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Pak`s Leeds Test win reopened Intikhab`s Sydney wounds

Karachi: Former Pakistan coach Intikhab Alam has admitted that wounds of the shock defeat to Australia at Sydney earlier this year were reopened after national team`s thrilling three-wicket win over Ricky Ponting`s men in the Leeds Test last week.

"The Sydney Test is still like a nightmare for me and when Pakistan won the Leeds test, I was compelled to recall how we missed a golden opportunity to beat the Australians at Sydney," Intikhab said.

Intikhab lost his job as national team coach after the disastrous Australian tour early this year where Pakistan was whitewashed in the Tests and One-day series.

But in the second Test in Sydney, Pakistan after bowling out Australia for 127 runs, were set a winning target of 175 runs on the final day but they lost by 36 runs in good batting conditions.

Intikhab said that despite below par wicket-keeping and fielding, Pakistan should have won the Test.

"If in that Test, some of our batsmen had shown the same sense of responsibility that was shown at Leeds, we would have beaten Australia and who knows how the series would have shaped in the end," the former captain said.

Intikhab also expressed surprise over the decision of Australian skipper Ricky Ponting to bat first after winning the toss at Leeds.

"All cricketers and coaches know how difficult it is always to bat first at Leeds. When the Australian captain decided to bat first it came as a big shock to me, it was a wrong decision and it backfired badly on the Australians. Perhaps overconfidence clouded the judgment of an experienced player like Pointing," he said.

Intikhab credited the Leeds Test win to the bowlers and good captaincy of Salman Butt.

"I thought our bowlers were magnificent. But Salman led the side very intelligently and I think the board should give him an extended captaincy run."

PTI

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