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  1. #1
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    "Was an amazing experience although very tiring" : Arham_PakFan on the PSL Final [Member Interview]

    Thanks to the brilliant @Arham_PakFan for his answers. Also, seems like it is his birthday today. Many happy returns of the day!

    PakPassion.net: If given a chance, which international cricketer would you spend a day with?

    Arham_PakFan
    : Imran Khan. I would like to hear all the stories he has to tell: the games against the West Indies, the World Cup, his rivalry with Javed, his captaincy etc. I would also like to hear about his life after cricket, Shaukat Khanum and PTI.


    PakPassion.net: Is Sarfaraz the right man to lead Pakistan in all 3 formats?

    Arham_PakFan
    : Currently, I think he is. Unlike in Azhar Ali's tenure, there is no suitable long-term replacement for Tests or ODI's. Maybe in T20Is, someone like Fakhar Zaman or Rumman Raees could be tried. I believe Sarfraz should retire from T20Is or should skip minor series. He is under too much burden and should look to lighten the load. He should also look to work on his fitness which he has improved on since the NZ series. We do not have any wicket-keeper batsmen currently that could threaten Sarfaraz.


    PakPassion.net: How did you celebrate when Kohli got out?

    Arham_PakFan
    : Man oh man. I remember being so disappointed when Azhar dropped him. I think I was on the match thread here. I flung down the TV remote and it broke! I had just had Iftari and was highly energised. I was cursing Azhar and our luck. I thought 'Kohli will make us regret this'. You simply don't drop a batsman of his calibre, that too in such an important match. Thankfully Amir got him the next ball. I didn't celebrate too much, I was just relieved. Actually I couldn't believe what had just happened. Kohli normally doesn't give any second chances. Well, I guess miracles do happen.


    PakPassion.net: Give a detailed write up of your experience at NSK during the PSL 3 final.

    Arham_PakFan
    : It was an amazing experience although very tiring. This was the first big cricket match I had seen in a stadium since the Asia Cup 2008, which I barely remember. I had got 5 tickets from the website for the Waqar Hasan enclosure. The enclosure was not my first choice but the Asif Iqbal enclosure had been sold out. The information printed on the ticket said gates would close 2 hours before the match. The security forces said that security would take 4 hours to get through. So I had planned with my friends that we would reach the parking area (Urdu University in Gulshan-e-Iqbal) by 1:30 max. Naturally, we got late and reached the parking area around 3:15. I feared we were too late. We passed all the security measures, got to the shuttles, reached the drop-off point (opposite Expo Centre), walked to the stadium, cleared more security and were on our seats by 4:15. Now we had nearly 4 hours to the match.

    The temperatures were higher than they'd been all week and the stadium did not have a roof. Naturally we got hungry and thirsty and along with another friend, I ventured out towards the food stalls. The stall for beverages was in demand and people were punching and shoving each other to get to the "counter". After much difficulty I managed to buy two bottles of water to discover that the friend who'd accompanied me had collapsed. He had a heatstroke and I poured some water on him to bring him back to consciousness. He was still ill but after 15 minutes, he could stand up and walk.The guard at the gates of our enclosure did not allow us to bring the water bottles up to our seats so we had to drink them there. We could not get any eatables inside either and had to eat outside.

    The performances for the opening ceremony started around 6pm and by then the stadium was nearly full. The atmosphere was amazing and I've never felt anything like it except when I was at the Santiago Bernabeu. There were loud 'Go Nawaz Go' chants when Sethi came on stage to give his speech. I couldn't even hear what he said. Sammy was a hit with the crowd and when the toss was held there were especially loud cheers for him. When the teams came on the field for the national anthem the stadium was chanting as one. It was simply electric.

    When the match itself started the crowd was into it. Every run, every wicket was cheered on. When Sammy went out to bat there was a massive roar. Everybody enjoyed when Ronchi hit the big shots. I was supporting Islamabad while everybody around me supported Zalmi, so I was under a bit of pressure when Islamabad were six down. And when Kamran Akmal dropped that catch I was extremely relieved while Kamran copped a lot of abuse from the crowd. When Asif Ali effectively finished the match with 3 consecutive sixes it was just a matter of time. Even before Faheem hit the winning shot, the fireworks had begun. After the fireworks show (which was good I must say), most people began to leave. The Islamabad players took a lap of honour around the stadium and I hurried down the stairs to catch a close look at them. I saw all of them and recorded a video. A short while later the Peshawar players also did a lap of honour but unfortunately I wasn't able to get them on video.

