I always said I would die twice: when I left the world and when I left cricket
Saqlain Mushtaq talks to NUSTians about cricket, memories and his ideology of life.
Islamabad: Star cricketer Saqlain Mushtaq visited NUST to speak at a session organized to celebrate his sporting achievements on Monday. He spoke at length about his humble beginnings, his rise to fame and how his spirituality strengthened along each step of the way.
“I went out of cricket at my peak, my knees went away and I spent 37 weeks on crutches”, Mushtaq said. This phase, according to him, gave him faith in the face of depression attacks.
A veteran of 49 tests and 169 One Day Internationals (ODIs), Mushtaq recounted many anecdotes, taking care to elaborate the lessons he had learnt from them. “The crux of my experiences is that you should take care of quality, quantity and consistency in your work”.
Earlier, Mushtaq sent a ripple of Laughter through the hall when he corrected a mistake made by the host. “My college was called MAO, not MOU”, he said with a smile. The host, Fatima Hassan, later told PaperCrush that the mistake was due to a typographical error in her notes. “But yes, I was feeling a little bit nervous too”
He humbly gave the credit of all his achievements to God’s grace more than anything else. “I always asked God to give me something that no one else had”, Mushtaq said referring to his invention of the Doosra. A ball that changed the stature of off-spinners in cricket.
After his speech, Mushtaq was interviewed on stage about some specific cricketing moments in his career. He said it was a lack of preparation and media pressure that cost Pakistan the 1999 World Cup final. “Pakistan is still called unpredictable, but that just means we’re not prepared enough.”
Even though the session began almost an hour after the designated time, Mushtaq was greeted by energetic applause from a hall filled to its maximum capacity. But not everyone was satisfied at the end. “We thought it would be interactive, I really wanted to ask him about dismissing Tendulkar twice in the same match”, said Zain ul Abideen, a member of the crowd.
The event ended with a Dua led by Mushtaq, after which he was presented with a shield by the organizers.