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Afghanistan capable of stunning Pakistan: Latif

Afghanistan capable of stunning Pakistan: Latif

May 22, 2011 - 17:17

JALALABAD (PANinfo-icon): With a string of stunning triumphs in recent outings against formidable rivals, Afghan cricketers are capable of beating their Pakistani counterparts, the national coach said on Sunday.

In an exclusive interview with Pajhwok Afghan News, Rashid Latif said: "I'm optimistic of Afghanistaninfo-icon scoring upset wins over Pakistaninfo-icon during the upcoming visit to the neighbouring country."

During a training session for the squad, scheduled to embark on a three-match tour of Pakistan this week, the former wicket-keeper said Afghans were gifted with skills that Pakistani, Bangladeshi, Indian and Sri Lankan cricketers did not have.

Because of their remarkable physical fitness and extensive training, the Afghans could give even the Aussies and Protease a tough time in any format of the game, the ex-Pakistani skipper believed, saying he was proud of coaching a side that was stoutly supported by the entire nation.

In response to a query, Latif said Afghan cricketers had unique qualities, such as adherence to Islam, regularly praying five times a day and demonstrating an exceptional level of courage under the most testing of circumstances.

The Pakistan-A team included highly talented players, he acknowledged. But on their day, he explained, the Afghans had the knack of thrashing any opposition. Latif insisted the national team had been trained well in all departments of the game.

Hopeful of proving their mettle in Pakistan, national captain Nawroz Mangal said they had learnt a lot of new techniques from the coach during the training camp. The Afghans, who recently played friendly matches in Peshawar, were used to Pakistan's weather conditions and tracks.

Raees Ahmadzai, in charge of the Afghanistan Cricket Board's Technical Department, touted the team's technical strength and said Latif had comprehensively coached the players during the training camp.



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