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  1. #1
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    "I would like to play my whole career with Mickey Arthur as my coach" : Fakhar Zaman

    An integral part of the victorious Pakistan ODI squad that lifted the Champions Trophy in 2017, 28-year-old Fakhar Zaman wrote his name in history books with a magnificent 114 in the final of the tournament against India. Since then, he has enjoyed significant success in Pakistan's Limited Over games and has now been selected as part of the Test squad for the tour of Ireland and England.

    In a recent interview, Fakhar Zaman spoke about his remarkable cricketing progress, his views on working with Mickey Arthur as coach, his message for those who do not consider him a serious fit for Pakistan's Test squad, how Pakistan intend to tackle the threat of James Anderson and Stuart Broad in their home conditions and why he feels his side will give a good account of themselves in the upcoming Test series against Ireland and England.





    PakPassion.net: It's been a remarkable journey so far for you in international cricket hasn't it?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    It has been truly an amazing journey for me. I feel really good about how my career has progressed and for that I am truly indebted to the Almighty. I wouldn’t say that it's been an easy ride as it did involve some struggle on my part, but today I have got to a stage where I am part of the Test squad and I am looking forward to doing the best I can for Pakistan.


    PakPassion.net: Did you ever think you would come so far in your cricket career?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    When starting out, I was a little overwhelmed by the idea of playing international cricket as I did feel that there was a huge gap in quality between club or grade-2 cricketers and international players, but I later realised that this wasn’t the case. I suppose, like any new player, I had my self-doubts but all of those disappeared when I started to play first-class cricket and realised what I was capable of. During those times, I also played alongside Asad Shafiq and Sarfaraz Ahmed in a club in Karachi and when I compared my game to theirs, I came to the conclusion that there really wasn’t much difference in standards and that I too was as ready for international cricket as any other player at that level.


    PakPassion.net: How would you describe the role of coaches in your development as a player?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    All throughout my career I have been indebted to coaches and mentors, right from my days in the Pakistan Navy and up to the time I became a part of Pakistan A and the senior teams. I have had some technical difficulties in the past that were spotted and ironed out by the coaches at the NCA. And it's not just the coaches but the Pakistan team management who have gone out of their way to help me out. This special treatment continues for me even today where I am given so much care and attention when I go for training at the NCA. I suppose the results of this work by the coaches can be judged by where I am today.


    PakPassion.net: Mickey Arthur has received criticism from some quarters, how do you feel about him as a coach?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    I have been playing cricket at various levels for about 10 years and I have yet to work under the guidance of a Head Coach like Mickey Arthur who looks after his players so well. What Mickey does not compromise upon is commitment by players to the team. He has zero percent tolerance for that as he believes that if one wishes to play for the Pakistan team, they need to be a hundred percent committed to all aspects of the game, regardless of it being fielding, batting or bowling. For Mickey, there is no effort below hundred percent which a player should be giving for the team. I feel that the credit for the excellent performances of youngsters in our current team belongs solely to Mickey. This is because due to Mickey’s guidance, there is simply no place for being lax about our job and we are always focused on giving our best for Pakistan. If it was up to me, I would like to play my whole career with Mickey Arthur as my coach.


    PakPassion.net: How disappointing was this year's Pakistan Super League for yourself and Lahore Qalandars?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    Of course, when one’s team ends up at the bottom of the table at a tournament, one will feel very disappointed. I was also very disappointed in the way the tournament ended for us. It wasn’t any different last year for us and this year it was a little tougher for me as I was the Vice-Captain as well. We did seem to get back into form towards the latter stages of the tournament but by that time we had lost too many games and it was all a little too late.


    PakPassion.net: So, exactly what went wrong for Lahore Qalandars this time around?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    I feel the reason we could not do well this year was that most of our batsmen were the same type of stroke makers. I believe in a Twenty20 side you need some players who can see you through the innings which is something we were lacking. Also, our batsmen were not suited to conditions in Dubai although, to be fair, we did come close to scoring 200s at some points during the tournament. I am sure we have learnt our lessons and I do hope that we will make a stronger comeback in the next edition of the PSL.


