By Rafiq Vayani
KARACHI: The Australian High Commissioner to Pakistan, Margaret Adamson, today opened an exhibition of photographs from the 1992 Cricket World Cup played in Australia.
“1992 was a tournament of firsts. The first World Cup played in Australia. The first appearance of coloured kit, white balls and night cricket. And, most importantly, the first World Cup collected by Pakistan,” Ms Adamson said.
“This wonderful exhibition of photos by Iqbal Munir captures the ecstasy of the Pakistani players during that victory over the English,” she said.
Ms Adamson noted that although Australia and Pakistan were fierce competitors on the field, cricket was a unifying passion for the two countries.
“Every summer, more than a million Australians play the game, and you see the same enthusiasm here in Pakistan. On every street, in every open space, youngsters are out hitting the ball, grabbing a wicket, being part of the team,” she said.
“Pakistan has produced some of the game’s true champions: Imran Khan, the best of skippers; Shahid Afridi, who hit more sixes than anyone else in one-day internationals; Sarfraz Nawaz, Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis, who pioneered reverse swing,” she said.
The exhibition of work by Iqbal Munir, a widely travelled cricket photographer and enthusiast, will be open to public on 14 and 15 May at Dolmen Mall, Karachi.
“What happened on the field in 1992 might be etched in the memory of every cricket fan in the country and is refreshed every four years by the barrage of video clips and pictures that flood social media and television screens,” Mr Munir said.
“Few know what happened behind the scenes. As the team’s official photographer, I trailed the cricketers closely, capturing every move and emotion that shed light on their state of mind and let us recall the intimate details that led to the momentous victory,” he said.
Iqbal Munir is the son of late cricket commentator and journalist Munir Hussain. His World Cup photographs are compiled in the book, Pakistan: World Champions. In 1987, he also wrote An Eye on Imran.