Pakistan won their first and only 50-over World Cup by beating England in the summit clash at the Melbourne Cricket Ground during the summer of 1992.
Pakistan played like ‘cornered tigers’ during the second half of the tournament after having endured a horrendous start to their campaign where they lost three of their first 5 matches.
They could have been knocked out had the game against England- where they were dismissed for 74- not got abandoned due to rain.
The Imran Khan-led unit won all their remaining games to qualify for the semi-finals where they beat New Zealand before turning the tables on England in the final.
Captain Imran Khan was hailed for his inspiring leadership but, according to Aamir Sohail, the former World Cup-winning captain had nearly given up and he was even thinking about returning to Pakistan midway through the season and it was Javed Miandad, who motivated his captain, urging him to lead from the front.
”The major contribution came from Javed Miandad. He was the inspiration. At one time, Imran (Khan) had given up. He was not 100 percent fit and was thinking of going back to Pakistan. But it was Javed Miandad, who kept on urging him that ‘you are the captain, you have to lead from the front,’’ revealed Aamir Sohail during an interaction on Youtube show ‘Cricket Life Stories’
“He asked Imran not to worry about injuries because every international athlete takes ground with some kind of injury. So muster your strength, and you have to represent Pakistan. It was Miandad who actually influenced everybody. He was guiding Imran through with everything and it really worked for Pakistan,” Sohail further added.
Aamir Sohail also went on to hail Imran Khan for the manner in which he kept on giving confidence to youngsters.
The former opener, who wasn’t a part of the original squad, revealed an instance when Imran Khan told him that he will play the entire World Cup irrespective of his performances after he had scored a half-century against South Africa in a practice game.
”Imran was great inspiration as well. He was great at giving confidence to youngsters. I was not in the final squad for the World Cup, I was on trial. So, I scored a few runs in practice games. I got a 70-odd in a practice match against South Africa in Canberra. After the game, he took me aside at the hotel reception and said, ‘you played really well. I am assuring you that you would be playing the entire World Cup. Even if you score 10 ducks in a row, I will still play you in the final’,” Sohail recalled.