    PakPassion.net: Brendon McCullum seems to be a big fan of yours; What advice did he give to you during the PSL?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    Brendon’s only advice which he repeated many times was to play a fearless brand of cricket and to express your skills and talents without worrying too much. Apart from that, I got to learn a lot from the way he prepared himself for the game and also in the nice way he behaves with the team members, regardless of their seniority.


    PakPassion.net: How impressed were you with Shaheen Shah Afridi’s performances for Lahore Qalandars?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    I was really impressed by what I saw of Shaheen Shah. He is still young, and I am sure he will improve more as he gets older and more experienced. He has been blessed with talent and what is most exciting about him is that he can swing the ball both ways at a good pace. I am convinced that he will be a great future prospect for Pakistan.


    PakPassion.net: How does it feel to now be part of the Pakistan Test squad?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    It is an amazing feeling to know that I have been considered worthy of being selected as part of the Test squad. Ever since I started playing cricket, it has been my dream to play Test cricket and now that dream could become a reality soon. This is a very exciting time for me as in my view, the Test format is the only ‘real’ format in cricket. I have done reasonably well in the Limited Overs format of the game and now I have a challenge ahead of me to play Test cricket and hopefully I can do that well and also establish myself in the Test team.


    PakPassion.net: Do you feel you have the skills to succeed in Test cricket?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    Let's be clear about something. cricket is played with the same kind of ball and bat around the world so there is nothing special about it, as long as you have the necessary skills. The main thing about Test cricket is that you have to adjust your game according to the match situation. I will have to do this to be successful in Test cricket and I will rein in my shots, if I have to, based on how the game is going at that point. Yes, if the situation demands it and I feel confident about it, I will go in to my normal aggressive mode of cricket. At the end of the day, this is what cricket is all about and I don’t want to make bold predictions, but I am hopeful that I will be able to perform well in Tests and help my team to victory as well.


    PakPassion.net: Some believe that you aren't cut for Test cricket, what do you say to those critics?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    To all those who have been critical of my selection for Tests, I will simply ask them to spend their time in praying for my success in Test cricket rather than criticising. Obviously, everyone has their own opinion on such matters and it is possible that in their view I am not suited for Tests, but this is something only time will tell. If I succeed in this format for Pakistan, it will not only be great for Pakistan but even they will feel good about it.


    PakPassion.net: How tough will it be to play England in their own conditions and especially during early summer?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    It’s difficult for me to say anything about playing Test cricket in England as I have no prior Test experience but what I will say is that looking at our bowling strength, even our opponents will think twice before preparing wickets which could easily favour us as well. So, the swing will not be a problem for us alone but will also affect England. This is something our coaching staff have been paying attention to during our preparations for the tour with usage of the Dukes ball. I feel that we have prepared well for whatever conditions we will encounter during the series.


    PakPassion.net: Does Pakistan have the batting strength to fill in the gap left by the departure of Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan, especially on this tour?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    We definitely have the batting talent which can fill the gap left by the departure of these two great batsmen. It is very normal in all sides that players retire and are then replaced by other able players. If you look at the newer members of our Test squad like Saad Ali or Usman Salahuddin, you will see that they have been selected after some excellent domestic performances and have a good first-class record. It is our hope that our youngsters will not let us feel the absence of the retired players.


    PakPassion.net: Are Pakistan capable of succeeding against James Anderson and Stuart Broad in their backyard?

    Fakhar Zaman:
    There is still some time to go before the series begins and we are working hard to get ourselves in the right mindset for the conditions we will encounter in England. As far as Anderson and Broad are concerned, they will probably be a handful on their own pitches and we have been watching a few videos of them in our training. As the time to face them draws nearer, we will study their videos in more details to understand their strengths and weaknesses and work out a strategy to play them. I am convinced that we have the batting strength to not only play both of these bowlers with ease but also to put up big scores against them.
    Last edited by Abdullah719; 7th May 2018 at 09:17.


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  2. #2
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    Fighting talk!!
    Just what I like


    If you always do what you have always done, you will always get what you always got #improve

  3. #3
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    His mentality towards Test Cricket is Great.

