Pakistan seeking redemption
Pakistan coach Geoff Lawson believes the country can redeem their reputation at September's inaugural ICC World Twenty20 tournament.
By Phil Jackson
Last Updated: 30/08/07 12:54pm
Geoff Lawson believes Pakistan can redeem themselves at September's inaugural ICC World Twenty20 tournament.
The new coach replaced Bob Woolmer at the helm after the country's disastrous World Cup campaign in the Caribbean earlier this year.
Pakistan eliminated from the tournament following a defeat to minnows Ireland, with Woolmer dying of a heart attack the very next day.
Pacemen Shoaib Akhtar and Mohammad Asif are now in the clear following their failed drug tests last year, and the new coach is keen to utilise their attacking talents in the shortest form of the game.
"Shoaib Akhtar, Mohammad Asif and Umar Gul are simultaneously fit and available for the first time since they came together," Lawson told AFP.
"Despite the popular perception that the format is skewed heavily in favour of batsmen, pace might make a difference.
"We have some explosive players but I think everyone understands that luck will play some part in Twenty20. Everyone wants to win and to do so, any side will need an element of luck."
Shoaib Malik will lead the side into their four-nation warm-up tournament against Kenya, Bangladesh and Uganda, before heading to South Africa and Lawson knows practice can only take his team so far.
"We can prepare strategies, try and find the right balances, work out plans and play any number of practice games but that can only take you so far," Lawson said.
"Until the first match happens, we won't really know what to expect."
Pakistan begin their Twenty20 campaign against Scotland on September 12, before a mouth-watering tie against arch-rivals India two days later.