Dawn Pakistan's most widely circulated English language newspaper.

Pakistan, West Indies bowled highest number of no-balls

By Zafar Samdani

21 December 1997

LAHORE : While most of the leading cricket playing nations are working for achieving virtually computerised precision, a scientific approach and bringing professionalism in their teams to the highest level, Pakistan and West Indies continue sticking to their erratic ways. The two teams bowled the highest number of no balls and wides in the just ending Champion's Trophy at Sharjah. A total of 80 such extra runs were conceded by participating teams in league matches; of these 55 was the contribution of pre tournament favourites Pakistan and losing finalists West Indies.

Pakistan led the field with 28 extras (23 wides, five no balls); the West Indies were beaten in to second place by the narrowest margin as their score was 27 comprising 15 wides and 12 no balls. Unwilling to play second fiddle in undisciplined bowling, the West Indians lost the final through 13 extras-five wides and eight no balls.

England won the final with 11 balls remaining. The West Indies 13 extras counted for 2.1 overs and 13 runs. These statistics would attribute England win to the West Indies error ridden ways, other things remaining equal.

In their league encounter, Pakistan and West Indies matched extra for extra, Pakistan sending down 12 wides and a no ball and the Carribeans delivering seven wides and four no balls. This had little bearing on the result, however, as Pakistan lost the match by 43 runs. It was nevertheless a clash as much of talent as sloppiness which Pakistan won by a single extra.

The one time Pakistan managed to put its act at a professional keel, it won the World Cup although many an expert rates the present combination better than the Cup winning squad, at least in the range of bowling. While batting often leaves a lot to be desired, bowling blunts its edge by no balls and wides that give the opponents extra runs and balls. Brilliance of individuals will always be a factor in the success of teams but there is no room for indiscipline. England winning the Trophy at Sharjah brought this point home with a certain finality. One hopes Pakistan's players registered the message.

Source: Dawn
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Date-stamped : 25 Feb1998 - 14:57