Hanif urges PCB to retain Sarfaraz for ODIs

Wicketkeeper-batsman’s exploits impress former Pakistan great.

Nabeel Hashmi August 16, 2014


Legendary batsman Hanif Mohammad has advised the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and the team management to retain wicketkeeper-batsman Sarfaraz Ahmed for the upcoming one-day series against Sri Lanka after his superb display in the ongoing Test series.

The 27-year-old is currently Pakistan’s highest run-getter in the series with 210 runs in three innings at an average of 105.00, which includes a maiden Test ton and two half-centuries.

“Sarfaraz’s approach in the Test series is refreshing and he certainly deserves to be retained for the one-day series as well,” Pakistan batting great Hanif told The Express Tribune.

“Of all the Pakistani batsmen, only he has looked calm and hasn’t been troubled by any bowler. The team management must retain him because he has been Pakistan’s most consistent and best batsman on the tour.”

Sarfaraz has not been included in the original one-day squad for Sri Lanka, with selectors preferring Umar Akmal for the shorter format.

The 79-year-old Hanif, whose profile boasts a record Test innings score of 337 and a first-class knock of 499, added that as Sarfaraz has played aggressively in the five-day format, he can be a great addition in the 50-over matches as well.

“Sarfaraz has played at a very high strike-rate which we don’t normally see in Test cricket. In both Tests so far, he has scored run in very tough situations and his attacking play could benefit Pakistan in ODIs.”

Management pondering over Sarfaraz

It has been learnt that the team management has discussed the possibility of retaining Sarfaraz as well.

Head coach Waqar Younis has discussed the idea with fellow coaches and team officials after the wicketkeeper’s gutsy performances.

“If the touring management feels that someone needs to be retained, then they are authorised to do so and the PCB will take care of his expenses because the hosts look after only 25 players of a touring team,” explained a board official.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 17th, 2014.

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