Pak President, PM congratulate team for beating Australia

Karachi: President Asif Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gillani on Saturday led the country in celebrating Pakistan`s thrilling three-wicket win over Australia in the second Test at Leeds, England, a rare feat achieved for the first time in 15 years.

Zardari, in a statement, congratulated captain Salman Butt and coach Waqar Younis for the victory and hoped the winning streak would continue.

"It is a moment of great pride for the nation on winning this test. I hope the players continue to play with the same spirit," Zardari, who is also chief patron of the PCB, said.

Congratulating the players, Gillani pointed out that the victory had brought great joy for the nation.

"It is a great victory and it comes after a long time over Australia. The national team has given the nation a lot to celebrate," the premier said.

Former captain Imran Khan said he was happy that the new look team under a new captain had fought tooth and nail in the Test.

"It is great to see such a fighting performance which was the hallmark of past teams," Imran said from London.

He said by beating Australia, the team had broken a jinx and would now be confident against England in the coming Test series.

"I think the captain handled the pressure well and the bowlers did a magnificent job on the first day. But more importantly the batsmen held their nerves in testing conditions. It is a great victory and good for Pakistan cricket," said Imran.

Pakistan Cricket Board Chairman Ijaz Butt also announced cash awards of half a million rupees each to the members of the winning eleven and 250,000 rupees for the non playing members of the squad.

Butt said the young team had performed remarkably well and hoped it would continue to build on its success in the remaining tests on the tour.

Salman Butt became the eight Pakistani captain to have won a Test in his first outing.



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