ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s former controversial fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar has said that losing to India in the World Cup semifinal in Mohali is the greatest regret of his life. Shoaib though was not a part of the Pakistan playing XI in that match, but he said defeat to India always hurt more than anything else in his cricketing career. The enigmatic fast bowler announced his retirement from international cricket during the World Cup and was sidelined by the tour selectors for Pakistan’s last four games after he had a bust up with teammate Kamran Akmal during the match against New Zealand.
Shoaib also admitted in an interview to a Sunday magazine that he himself didn’t like his mood swings that had got him into trouble numerous times in his career. Meanwhile, the chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Ijaz Butt and captain Shahid Afridi have made some scathing comments about his fitness in the World Cup, but Shoaib has remained tightlipped about it. Rawalpindi Express, who has kept a low profile since returning from the World Cup, was suppose to come and receive a shield of honour from the organisers of a T20 tournament in Karachi on Saturday night but pulled out at the last moment.
The organisers said Shoaib had informed them he could not make it to Karachi because of the death of a close relative. Asked about his idea of perfect happiness, Shoaib said he got that feeling when his parents were happy. “My greatest fear in life is of losing my parents,” said Shoaib, adding that his mother is his most treasured possession. He also said that at the moment he didn’t feel any restrictions and felt free for the first time after a long time in his career. The pacer said his favorite quote remained: “I don’t believe in teamwork; give me a team that works!” Shoaib, who has reportedly been signed up to play in the Sri Lankan Premier League T20 competition in July, revealed that playing for Pakistan remained his greatest achievement in life.