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Page last updated at 18:23 GMT, Sunday, 21 June 2009 19:23 UK
ICC World Twenty20 2009



Pakistan captain Younus Khan lifts the ICC World Twenty20 trophy
Younus (centre) captained Pakistan to an eight-wicket win on Sunday

Victorious World Twenty20 captain Younus Khan wants teams to consider touring Pakistan despite the uncertain security situation in his country.

"Everybody's following Twenty20 and now we are champions it would be good if we could get some home series," he said as he also announced his T20 retirement.

"I'd like all the countries to come to Pakistan again. The situation is not good but it's not our fault.

"If there isn't any cricket in Pakistan how can we motivate the youngsters."

Pakistan was stripped of hosting rights for the 2011 World Cup, and teams have cancelled tours to a country torn by political problems and frequent acts of terrorism.

As recently as March, Sri Lanka's team bus was attacked by gunmen as it made its way to play a Test match in Lahore.

But Younus insisted: "I would say to the world, please come to Pakistan and play. I am very proud of my nation, I'm a proud man and this victory is good for all of us."

Other than the ill-fated series against Sri Lanka earlier this year, they have not hosted a home Test series since South Africa visited in October 2007 and their last one-day series was at home to Bangladesh over a year ago.

Younus, draped in a Pakistan flag as he spoke to journalists after the game, dedicated the final triumph to former coach Bob Woolmer, who died suddenly in Jamaica during the 2007 World Cup.

"This final must be dedicated to Bob because he did a lot of good for us, especially my cricket," said Younus. "He would be very proud if he was still alive.

"He was a father figure for us at that time. He was the guy who kept saying to the chairman and the selectors that Younus would be the next captain and because of him I have become a captain."

It was always tough for our bowling unit to keep defending totals throughout the tournament when we probably could have scored 20 runs more

Kumar Sangakkara

Younus reflected on Pakistan's remarkable journey through the tournament, which featured a solitary win against the Netherlands amid defeats to England and Sri Lanka early on.

"It's fantastic. We were the underdogs and nobody picked us. But we certainly turned it on in the big games."

Shahid Afridi's return to form with the bat was a vital aspect. He hit half-centuries in both the semi-final and final - picking up the man-of-the-match award each time.

Younus said of Afridi: "We need him at the top of the order, especially in the one-day game. He knows that he's a match-winner for us. Especially in the last two innings, he was really fantastic for us."

Afridi, once a big hitter to make all bowling attacks run scared, had been in poor form with the bat in recent times.

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The 29-year-old, part of the side beaten in the 1999 World Cup and the 2007 Twenty20 final, said his skipper had helped him to rediscover his form in this tournament.

"The last two and a half, three years I have bowled really well but I was struggling with my batting.

"Younus gave me good confidence. I told him that I wanted to bat at number three in the order and he said OK, if you're confident just go and play. Don't worry about anything, just go.

"The guys really motivated themselves and Younus really supported the guys and told us to go and enjoy our cricket. Twenty20 is all about enjoyment and entertainment, if you do this then you perform well."

Experienced batsman Shoaib Malik was part of the match-winning stand with Afridi, as Pakistan nervelessly chased a target of 139 to win by eight wickets with eight balls remaining.

"I think it was a pressure game. When I was on my way to batting I just kept thinking about that, that I had to stay there until the 20th over and I did it," said Malik.

It was Afridi who played the big shots, though, as Malik acknowledged.

"The way Shahid was batting too was awesome. I was saying to him please stay at the wicket, if you stay at the wicket I will also get some runs and if we stand together I'm sure we can finish the game. He is a great cricketer."

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Explaining why he was choosing to retire from Twenty20 cricket, Younus added: "I am now 34, I am old for this kind of cricket. The good thing is we have some good youngsters."

Beaten captain Kumar Sangakkara said his bowlers had done his country proud, calling them "the best bowling unit in the world at the moment."

He added: "It was always tough for our bowling unit to keep defending totals right throughout the tournament when we probably could have scored 20 runs more.

"Hopefully we can get stronger, get better, learn from what we've done as we've got a lot more cricket coming up. We'll really look forward to more cricket to toughen us up both physically and mentally."



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