KARACHI: Former Pakistan captain and legendary paceman Wasim Akram Tuesday tipped Pakistan as one of top three favourites to win the World Twenty20 starting in Bangladesh next week.
The fifth edition of the World Twenty20 with 16 teams in competition will be held in from March 16 to April 6.
“For me Pakistan, India and the West Indies are top three favourites as they play this format well and have enough experience at their disposal,” Wasim said during a reception here.
India won the inaugural World Twenty20 held in South Africa in 2007 while Pakistan won the second edition held in England two years later.
The West Indies will defend the title they won in Sri Lanka in 2012.
Hosts Bangladesh and Zimbabwe along with six qualifiers will open the first round of the fifth edition of the World Twenty20.
The top two teams from the first round will join the eight seeded teams in the second round which kicks off with a much-awaited India-Pakistan clash in Dhaka on March 21.
Wasim said an Indo-Pak match will be an ideal kick off to the main round.
“What else do you want as an opening match,” said Wasim, who will be commentating on the event.
“Whenever Pakistan and India play, millions watch the game and there are no favourites in that match.”
Wasim said Pakistan must enter the event with a positive frame of mind.
“Pakistan had a very balanced squad and all they need to do is to enter the event with a positive frame of mind,” said Wasim.
Akram also raised question marks over the captaincy of Misbah-ul-Haq and said the PCB needs to appointment a brave and aggressive skipper for the 2015 World Cup.
The former seamer told reporters here that while there was no question about Misbah-ul-Haq’s batting performances, the situation was not the same about his captaincy.
“They are question marks about his captaincy,” he said on Tuesday.
Asked about the possibility of PCB appointing Shahid Afridi as captain for next World Cup, Wasim said this was something for the board to ponder and decide.
“All I would say is that we need to have a brave and aggressive captain for the World Cup. Because we need to play positive cricket to do well,” he added.
Wasim said Pakistan had adopted the wrong approach for the Asia Cup final where it was defeated by Sri Lanka.
“I thought the decision to bat first was not correct, we should have stuck with our winning formula throughout the tournament.”
He said that Pakistan had failed to play proper positive cricket in the final and the result was a loss.
He also advised the team management to use the pace bowlers properly, pointing out that Junaid Khan was being under used.
“In my mind Junaid is your best bowler right now and he needs to be given his full quota of overs in any form of the game,” he said.