LAHORE, Pakistan: Pakistan One Day Captain Sarfraz Ahmad said on Friday that the tour of the West Indies was very important for the team in World Cup perspective to qualify for the mega event.
“For us it is a very significant tour as success in the tour will strengthen our chances for playing the World Cup without playing the qualification rounds,” he told news men at the Gadaffi stadium in Lahore on the last day of the training camp for the buildup of the team for the tour of West Indies.
He was of the view that a high quality display in batting, fielding and bowling can be the key to success in the tour of Caribbean.
“What is needed is to make lesser mistakes and to show consistency in the tour to attain desired results,” he said.
“It is a sour reality that during the last two years our performance in the one day matches is not up to the mark and solid efforts have been made to overcome gray areas in the training camp,” he said.
The captain termed the department of fielding very important and said during previous series the fielding was not to the required standard and during the camp special emphasis has been laid to bring improvement in it.
“It was seen that our batsmen scored 290 to 300 runs in a one day but poor fielding and dropping of catches poured water on their efforts of and we lost matches due to this aspect,” he added.
To a question, Sarfraz said in the one day matches Pakistan will be having a balanced pace attack with the presence of Muhammad Amir, Wahab Riaz, Junaid Khan, Hasan Ali and Faheem Ashraf and expressed the hope that these bowlers will live up to the expectations by giving a good performance.
“We need to bat well, bowl well and field well to win a game,” he said.
The skipper said batting has a combination of youth and experience where experienced ones like Shoaib Malik, Muhammad Hafeez, Kamran Akmal and Ahmad Shahzad will be there to share most of the responsibility with young players learning from them and showcasing their talent in a better way.
Sarfraz rejected a questioner that with the presence of veteran wicketkeeper batsman Kamran Akmal he was under added pressure.
“In every tour before we had an additional wicket keeper to fill the void in any urgency and Kamran has made his way in the national side by displaying superb form behind the wickets and with bat by earning distinctions in the Pakistan Super League and it is hoped that he will be a vital part of the team to play his role in team’s performance and success in West Indies,” he said.
The One Day Captain said he feels bad and saddened on the spot fixing scandal in the PSL and feels hurt on the involvement of Sharjeel Khan who was an important member of the one day team and was on his way to be part of the team in all formats of the game.
“Definitely his absence (Sharjeel) will have its impact on the combination of the team but a lot is expected from the young players to justify their presence,” said Sarfraz.
He said the team for the tour of West Indies has been selected purely on the performance of player who impressed in the domestic season as well as in the PSL. “It is a good combination which has been selected keeping in view the conditions in West Indies.”
He described his appointment as T20 and one day captain as “a big honour” for him and expressed his resolve to come up to the expectations and the faith PCB has on him.