LAHORE (Pakistan): Present and past members of the Pakistan national cricket teams on Thursday joined to celebrate one of the most iconic and memorable moments in the country’s cricket history — a 22-run victory over England in the final of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup on March 25, 1992, in front of more than 89,000 spectators at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
While Misbah-ul-Haq, Mohammad Hafeez, Nida Dar, Sarfaraz Ahmed and Younis Khan reflected on the impact of Melbourne win on their careers, members of the 1992 side Aamer Sohail, Aqib Javed and Mushtaq Ahmed shared their experiences and the champions’ mindset with current members of the national teams.
The World Cup victory was the catalyst for future triumphs, including back-to-back ICC U19 Cricket World Cup titles in 2004 and 2006, ICC T20 World Cup 2009 trophy, lifting of the ICC Test Championship mace in 2016 and the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 victory at The Oval.
When Pakistan won the ICC Champions Trophy 2017, it became only the second country after India to win all four ICC Majors — the World Cup, the T20 World Cup, Champions Trophy and the ICC Test Championship mace.
Younis Khan, who was 14 in 1992 and subsequently became the second Pakistan captain to win a major ICC event in 2009 before finishing as the most successful Test batsman, said in a PCB release: “The final of the 1992 World Cup is the only match of which I watched every ball. It was the month of Ramadan and I did not move from where I was sitting, even for Iftar [to break the fast]. I remember every ball of that match and it inspired me to win a trophy for my country and luckily Pakistan won the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup under my captaincy in 2009. The 1992 World Cup victory changed the landscape of Pakistan’s cricket and after that we dominated the 90s,” he added.
Misbah-ul-Haq, who was 17 then and 24 years later lifted the ICC Test Championship mace, said: “It was an important milestone in our cricketing history and I remember that match. I was in FSc. We had to get up early in the morning to watch the matches and I have special memories of that event.
“That win inspired me to take up cricket. I used to play with a tape ball before the 1992 win, but after it I started to play with the cricket ball. The way Javed Miandad and Imran Khan-led the side and the way youngsters like Inzamam-ul-Haq, Wasim Akram and Aqib Javed rose to the occasion, I still remember everything as it is. Those moments became the shining light for me throughout my cricketing career and I applied them in my captaincy,” he added.
Sarfaraz Ahmed, who was then a five-year-old but captained Pakistan to ICC U19 Cricket World Cup 2006 and ICC Champions Trophy 2017 titles, said: “I was five when Pakistan won the World Cup and it is one of those moments which stay with you from childhood. I started to play cricket after that win. I think it revived cricket in the country and it gave us the stars in Inzamam-ul-Haq, Mushtaq Ahmed and Moin Khan who went on to become legends. That victory remains a huge motivation for us as after it we went on to win the Asia Cup and the ICC Champions Trophy in 2017. Such victories inspire the coming generations to push themselves,” he added.