    Around 12:00 am we left the stadium and decided to go directly to a friend's house in Gulshan, since we hadn't parked at the parking area the shuttles were going to go to. We thought travelling in the shuttles would waste our time. So we did not catch our shuttle which was in hindsight a rather stupid decision. We decided to call an Uber or Careem. Turns out none of us had mobile data and there was no Wifi nearby. All shops near the stadium were closed and we couldn't find an empty rickshaw. After half an hour sitting in the middle of the road at 12:45 AM we finally found a bus and climbed in. They charged us a fare of 100 per person which was a lot for the short distance we needed to go to (till NIPA chowrangi). But we paid up because we didn't want to get stuck and there was no other available transport. Then when we got off at the bus stop we found a rickshaw which we used to reach our destination. We reached there around 1:15 AM and after dinner we left immediately to our homes. So I was out since 10:30 AM and reached back at 2:00 AM.


    PakPassion.net: Wasim Akram or Waqar Younis and why?

    Arham_PakFan
    : I did not watch either as I was too young when they retired. So I will base my answer on stats and opinions. Both are legends and were absolutely fantastic bowlers, but I would choose Wasim Akram. Unlike Waqar, he was a left-armer and that alone brings variety into any attack. He was an amazing bowler and he was a pretty useful batsman as well, as is evident by his stats.


    PakPassion.net: Favourite non-Pakistani cricketer and why?

    Arham_PakFan
    : Currently it has to be Virat Kohli. He is absolutely brilliant. He is the best all-formats batsman in the world, though I believe Steve Smith edges him in Tests. His fitness is top notch and his routine is amazing. He has played many match winning innings for India and his brilliance has won them many matches. He is always the prize wicket for bowlers. His stats are ridiculous. But he is not perfect and there are some areas he needs to work on e.g his Test stats in England. He can be immature on the field and needs to improve his behaviour.

    I also have a soft spot for Daren Sammy, for obvious reasons.


    PakPassion.net: Virat Kohli or Joe Root and why?

    Arham_PakFan
    : Kohli, comfortably. Root is a batsman with a high ceiling and great natural ability but until now he has never really fulfilled his potential. We all know his issue of converting fifties into big innings. His away stats are not that impressive. Kohli is superior to him in Tests and absolutely blows him out of the water in LOIs.


    PakPassion.net: Will Babar Azam ever become an ATG?

    Arham_PakFan
    : He certainly has the capability. He is probably the most talented Pakistani batsman we have seen in 10 years, but that talent won't mean anything if he does not work on his shortcomings. He needs to develop his power hitting and shot range for LOIs. He also needs to improve his game on the first class level. He has a poor Test average after playing a considerable amount of games, so he needs to go back to the domestic level. But he won't improve by playing on those rubbish domestic pitches, so I think he should try and get a good county deal. In LOIs he will feast on poor attacks but he will have to play well against all opposition in all conditions to be considered an ATG batsman. Sometimes I feel he gets under too much pressure and is tied down. But he will hopefully improve with time.


    PakPassion.net: When will we see international cricket restored in Pakistan?

    Arham_PakFan
    : I think the smaller teams will tour now for short series e.g a couple of ODIs and T20Is. The big teams i.e England, Australia and India will not tour for a long time. Regular international cricket (4-5 tours a year with full series) will take another 5 years at the very least.


    PakPassion.net: What other interests do you have besides cricket?

    Arham_PakFan
    : I am also a football fan and I support Real Madrid. I like to watch television series, read fiction and listen to songs. I also like swimming and running. I go to jog in the nearby park for an hour once a day. I enjoy hanging out with my friends and do so at least twice a week, once with old friends from school and once with newer friends from my A level college.


    PakPassion.net: Who is your role model?

    Arham_PakFan
    : My role model is my paternal grandfather (Dada). He literally rose from nothing to become the CEO of a large bank. He was born in the early 1930's in Gujrat, British India, in a poor family. His mother died when he was only 7. His father abandoned him a short while after. My grandfather lived with his elder sister and an aunt. At the time of partition, my Grandfather travelled to Madras (now Chennai) with nothing except his sister and lived there in bad conditions. They travelled to Karachi in 1952. My grandfather started a job in a small company while completing his education. He then moved to a job as a clerk in a bank, while still his education wasn't finished. He kept getting promotions. 40 years later he became the CEO. He served his bank for 50 years in various positions. He had nothing, he studied under a single streetlight, out on the road. He is also one of the kindest people you'll ever meet. He has been retired for quite a long while now but employees from his bank still visit us regularly. He rarely got angry and was always very patient. He loves all his kids and grand-kids immensely. Unfortunately he has had Alzheimer's for the better part of 2 years but still he is a very kind, loving man.


    PakPassion.net: Your favourite book, TV series and movie respectively?

    Arham_PakFan
    : My favourite book series is A Song of Ice and Fire, although it is still incomplete and probably will never be finished. It is brilliantly written by George RR Martin and has many intricate details that are mentioned once or twice but prove pivotal. Several story-lines take place in different parts of GRRM's world, but they are all connected. The characters are complex and multilayered. I learned about the series from the Game Of Thrones, which is based on the books. I watched the series and then read the books.The books were honestly much superior although most fans would prefer the series because it is relatively simpler.

