Former Pakistan off-spinner Saqlain Mushtaq has revealed that he had locked up his wife in a cupboard the night before the final against Australia in the 1999 World Cup in England to avoid disciplinary action.
Narrating the incident,Saqlain recalled that he had to hide his wife Sana in the closet as the team management had instructed all players to send back their wives and children after the team qualified for the super sixes stage of the World Cup.
“I had just got married to Sana who is a British citizen and she was with me in the initial part of the tournament, he recalled. But in the Super-Sixes stage the management told us we needed to just focus on the cricket. Since I wanted to be close to her I gave her a list of the hotels where the team was to stay and she used to check in before our arrival at every hotel,” Saqlain recalled.
He said the night before the final while he was chatting with his wife in his room,team manager Dr Zafar Altaf and associate manager Masood Chisty knocked at the door to check if all the players were adhering to the curfew timings.
“Since I did not want to face any disciplinary action I told my wife to hide in the cupboard and locked the door from outside. Unfortunately her wait to come out become a long one, the off-spinner said.
“After the manager left,team coach Richard Pybus came to my room for a chat and after he left Muhammad Yousuf and Azhar Mehmood walked in. I felt sorry for my wife and was forced to ask her to come out of the cupboard leaving the players surprised. Good for me that they didnt tell anyone,” Saqlain said.