The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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I’m mature now: Shoaib

Islamabad Sept. 21 (PTI): Shoaib Akhtar, Pakistan’s tearaway fast bowler feels most great cricketers are “mad”. The reasoning being they don’t see situations and instead play their game with guts.

“When you are more than brave you are mad. Sir Viv Richards was mad when he went out to bat without wearing a helmet and hooked bowlers hurling the ball at 100 miles at him. But there is cleverness behind the madness,” he said.

However, the paceman, nicknamed the “Rawalpindi Express”, described himself as a “wise” and matured cricketer than he was and said he is willing to take up the mantle of captaincy if the opportunity came his way.

“If it (the captaincy) will come to me. I know that I am capable of leading the Pakistan team,” he said.

The fast bowler, who had called himself a “wild horse” in the early years of his career, said, “I’m not a wild horse anymore. I am wise now. I am a good boy.”

Akhtar, who is currently taking part in the ICC Champions Trophy said that he had no intention of “running for it”.

“Whenever the captaincy comes to me, in one year’s time or six months, I want to be in control of the team. I want to serve the country and make sure that I leave my name in the book of history forever.”

Akhtar said he did not want to merely be a great bowler or a selfish captain, but a great servant of the country. “I’ll prove that I am a great leader of men when the time comes.”

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