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I want India to reach semis: Akhtar

Out-of-favour Pakistan pacer Shoaib Akhtar wants arch-rival India to reach the semifinal of the ICC Champions Trophy so that the event does not lose its charm and interest.

cricket Updated: Sep 29, 2009 23:19 IST

Out-of-favour Pakistan pacer Shoaib Akhtar wants arch-rival India to reach the semifinal of the ICC Champions Trophy so that the event does not lose its charm and interest.

"I would like to see India qualify for the semi finals tomorrow because their presence will make the tournament more
interesting and colorful and we might even end up with a Indo-Pak final which could be a super boost for one-day
cricket," Shoaib said on Duniya channel today.

Akhtar, who was not picked for the Champions Trophy, said India could beat West Indies by a big margin and qualify for the semi finals despite their disappointing form.

"There is no doubt that at the moment India is short on confidence and Pakistan is high on confidence. But India can
change things.

"India is capable of beating the under strength West Indian side by a margin of more than 100 runs. And if they
qualify for the semi finals I think we will see a totally different Indian team in the knockout stage," he said.

Akhtar said India could become a danger for the other teams if they reach the semi finals as their body language and
performances would definitely change for better and they would be a different side in the knockout stage.

"Naturally I would love to see Pakistan win the Champions Trophy because that is my team but India must also remain in the competition because they bring value to the competition," he said.