Shoaib Akhtar reveals 'sad secret' about the defeat of the 2003 World Cup in India

NEW DELHI: former Pakistan pacemaker Shoaib Akhtar He has revealed his sad secret about the 2003 World Cup match against India that his team lost by six wickets.

In the group stage match played on March 1, 2003 at Centurion in South Africa, the Pakistan team failed to defend a goal of 274. India moved on Sachin Tendulkar It is brilliant 98 to pursue the goal with more than four leftovers.

In a video posted on his YouTube channel, Akhtar has revealed how his physical condition and poor captaincy of then Captain Waqar Younis prevented Pakistan from recording his first victory over India in the World Cup.

The most disappointing game for me in my entire career was the 2003 World Cup match against India in Centurion. We were unable to defend a 274 goal despite having a very good bowling lineup, Akhtar said.

The 'Rawalpindi Express' revealed that the night before the game, he had to receive 4-5 injections in his left knee because he fell asleep. Due to the injections, the water had filled in my left knee and there was no feeling in it.

After the end of our innings, I told my teammates that we have probably scored 30-40 fewer runs. However, all the players on the team yelled at me saying '273 is not enough, so what is it?' They said we will. Being able to take out all of India. However, I knew that the field was good for batting and will remain so in the second inning.

When we started the bowling, I noticed that my left knee had gone numb. Because of which, I wasn't able to run properly through my bowling run-up. As a result I was not able to bowl properly. Indian openers, Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag, went for the charge from the word go. In fact, Sachin played me very well and even hit me for a six over point.

I had no idea how to play bowling and make progress. Unfortunately, the captain (Waqar Younis) took me out of the attack. He brought me later at the entrances, where I finished fast and short. I took out Sachin in 98 minutes. A short delivery. I told the captain that I should have persisted with this type of bowling from the beginning. In the end we lost the game, he added.

The 43-year-old ran 72 races in that game and picked up Sachin's only wicket, but by then the match was already in India's pocket.

It was a bitter experience for me because we could have defeated India, both in 1999 and 2003, but we couldn't. Not taking credit from India, which has played us very well in the World Cups, said Akhtar, a veteran of 46 tests and 163 ODI, said.

I still regret that loss. If we could have scored a few more races and played better, we could have won that game. But unfortunately, my physical condition got in the way and also, it was the bad captaincy that made us lose that game. he added.

India and Pakistan have met seven times in the World Cups, and the Men in Blue have won every time.