West Indies and England, who are you betting on?

Amidst the pandemonium of leaked reports, press conferences, media bashing and, most importantly, Kulbhushan Yadav, the World T20 tournament in India is quietly and swiftly moving towards its conclusion. Not many Pakistanis tune into sports channels these days considering D-Chowk and Numaish Chowrangi are more entertaining. But ardent fans find their way to their TV sets to watch cricket being played in its truest form at the T20 World Cup. No adrenaline rush is equivalent to the thrill of watching cricket. A few days ago, I was quite disturbed after Pakistan crashed out of the match against Australia. My disturbance further transformed into diarrhoea while watching ...

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The era of Shahid Afridi comes to an end

How do you define Shahid Afridi? Do we talk about the man who when he bats, brings an entire nation to a standstill? Do we talk about the man who when swings at the cricket ball, a whole nation holds its breath while waiting for the ball to sail over the boundary line? Do we talk about the man who with his trademark star man pose instils hope into a nation? Do we talk about the man who has one of the highest numbers of ducks in international cricket? Do we talk about the man who ...

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Will Pakistan be able raise the T20 World Cup?

Cricket has come a long way since 2003, when the T20 cricket concept was first introduced. In 2007, the ICC T20 World Cup was first introduced along with 16 teams – from across the world – participating to win a prestigious trophy. Unlike Test matches, which can last up to five days, T20 matches are typically completed within six hours. The fast pace of the game, shared with the short duration, results in an extremely active crowd. When the date for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2016 was announced, March 15, 2016, cricket fans worldwide began to prepare themselves to support their favourite teams. [caption ...

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Five players who lit up Pakistan’s U19 World Cup and could be our future hope!

The Under 19 World Cup (U19) held in Bangladesh yielded positive and negative results for Pakistan. An impressive run was cut short as a motivated Pakistan team led by Gauhar Hafeez, lost to West Indies and crashed out of the tournament. While the end result was indeed a disappointment, the road towards the semis produced magical moments and introduced the cricketing world to the following future stars of Pakistan cricket. 1. Zeeshan Malik The Chakwal based batsman gave dominant performances with the bat to finish his tournament with 132 runs from four matches including an impressive unbeaten 89 against Canada. Zeeshan Malik possesses the skills and potential. ...

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Move over Ronaldo; Let Messi, the real champ, reign the field

If someone had said superstar Lionel Messi would be crowned ‘FIFA World Player of the Year’ in 2016 for a record fifth time, I’m pretty sure everyone would have considered that person as deluded. Why though? Simply because the Argentinian maestro was nowhere near the form which won him four successive ‘World Player of the Year’ awards from 2009 to 2012. Photo: AFP In fact, he had just endured the terrible ordeal of losing a World Cup final to Germany, a feat which has not only tested his physical strength but his mental endurance as well. The entire topic of discussion ahead of ...

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