    " cricket is played with the same kind of ball and bat around the world so there is nothing special about it, as long as you have the necessary skills. The main thing about Test cricket is that you have to adjust your game according to the match situation."

    Wow, this guy

  4. #4
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    Fakhar Zaman

  5. #5
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    Once a fighter, always a fighter..

  6. #6
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    After watching years of mediocre batsman with a negative mindset in Odi cricket, FZ is a breathe of fresh air. His innings in the final last year is one of the best we have seen from a PK batsman and i hope that he has a long and successful career in tests.

  7. #7
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    Brilliant.

    Play him instead of Imam or Sami the best we will get from them is 10 (60.)

  8. #8
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    Great the way he talked about mickey arthur. Mickey has been revolutionary to pak team.. and i hope his tenure get extended.

  9. #9
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    Wow man make this guy deputy captain ASAP

  10. #10
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    Very balanced interview. Disciplined and and pays his dues to the people that matter -coaches. If only he was younger!!

  11. #11
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    Yet according to some Mickey is a "fraud" who is only interested in picking up his paycheck.

    Excellent comments from Zaman.

  12. #12
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    Spoke well and really has been a good find for Pakistan.

    Very humble guy who is very determined to do well for his country.

    After the CT final where he scored a 100, he came into the press area and it was like he had just been for a game of cricket with his friends - so relaxed and calm.



  13. #13
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    Great attitude, super dude & the best bit is calling your haters to pray for u ����He’s gona win as the #WC2019 inshallah


    Waiting for the day when there will be no p....i player in a green shirt

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by GLORY OF '92 View Post
    Brilliant.

    Play him instead of Imam or Sami the best we will get from them is 10 (60.)
    Didn't Sami have a 90+ inning in his last tour to England?

  15. #15
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    Was watching Dead Poets Society and the only thing that I can say to this is "O Captain, my Captain"

    Lad's got the attitude that we need. Hopefully he'll remain the same.


    it's written. an akmal will never be a hero.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by GoUgandaCranes View Post
    Was watching Dead Poets Society and the only thing that I can say to this is "O Captain, my Captain"

    Lad's got the attitude that we need. Hopefully he'll remain the same.
    I hope this attitude can rub off onto other players in the team.

  17. #17
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    Excellent interview maybe qadir should read this but he might start attacking fakhar.

  18. #18
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    One of my favourite players.

  19. #19
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    Fakar should open in the first Test.

  20. #20
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    Good interview. Threads like these where posters like @Slog go into hiding

  21. #21
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    Fakhar is a good batsman he should go first in test match

  22. #22
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    Test cricket? I can be the man for Pakistan, says Zaman

    Pakistan’s fairytale victory in the Champions Trophy in the summer of 2017 was achieved at a time when not many experts gave them a realistic chance of making it past the group stage.

    This rise in stature of Pakistan’s ODI outfit was scripted on the back of some heroic performances by a group of talented yet inexperienced youngsters led by the likes of opening batsman Fakhar Zaman.

    Fakhar’s century in the Champions Trophy final against arch-rivals India turned the game at The Oval in his side’s favour and set him up for a fruitful international career.

    A surprise selection for Pakistan’s Test squad for the tour of Ireland and England, Fakhar, who has been regarded as a limited overs specialist, now has a new challenge ahead of him. True to his fearless style of batting, the opening batsman is unfazed about this new stage in his career.

    “Cricket is played with the same kind of ball and bat around the world so there is nothing special about the challenge of playing in different formats as long as you have the skills.

    “The main thing about Test cricket is that you have to adjust your game according to the match situation. I will have to do this to be successful in Test cricket and I will rein in my shots and, yes, if the situation demands it, and I feel confident about it, I will go in to my normal aggressive mode of cricket.”

    The experts and media’s reaction to Fakhar’s selection for Tests has been one of surprise as many feel that he does not have the wherewithal to play this format.

    It is a notion he is quick to dispel, saying: “To all those who have been critical of my selection for Tests, I will simply ask them to spend their time in praying for my success. Obviously, everyone has their own opinion and it is possible that in their view I am not suited for Tests, but only time will tell. If I succeed in this format, it will not only be great for Pakistan but even those critics will feel good about it.”

