Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

The maverick finally mellowed. Succumbing under pressure from several quarters, legendary Pakistan cricketer Javed Miandad clarified about his controversial remark on India.

The former Pakistan captain had recently courted controversy for his inflammatory comments about India. Miandad had slammed the Indian cricket team by saying it ‘to go to hell’ for refusing to tour Pakistan for the 2023 Asia Cup.

“I have always been saying, if India doesn’t want to come, we don’t care. They can go to hell. We are getting our cricket. It’s ICC’s job to control such things, else there’s no point of having a governing body. ICC should have one rule for every country. If such teams don’t come, no matter how strong they are, you should remove them,” Miandad had said during a television interview.

However, Miandad’s statement sparked outrage across the subcontinent. Several former cricketers in Miandad’s own nation also expressed their disapproval. 

Later succumbing under pressure, Miandad clarified his statement by saying that he merely meant that if India believes that not coming to Pakistan will have an detrimental effect on the home country, it will not. Ultimately, he desires both countries to have a strong cricketing relationship as earlier. He believes that India’s visit to Pakistan would have been a step in the right direction, benefiting both the nations.

“Do you know what hell means? If you don’t want to play just don’t. We don’t have a problem. Ask the Indian cricketers. They will also say that there should be cricket between both the teams in their respective countries. It will benefit both nations,” said Miandad on his YouTube channel.

“If they think that India not coming to Pakistan makes any difference, let me tell you that it doesn’t have any effect. Pakistan has produced world-class players. Neighbouring countries are playing with each other everywhere around the world,” he said.

“Earlier we used to visit India and they also used to come to Pakistan as well. When the India team came to play a series in Pakistan, so many people from India also came to watch. There were no hotels available and Lahore residents invited them to their houses. It had a very good impact on the relationships between both the countries,” he further added.