Islamabad: Former Pakistan skipper Wasim Akram has said that India and Pakistan should be engaged in all kind of sports, which he believes will prepare players to play under pressure with any other team in the world.
Insisting that both the countries should engage in sports at all levels, Akram, who represented his country in 104 Tests and 356 ODIs between 1985 and 2003, said: “We should have regular contests in all sports from the under-16, under-19 levels. India-Pakistan games are pressure games.”
“Once a player knows how to handle the pressure in these matches, he can play against all other teams,” Pak media quoted him as saying.
Meanwhile, Indian Premier League’s (IPL) new commissioner Rajiv Shukla has given a fresh hope to Pakistan, saying that the Pakistani players could be included in the next season.
“Pakistan players are not banned to play the IPL. We have been hiring the services of Pakistan umpires and referees and there is a possibility of their players returning to the IPL. We are keeping our options open,” he added.
Shukla, the senior functionary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), took over the top IPL post last week and said that the issue of recruiting Pakistan players will be discussed in future meetings, adding: “We will consider Pakistan cricketers for the 2012 IPL in our body’s meetings that are held regularly.”
Several Pakistan players had been part of the IPL in its initial stages, but were barred after the relations between governments of both the countries soured following the Mumbai attack in 2008.