Waqar wants to be part of title winning team

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LAHORE-Pakistan cricket team bowling coach Waqar Younis has said that he is keen to be part of the management, whenever the team may win a major ICC title.

In a virtual conference with sports journalists here on Monday, Waqar said: “I am very keen to see the Twenty20 World Cup held this year in Australia even if slightly delayed. Whenever I represented my country as a player or as a coach of the national team, I always desire to see the team win a major ICC title. That is why this World T20 is so important for me and the team. I would like to be the part of a management, where we can win a major title.”

The former captain said that short break couldn’t disturb their plans and preparations but if the gap prolongs, it can be problematic. “I hope cricket will resume soon after the coronavirus pandemic comes to an end. The need of the hour is to stay at home and stay safe. I am in constant contact with the bowlers, who are doing their workout and fitness programmes at home, which is good for them to remain fit.”

To a query regarding resuming cricket behind closed doors, he said it is too early to talk about it as situation is still very serious across the globe. “For me, cricket shouldn’t resume now as this is difficult time and we should not think about cricket now. May be after things get normal, we can but right now, it is too early to think about cricket.”

When this scribe asked Waqar about the quality and standard of cricket in this year’s Pakistan Super League (PSL-5) and what inspired him the most, he replied: “The entire PSL 2020, which was played so far, inspired me a lot. Every commentator present during the mega event of the country was so impressed and every visitor, including international players were so impressed by the love, respect and hospitality rendered to them by Pakistanis.

“I assure you all that more international players will come to Pakistan in next season to enjoy the level of cricket and our great hospitality. They will also enjoy more competitive, challenging and enthralling PSL next year. As far as salient features of this year’s PSL are concerned, I would say Shaheen Shah’s accurate bowling, Lahore Qalandars’ strong comeback and consistent performances of Multan Sultans and some of Karachi Kings inspired him a lot. Dilbar Hussain of Lahore Qalandars also bowled with great pace and venom and performed well during the event. So seeing all this, I can say that future of PSL and Pakistan cricket is quite bright,” he added.

When reminded about statement of South African reliable batsman Hashim Amla, where he termed Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, Younus Khan and Muhammad Yousaf as his most admirable Pakistani cricketers, the former pacer thanked the South African saying, “Although I didn’t play with Hashim Amla during my playing days, yet I would like to say a big thanks to him as he himself is a very nice person and one of the finest cricketer.”

About untimely retirements of fast bowlers Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz from Test cricket to prolong their careers in shorter formats, he said it did impact their Australia tour as their experience was missed. “The retirements of the two pacers – Wahab and Amir - provided opportunities to the youngsters who have impressed with their performances. Misbah-ul-Haq also spoke about it but we can’t stop the players from their decisions, but a policy in this regard can prove beneficial for players as well as the PCB.

“We have now good backup and a pool of pacers, who are doing well for the national team. We need four to five mature pacers for the longest format while in white-ball cricket, we need more and more bowlers, who may share the workload and fortunately, we have a good pool of fast bowlers while in this year’s PSL, I also identified some pacers, who can be added to the pool,” Waqar concluded.

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