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Last Updated:  Wednesday, 5 March, 2003, 12:14 GMT

Pakistan issue public apology
Fans in Pakistan burned pictures of the players
We are ashamed, disappointed, sad and heartbroken
Pakistan team statement
Pakistan's cricketers have said sorry to their fans for their disappointing World Cup display.

The Pakistan Cricket Board appointed a three-man commission on Wednesday to examine the reasons behind the side's early exit.

And the players issued a statement on the eve of their return home in an attempt to appease fans.

"We are ashamed, disappointed, sad and heartbroken after letting the nation down," the statement said.

"We knew that we were carrying the hopes of millions of our fans and have failed to live up to expectations.

"We tried our level best, we trained extremely hard and did everything within our reach.

"But things didnt work the way we would have liked to and we have no excuses to offer."

Pakistan came into the World Cup with high hopes after reaching the final four years ago.

But they could only beat non-Test sides Namibia and Holland as they failed to gain qualification from Group A.

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The disappointment of the team's worst showing since the inaugural tournament in 1975 was exacerbated by the six-wicket defeat against bitter rivals India.

And fans in Pakistan vented their anger by burning effigies and pictures of the players.

"We know that tempers are high back home and rightly so because we have not played the cricket we were capable of," the team statement added.

"The anger of the fans is justified because they are the ones who made us the heroes and have every right to criticize us for our failures.

"In the end, we express our apologies and would like to share the grief with every single follower of the game.

"The sun will rise again tomorrow and Inshallah (God willing) Pakistan will bounce back and cricket would continue to flourish."

The PCB has asked former test player and selector Naushad Ali to sit on the commission along with Aquib Javed and Sultan Rana.





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