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12th January 2017, 04:15 #1
"It's not far from the (WC qualification) cut-off time so we want to be on top of it" : Azhar Ali
Pakistan could be without vice-captain and wicketkeeper Sarfraz Ahmed for their entire five-match ODI series against Australia.
Captain Azhar Ali confirmed on Thursday that Sarfraz had returned to Pakistan to be with his mother, who is ill and in intensive care in hospital.
Mohammad Rizwan will take the gloves for Friday's opening day-night clash at the Gabba and possibly for the remainder of the tour if Sarfraz does not return.
It comes just days after fast bowler Mohammad Irfan had also left the team following the death of his mother.
"We'll definitely miss him tomorrow. Hopefully, he can rejoin the team but, as for right now, he's not here," Azhar told reporters.
Around half the players involved in Pakistan's Test series whitewash against Australia have been retained in the ODI squad.
However, the addition of few fresh faces and Tuesday's 196-run thumping of a Cricket Australia XI in Brisbane have helped brighten the mood around the team, according to Azhar.
"I know it wasn't a very competitive game, but I still believe the batsmen who scored runs will get a lot of confidence," he said.
"The bowlers had a good outing as well.
"There's nothing like playing matches. It's good to be out there, no matter what sort of team you play against."
Pakistan are at No.8 in the ICC's latest ODI rankings and must remain in the top eight come September to be automatic qualifiers for the 2019 World Cup.
"It's not far from the cut-off time so we want to be on top of it," Azhar said.
"As a team, we improved in the last four or five games - our performances have been really good. We want to keep building on that."
12th January 2017, 04:21 #2
No motivational speech this time.
A skilled hawk conceals its talons.
12th January 2017, 05:39 #3
Seems Azhar's pretty conflicted in what he wants to go about say.......
Claims"I know it wasn't a very competitive game"no matter what sort of team you play against
12th January 2017, 05:42 #4
Pakistan ODI captain Azhar Ali said on Thursday that the visitors need to perform in the upcoming five-match series against Australia keeping in mind the 2019 World Cup.
Pakistan currently languish eighth in the International Cricket Council’s ODI rankings with 89 points, just two points ahead of West Indies. The top eight ranked teams qualify automatically for the World Cup and the cut-off date for that is September this year. The remaining teams would have to play qualifying matches in 2018.
Speaking during a press conference at the Gabba, Azhar said that his side’s aim is to stay in the top eight prior to the cut-off date. “We’re not far from the cut-off date, so we want to stay in the top eight,” he said ahead of the series opener in Brisbane tomorrow.
“Obviously this is a big challenge and we all know that, but it’s an opportunity for us to express ourselves and a good result would be great for our ranking,” he added.
Australia hand Lynn, Stanlake ODI debuts against Pakistan
The ODI captain added that if they perform well against Australia then it would also give the tourists a boost in confidence. “When you play in Australia and you do well, it will be wonderful for the confidence of our team,” he said.
Pakistan were whitewashed by Australia 3-0 in the recently concluded Test series. However, Azhar said his side will be looking to begin the ODI series with a fresh outlook.
“Obviously we have to start fresh [after the Test series] and some fresh faces have come into the team,” he said.
“It’s been a long, long tour. We’ve played a lot of cricket since England so it’s always good to have fresh energy in the team and we’re looking forward to a fresh series.
“As a team we have improved and in our last four or five games, our performances have been really good. We want to keep building on that and improve our performances,” he added.
Azhar confirmed that his team will be without their vice-captain and wicketkeeper Sarfraz Ahmed for the opening game and possibly this month’s entire five-match series.
“We’ll definitely miss Sarfraz tomorrow. Hopefully, he can rejoin the team but, as for right now, he’s not here,” he said.
Sarfraz had returned to Pakistan to be with his mother, who is in intensive care in hospital.
Mohammad Rizwan will take the gloves for the first day-night match and could remain in the side if Sarfraz does not return to Australia.
Last edited by jeetu; 12th January 2017 at 06:03.
Aaj ka kaam kal karo, Kal ka kaam parson. Aisi bhi jaldi kya hai, Jab jeena hai barson.
12th January 2017, 06:07 #5
I honestly want to see the back of him when it comes to ODI captaincy, he's not fit to lead an international side.
12th January 2017, 07:22 #6Newcomer
- Jan 2017
- 0 Post(s)
- 0 Thread(s)
Best of luck but in reality I don't see the chances of Pakistan qualifying directly, theyll need to play out of their skins to win all the upcoming games!
They should arrange 7 match odi against this weak Srilankan and West indies tram and try to whitewash both of them otherwise the dark awaits! We have 5 in Australia and 4,5 matches in Englands Champions trophy and they'll be tough to win so unless selectors and board appoint a decent captain and select a reasonable squad we won't be able to win it!
12th January 2017, 07:34 #7
Nice to see we got a energetic captain who knows what he is doing. I am very excited to see what he will do on the field.
12th January 2017, 07:39 #8
12th January 2017, 09:10 #9T20I Debutant
- Feb 2014
- 17 Post(s)
- 1 Thread(s)
12th January 2017, 10:30 #10
I don't really like azhar for ODIs but I hope in this series he bats well and captains well. Even an ODi match victory will be fine for us. Just go out there and play positively.
It is either a heartache or a headache ..Argh relationships.