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World Cup 2019: Players had no plans of celebrating differently in India match, says Pakistan team manager

Ali said that the match versus India is like any other contest.

Pakistan team
Pakistan team. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

The relationship between India and Pakistan hasn’t gotten any better in the last few years. In fact, after the Pulwama Attacks, it has worsened and even calls for boycotting their match in Manchester in the ongoing World Cup came to the fore. Recently, MS Dhoni, the former Indian captain, wore the ‘Balidaan Badge’ on his keeping gloves and that has undoubtedly added fuel to the fire.

To make things worse, it was learned that the Pakistani players wanted to celebrate India’s wickets ‘differently’ when the arch-rivals meet on June 16 at the Old Trafford. However, PCB rejected the request and asked the players to stick to only ‘cricket’ during the marquee clash. Recently, Talat Ali, Pakistan’s team manager, also spoke on the issue.

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We follow the guideline given to us by the PCB

Ali, who’s a former international cricketer as well, rubbished all the reports. The 69-year-old mentioned that the Pakistan cricketers didn’t have any plans of celebrating differently in the first place itself. Ali was also pretty clear in saying that their match versus the Men in Blue is just another game and they don’t wish to dilute the sanctity of the sport by involving politics.

“No such instructions have been issued to the players. The players met with Imran Khan at Bani Gala before flying to London. After that the Prime Minister has had no contact with the players,” Ali was quoted as saying in Indian Express.

“We follow the guideline given to us by the Pakistan Cricket Board and for us, the match against India is just like against any other team. Obviously, it is a high-profile match but we just focus on cricket and don’t have any politics in our mind,” he asserted.

Earlier, a statement had to be issued negating media reports that the Pakistan players were planning to wear camouflaged military caps during the match against India.

“…we have no special plans for the match. As far as the cricket is concerned chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq, captain Sarfaraz Ahmed and head coach Mickey Arthur are discussing strategy and team for the important match. But our players will only focus on playing good cricket,” Ali added.

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