PAKISTAN CRICKET TEAM NOT NATIONAL WITHOUT MINORITIES, BISHOP SAYS
April 09 1996
"Did Pakistan lose in Bangalore?" a Catholic bishop asked in a letter to the editor on the country´s national cricket team, which was ousted from World Cup play by India March 9. "No, not at all!"
Bishop John Joseph of Faisalabad, chairman of the Pakistani bishops´ National Justice and Peace Commission, said that "factually speaking, the team that lost in Bangalore (India) represented a particular group.
"Had that team represented Pakistan, there definitely would have been some players from the minority communities of Pakistan!" he said.
Bishop Joseph insisted in the letter published March 21 in Dawn, an English-language daily, that a team that has no Christian, Hindu or Parsi members cannot be accepted by minorities as "national."
Some Christians, whose sympathies were with other teams, asserted that India and Sri Lanka do not care about their players´ religions, wondering why their predominantly Muslim country looks at everything with a regard to religion.
India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka hosted this year´s World Cup. In the final match March 17 in Lahore, Pakistan, Australia lost to Sri Lanka.
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