    Pakistan head coach Mickey Arthur’s popularity ratings in Pakistan shot up by astronomical levels after his side took possession of the Champions Trophy but the losses to New Zealand in ODIs as well as the whitewash in UAE by Sri Lanka in Tests have subsequently made him a figure of some criticism.

    Fakhar, on the contrary, believes that it is exactly the much-maligned management style of Arthur which has brought and will continue to bring stunning successes to Pakistan.

    “I have been playing cricket at various levels for about ten years and I have yet to work under the guidance of a coach like Mickey who looks after his players so well. For Mickey, there is no effort below 100 per cent which a player should be giving for the team.

    “I feel that the credit for the excellent performances by youngsters in our current team belongs solely to Mickey. This is because due to his guidance, there is simply no place for being lax about our job and we are always focused on giving our best for Pakistan. If it was up to me, I would like to play my whole career with Mickey Arthur as my coach.”

    Whilst Pakistan have generally been good travellers to England, playing two Tests in early summer conditions where the ball will swing and seam prodigiously will be a huge test of resolve for a largely inexperienced batting line-up but Fakhar feels that Pakistan’s bowling may come to their rescue.

    “Looking at our bowling strength, even our opponents will think twice before preparing wickets which could favour us as well. So, the seam and swing will not be a problem for us alone but will also affect the English batsmen. This is something our coaching staff have been paying attention to during our preparations with usage of the Dukes ball.

    “I feel that we have prepared well for whatever conditions we will encounter during our time in Ireland and England.”

    The scenes during the last Test at the Oval in 2016 when a beaming Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan, together with the rest of the Pakistan squad, did a victory lap after drawing the four-match series are now consigned to history books.

    The retirements of those two stalwarts have brought concerns that the new and inexperienced batting line-up will struggle against England.

    To Fakhar, the emergence of fresh new talent, however, should go a long way in alleviating any concerns about the gap left by their departures.

    “We definitely have the batting talent which can fill the gap left by these two great batsmen. It is very normal in all sides that players retire and are then replaced by other able players,” he said.

    “If you look at the newer members of our Test squad like Saad Ali or Usman Salahuddin, you will see that they have been selected after some excellent domestic performances and have good first-class records.

    “It is our hope that our youngsters will not let us feel the absence of those retired players.”

    Whilst Fakhar may feel confident about his side’s chances in the upcoming Test series against England, it is a fact that the likes of James Anderson and Stuart Broad will be more than a handful for Pakistan’s batsmen to handle on their own turf. But if Fakhar’s infectious optimism is to be believed, the preparations made by Pakistan ahead of this tour should see them tackle head-on the challenge posed by the English pace duo.

    He said: “As far as Anderson and Broad are concerned, they will probably be a handful on their own pitches and we have been watching a few videos of them. As the time to face them draws nearer, we will study their videos in more detail to understand their strengths and weaknesses and work out a strategy to play them.

    “I am convinced that we have the batting strength to not only play both of these bowlers well, but also to put up big scores against them.”

    https://www.thecricketpaper.com/feat...tan-win-tests/

  23. #23
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    Would love to play under Arthur forever, says Fakhar

    LONDON - Pakistan’s swashbuckling opener Fakhar Zaman believes if he is given the opportunity, then he would like to play under head coach Mickey Arthur till the end of his career. Under Arthur, appointed the head coach of the Pakistan cricket team in May 2016, the Men in Green bagged their first-ever Champions Trophy last year and Fakhar believes it is all because of his work ethic.

    “I have been playing cricket at various levels for about 10 years and I have yet to work under the guidance of a head coach like Mickey Arthur who looks after his players so well,” Fakhar told PakPassion. “What Mickey does not compromise upon is commitment by players for the national team. He has zero tolerance for that as he believes that if one wishes to play for the Pakistan team, they need to be a hundred per cent committed to all aspects of the game — be it fielding, batting or bowling. For Mickey, there is no effort below hundred per cent which a player should be giving for the team.”