    I only started watching TV series recently but my favourite up till now is Breaking Bad. The development of the characters is amazing and what makes it better that it's on a small scale, no world changing events. We get to know a lot about the main characters and root for our favourites. The world in Breaking Bad is not divided into good and bad and there is no black and white.

    My favourite movie...hmm that's a tough one. I think Fight Club.


    PakPassion.net: Your favourite food dish?

    Arham_PakFan
    : There are many to choose from and my preference changes over time. I consider myself a foodie and I like desi food a lot. I love Paneer Reshmi Handi and also like Peshawari Karahi. Biryani is also a favourite. My favourite snack item has to be bun kabab from Burns Road. It is unparalleled. I like Katakat from Noorani Kabab House (a popular restaurant), Nihari from Javed Nihari and garlic mayo roll from Hot and Spicy.


    PakPassion.net: What are your plans going forward?

    Arham_PakFan
    : I am still not sure about my higher education. I plan to remain in Pakistan and I am preparing for university tests. I did not apply to LUMS, but I gave the IBA test without any preparation and scored highly, narrowly missing out on the cut-off in the Maths section. I will give the entrance test again in July. I am also thinking about doing CA or ACCA but they are second options as of now. If I do ACCA or CA, I will not have the social life of a Uni student.


    PakPassion.net: Who is your favourite poster and why?

    Arham_PakFan
    : There are a lot of fantastic posters over here and it is very difficult to choose from them. There are many posters here whose views I normally disagree with but I still respect. However, if I must select one poster as a favourite, I would choose @MMHS. Even as a non-Pakistani, he knows more about our domestic cricket and cricketers than most Pakistanis. His knowledge of cricketing history is second to none. He knows about the nuances of the game. He is like a cricketing encyclopedia. Even though I don't always agree with his opinions, I don't dismiss them. He is one of those posters whose posts I always stop to read.

  2. #2
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    Good read and a fascinating recount of the PSL final. Also, Happy Birthday!

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by AssassinatedDevil View Post
    Good read and a fascinating recount of the PSL final. Also, Happy Birthday!
    Thank you

  4. #4
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    Good read and nice interview

  5. #5
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    Interesting read.

  6. #6
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    Good read and happy birthday.

  7. #7
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    Good one. Happy birthday and good luck with your studies!

    Also, thanks for answering my question.

  8. #8
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    Why do you plan to remain in Pakistan? Please ignore if for any personal reasons.

    I for one always encourage young ones in my circle to explore global academic/job opportunities.

  9. #9
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    Nicely done. A fun read.


    "Preventive war is like committing suicide for fear of death" ~ Otto Von Bismarck

  10. #10
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    Excellent interview and a great read.
    @Arham_PakFan
    Thanks man for the mind words. It's my privilege to be part of PP community and honor to be mentioned.

    Keep posting.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by BreadPakoda View Post
    Good one. Happy birthday and good luck with your studies!

    Also, thanks for answering my question.
    Thanks

    Quote Originally Posted by BreadPakoda View Post
    Why do you plan to remain in Pakistan? Please ignore if for any personal reasons.

    I for one always encourage young ones in my circle to explore global academic/job opportunities.
    Yes the reasons for not going abroad are personal.Until a few months ago I had planned to go abroad(Canada or the UK).But because of unforeseen events I have to stay back in Karachi.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arham_PakFan View Post
    Thanks


    Yes the reasons for not going abroad are personal.Until a few months ago I had planned to go abroad(Canada or the UK).But because of unforeseen events I have to stay back in Karachi.
    Ok. Take care, bro.

  13. #13
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    Top interview. One of my favourite posters. Stay blessed

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by ataullah View Post
    Top interview. One of my favourite posters. Stay blessed
    Thanks for the kind words.

  15. #15
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    Good read

    Your process to get into the stadium was certainly smoother than mine!


    #MPGA

  16. #16
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    good read though could not read it for busy schedule.

  17. #17
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    Good interview from a good poster.

  18. #18
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    Nice interview, glad you had an amazing experience at the NSK.

  19. #19
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    Thanks everyone for the kind words.

  20. #20
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    Good read and a very nice interview.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by BreadPakoda View Post
    Why do you plan to remain in Pakistan? Please ignore if for any personal reasons.

    I for one always encourage young ones in my circle to explore global academic/job opportunities.
    They then stay in a foreign land and we complain of a brain - drain

  22. #22
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    Good read, always enjoy his posts.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pakpak View Post
    Good read, always enjoy his posts.
    Thank you and likewise

  24. #24
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    Nice read; second best member interview i have read here


    We will never surrender. We win or we die. And don't think it stops there. You will have the next generation to fight; and after the next, the next.

    OMAR MUKHTAR

  25. #25
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    Good interview. Especially the match experience part.

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