Sarfraz emphasises importance of long format cricket

Pakistan skipper says T20s don’t allow players time to develop fitness

Sports Desk February 18, 2018

Pakistan skipper Sarfraz Ahmed believes playing in the shortest format, T20s, doesn’t help in developing fitness for playing cricket and backed chief selector Inzamamul Haq’s claim that all players need to participate in one-day and red-ball cricket, even if it is in the domestic circuit.

The 30-year-old was of the opinion that T20s don’t provide you with time to focus on fitness due to the reduced gaps between matches.

“When you play the shortest formats for a long period, then you don’t necessarily have the fitness to play in a 50-over or Test match. You also train according to the format you’re playing more. So Inzi bhai is right,” said Sarfraz.

He further explained how T20s cause fitness problems. “The shorter format gives you less time to train, but when you’re playing in the long format, you develop a more concrete fitness regime. Inzi bhai is right that the more you play the longer format of cricket, the more you improve your fitness,” he explained.

On PSL’s third edition

Pakistan Super League (PSL) will stage its third edition starting from February 22 in the UAE and Sarfraz was all praise for the event for helping in bring cricket back to the country.

“Two matches are being held in Lahore this year, the final will take place in Karachi, and PSL is one of the biggest reasons that international cricket has returned to Pakistan,” he said.

The wicketkeeper-batsman then explained how PSL has reinvigorated the cricket fever in Pakistanis. “We [Quetta Gladiators] recently played against Islamabad United in Rawalpindi and a huge crowd came in to support us even though it was an exhibition match. So, PSL did become a means for the return of international cricket to Pakistan. We are playing three games this year; I hope next year half of the tournament or even the full tournament can be played in Pakistan,” he said.