    He continued by crediting Arthur for the performances that he was able to extract from the youngsters in the last two years. “I feel that the credit for the excellent performances of youngsters in our current team belongs solely to Mickey. It is due to Mickey’s guidance that we are always focused on giving our best for Pakistan. If it was up to me, I would like to play my whole career with Mickey Arthur as my coach,” said the left-handed batsman.

    Pakistan are currently touring the UK for a one-off Test against Ireland followed by two-match series against England, where they will be facing the threat of veteran English pace duo of James Anderson and Stuart Broad, and Fakhar believes they will work out a plan against them. “There is still some time to go before the series begins and we are working hard to get ourselves in the right mind set for the conditions we will encounter in England,” said the southpaw. “As far as Anderson and Broad are concerned, they will probably be a handful on their own pitches. As the time to face them draws nearer, we will study their videos in more details to understand their strengths and weaknesses and work out a strategy to play them. I am convinced that we have the batting strength to not only play both of these bowlers with ease but also to put up big scores against them.”

    Fakhar’s selection in the squad for the tour of England came under criticism because of his fast-paced batting style, and the 28-year-old has said that the players need prayers now more than scrutiny.

    “To all those who have been critical of my selection for Tests, I will simply ask them to spend their time in praying for my success in Test cricket rather than criticising. If I succeed in this format for Pakistan, it will not only be great for Pakistan but even they will feel good about it,” he said.

    https://nation.com.pk/12-May-2018/wo...er-says-fakhar

  24. #24
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    Batting on 52* against Leicestershire in warm up game today


    Quote Originally Posted by Mamoon View Post
    Don't see us ascending from 7th/6th in the near future. 5-0 in England and South Africa awaits us, we will be lucky to even draw one match.

  25. #25
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    Added some intent to our batting line up today.

  26. #26
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    Just give him a debut at Lords please Mickey.....

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by babajee View Post
    Just give him a debut at Lords please Mickey.....
    Who should he drop?


    Be brave and be fearless, and for God's sake, stand up for yourself.

  28. #28
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    Last edited by hadi123; 19th May 2018 at 18:47.


    For the latest updates on Cricket, follow @PakPassion on Twitter

  29. #29
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    Sad that its not likely that he will play at Lord's!


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  30. #30
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    A chance for Fakhar to play in the Headingley Test?


    For the latest updates on Cricket, follow @PakPassion on Twitter

  31. #31
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    Well MA likes him but seems it's between Zaman and Salahuddin to replace Babar Azam tomorrow.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Abdul View Post
    Who should he drop?
    Guess we can drop the likes of as they continue to fail.

  33. #33
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    Should be Pak's opener in all formats.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rayyman View Post
    Should be Pak's opener in all formats.
    Truer words have never been spoken.

  35. #35
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    Irresponsible way for him to get out,I imagine Mickey will be furious.He has underachieved so far in T20I’s.

  36. #36
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    Out again after a quick start.Deceived by the spinner.

  37. #37
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    Quickfire 50 for Fakhar Zaman today.He should look to carry on.

  38. #38
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    Good knock today, out for 61.

    He should look to be more ruthless though.


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  39. #39
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    Another decent innings from him today.Made 47,providing most of the runs early on.

  40. #40
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    50 for him again today.This time against Australia.

    50 off 33 deliveries.

  41. #41
    Debut
    Jul 2011
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    India
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    Careful what you wish for.

    IMO Mickey has made Pakistan a side that isn't reliant on one or two senior players and has developed a culture of discipline and fitness but Pakistan will take time to reach the level of top 3 sides atm which doesn't mean they can't beat anyone on their day.

    I just hope a bad world cup doesn't lead to Mickey's exit which often is the case in Pak set-up.

  42. #42
    Debut
    Nov 2015
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    Karachi
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  43. #43
    Debut
    Oct 2004
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    15 Thread(s)
    This guy continues to impress - doesn't matter where and when he plays. Really needs to be put in Tests sooner the better and helped out if he needs working on his technique


    For the latest updates on Cricket, follow @PakPassion on Twitter

  44. #44
    Debut
    Dec 2016
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    I know he is from Mardan but isn't it odd for him to be promoting a rival PSL side?

    Can't imagine LQ will be too impressed.


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