Pakistan of the 90s - One of the best teams ever

Shoaib Akhtar
The Pakistan team of the 1990s was a treat to watch

The Pakistani cricket team of the 90s was easily one of the best teams ever. With excruciatingly fast bowlers, a world-class spinner, two hard-hitting all-rounders and batsmen with a voracious appetite for runs, few teams had the balance that the Pakistan of the 90s had.

Being an Indian cricket fan while growing up, I always wondered why didn't India have the kind of expertise that Pakistan did, for we were nations hardly a few kilometres apart. With the Kargil war and politically tensed atmospheres creating tension between the two countries, I was almost embarrassed to admit to anyone how much I loved the Pakistani team, and how I supported them when they played other nations.

Saeed Anwar was like a run-machine who never wanted to get out. Shahid Afridi, the new kid on the block, stunned the world by scoring 100* of 37 and was the best hitter of the era.

Ijaz Ahmed played classical shots and stabilized the batting at 3. Aamir Sohail and Inzamam-ul-Haq were the backbones of the batting. Abdur Razzaq and Azhar Mahmood were the hard-hitting, pace bowling all-rounders.

Moin Khan was one of the best wicketkeeper-batsmen to have played the sport and was also street-smart. Few Fast bowling trios have been as destructive as Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis and Shoaib Akhtar. Complimenting the deadly fast bowling trio was the world's number one off-spinner then, Saqlain Mushtaq.

Here's the playing eleven of one of my favourite teams of the era, a team that could abolish any opposition on its day.

  1. Saeed Anwar
  2. Shahid Afridi
  3. Ijaz Ahmed
  4. Aamir Sohail
  5. Inzamam ul Haq
  6. Abdur Razzaq
  7. Moin Khan (w)
  8. Wasim Akram (c)
  9. Saqlain Mushtaq
  10. Waqar Younis
  11. Shoaib Akhtar

These were the golden days of Pakistan cricket - from the 1992 World Cup until the 2003 World Cup - a period during which they played some great cricket, won many games, at home, away and Sharjah!

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Edited by Naveen K
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