Pakistan opening batsman Imran Farhat has said performance was his only barometer, insisting that he was not selected in the team on recommendation.
The left-handed batsman, who has played 40 Tests and 53 One-Day Internationals, has often been taunted because of his close relation with former Test cricketer and chief selector Mohammad Illyas.
However, Farhat said that being the son-in-law of Illyas has never been the reason for his inclusion in the team.
“This is a notion I want to clear,” said Farhat on the sidelines of the training camp at the Abbottabad Cricket Stadium.
“He (Illyas) has his own status but I never took advantage of my relation with him. It is in front of everyone that whenever I made a comeback it was always on the basis of my domestic performances. You can take my performance in the current season as an example.
“Nobody helps me there on the pitch. I perform well and that is how I get selected,” said the opener, who also scored a triple century in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy earlier this year.
“I have my own goals in cricket and I never discuss it with him. If I perform it’s good and if I don’t, I never winch.”
‘Exclusion never frustrated me’
The opener, who was never an automatic choice for the best part of his 12-year career, said he never got frustrated being in and out of the team.
“Cricket is my bread and butter.
“My objective is to keep striving and I will continue to play till I remain fit whether it’s international, domestic or league cricket.
”My primary target is to contribute to the team as much as possible whenever I get selected. However, the snub from the national team has never been a source of frustration for me.”
Speaking about the upcoming ICC Champions Trophy, the seasoned opener said all the batsmen were aware of their responsibilities and hoped for an improved show.
“All of us are getting the best preparation possible for the tournament. We are training in conditions that are very similar to that in England.
“The presence of Javed Miandad has also helped us a great deal in improving our overall performance.”
With openers Mohammad Hafeez and Nasir Jamshed in the team, Farhat said he will have no issues if he is demoted down the batting order.
“I am much more experienced now and can manage myself at any position. I am ready to play whereever the team management wants me to play.”
Published in The Express Tribune, May 7th, 2013.