Younis to play through pain

Younis to play through pain

“It will be a big game, but I want to take it as a normal game,” the Pakistan skipper said on Friday. “When you put a lot of pressure on yourself, you collapse. I am motivating my boys by telling them it is just another game. Whoever wins, cricket must win.”

At the same time, Younis ruled out Pakistan seeking revenge for their T20 losses against India in this country two years back, or the 2003 World Cup defeat at this venue. “It’s not about revenge. We’re not fighting, it’s a sport, it’s not revenge. Me and Dhoni will be happy and calm. Whoever handles pressure better will be the winner. At the start of every match, it’s a 50-50 game.”

Explaining the rationale behind playing despite not being fully fit, the right-handed batsman went on, “Maybe if it wasn’t India, I would’ve skipped this match. “I have been advised four weeks rest. I have a fracture and I need not play against India and Australia. If you don’t perform in a big tournament, you have to face the consequences, so it’s very easy for me to run away here.

“But I am looking at the big picture. If I perform tomorrow, score a hundred and become man of the match, win the match for Pakistan, that will be remembered for long because I played with a broken finger. I needed to motivate myself for this. We’re all used to playing in pain, the self-motivation has to be there to get up and play for the country. I want to do something like Sachin did in 2003 (when he made 98 while battling pain), something for my country which they will remember for ages.”

Asked if Pakistan would benefit from Yuvraj Singh’s absence, he replied, “Both nations are behind their teams, it becomes a do-or-die situation. Yuvi being injured is not good luck for us, but bad luck for India.”

Then, reflecting on the Tendulkar factor, Younis went on, “There is no fear, he is not a jin-bhoot. He is a great player and I like it when he scores runs because I learn something. There probably will be pressure on him because he is missing two top players in Yuvraj and Sehwag.”

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