Younis’ decision to travel separately saved us: Coach

Younis Khan's decision to change the team's travel schedule helped the Pak team to avoid the fate of Lankans.

Written by Agencies | Lahore | Published:March 3, 2009 1:41 pm

The Pakistan cricket team could also have fallen prey to the terror attacks carried out on the Sri Lankan players,but captain Younis Khan’s decision to change the team’s travel schedule came as saviour,coach Intikhab Alam said.

Alam disclosed that normally both the teams leave the hotel together for the stadium at around 8:40 am,but the hosts were saved by skipper Younis’ decision to go separately.

“The Sri Lankans decided to leave five minutes early today and our captain had decided we would go separately,” Alam said.

Six Sri Lankan cricketers were injured when 12 unidentified gunmen opened fire at them,killing five policemen escorting the team convoy to the Gadaffi stadium ahead of the third days play of the second Test.

He said the Pakistani players only came to know about the attack when they reached Mall road and were immediately told to return back to the hotel.

“It was a terrifying incident and we sat down together worried about the Sri Lankan players safety. Later we were able to get in touch with them and their manager,” Alam said.

He said it was a black day in the history of Pakistan cricket,but still insisted that the cricket board should continue its efforts to convince international to visit the country.

“This could have happened anywhere in the world but we need to continue our efforts to convince teams it is safe to come and play in our country,” he said.

PCB,Director of Human Resources,Wasim Bari said he had taken the two injured Sri Lankan cricketers to the hospital for treatment.

“Everyone co-operated a lot and they got prompt medical attention. I was also in touch with the Sri Lankan authorities. We were all concerned,” he said.

Although,Bari,a former Test captain,warned that Pakistan should be prepared for tough times ahead,he urged international teams not to severe cricketing ties with the troubled nation.

“I would appeal to the other cricket playing nations not to abandon us at this moment. It is very easy to say lets not send our teams to Pakistan,but we need support and we must not be isolated as a cricket nation and international venue,” he said.

“Pakistan cricket must be supported we need to move ahead. The easiest thing would be to give in to these terrorists,that is what they want,he added.

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