The mysterious death of then Pakistan cricket team coach Bob Woolmer in 2007 came as a shocker for the entire cricketing world. Woolmer was found dead in his hotel room under mysterious circumstances just days after their shock defeat against Ireland in the ICC World Cup and it has been 13 years since that incident. Former Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar remembered Woolmer on his death anniversary on Thursday and in a video on his YouTube channel, he discussed his relationships with the late coach.
“People think we used to fight a lot but it was not like that. When he became the coach he came to me in Northampton and said that ‘Shoaib, I don’t want any trouble from you,’ and I said him that he was talking to the wrong person and he will not have any problem with me and then he said that others have indicated this to him,” the former tearaway Pakistan pacer said.
Akhtar also said that he and Woolmer did not talk much because of ‘ideological’ differences.
“I believed in match winning performances and that match can get over soon. Cricket is a game of match winners and a good spell or a good innings can win the match for the team but Bob used to think that cricket is a team sport.”
“During the England tour after some initial hiccups I was selected in the team for my pace and I took wickets against a very high-spirited England team, who were coming after an Ashes win. We taught them a lesson and I took wickets in Multan, Faisalabad and then took a 5 wicket haul in the Lahore ODI. Woolmer was very happy then and he danced, later he told me that Shoaib you were right, individual acts do win matches,” he added.
In the video, Akhtar also got emotional while talking about his last meeting with Woolmer.
“I met him the night team was leaving for West Indies for the World Cup 2007. I told him to take care of himself and tell him not to worry much as it not the end of the world. When I was leaving he called me back and hugged my saying, ‘Shoaib I will miss you,’ I said to him I will miss you too. That was the last time we met.
“It was the most painful time for me. I was calling people left right and centre and trying to know what happened. It was a chaotic situation. The chairman ran away and PCB was facing humiliation. Finally the government took over and sent people for investigation,” he concluded.