Ramiz wants us to play aggressive cricket, Shadab Khan

ISLAMABAD, Sep 09 (APP): Vice-captain national cricket team Shadab Khan Thursday revealed that Ramiz Raja wanted players to play aggressive brand of cricket according to the requirements of modern day cricket.

Ramiz, who has recently become member of the Board of Governors (BoG) of Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) called the national team to the High Performance Centre at Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore on Tuesday for an agenda-setting talk. The former skipper has yet be officially elected the PCB chairman.

“In the meeting with us he [Ramiz] said he wants us to exhibit aggression and for that we’ll h have to develop a culture,” Shadab told media in a virtual press conference from Rawalpindi.

The national team will play a three-match ODI and five-match T20I series against New Zealand, who are touring Pakistan after 18 years. The ODIs are part of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League and will be played at the Pindi Cricket Stadium on 17, 19 and 21 September, while Gaddafi Stadium will host the T20Is from 25 September to 3 October.

“He [Ramiz] has been doing commentary since long and fully understands the modern day cricket. He has given us the confidence.

“Aggression is in our DNA, hence we’ll now be trying to be more aggressive. Initially, we may face somewhat failure bit if we’ll continue this culture we’ll get results in the future.”

To a question about his personal performance, he admitted that it had witnessed a decline but said that was mainly due to the injuries he suffered during the course of the time. “Before World Cup [2019] I suffered from hepatitis and then sustained injuries that affected my performance.

“But I’ll not make that an excuse. I’ll be trying to become successful as I was at the outset of my career,” he added.

He said he had spent one month in the academy with his coaches, trying to improve his bowling and batting skills.

He said he was fully fit now and striving to bowl longer spells besides staying at the crease for long duration while batting. “As I play as an allrounder I wish to deliver where the need arises and help my team win.”

To a question about head coach Misbah-ul-Haq and bowling coach Waqar Younis’ decision’s to retire from their roles ahead of crucial T20 World Cup, he said he would not comment on that it was their personal decision. However, he admitted that it was not an ideal situation for the team. “But we’ll try to make the best possible use of our available resources. Our aim is to win and we’ll keep on striving for that without ifs and buts.”

He said since the time Babar Azam had become captain, he had also tried to give confidence to the players.

Talking about Kane Williamson and some other senior Black Caps players who are excluded from the visiting side, he said it would have been better had they been part of the team as their fans in Pakistan would miss them. “But still the visiting team have eight to nine players who regularly play white ball cricket, hence, I’m hoping some really competitive cricket.

He said he was confident that Pakistan’s spin bowling department was strong enough to pose challenge to any batting lineup. The arrival of Saqlain Mushtaq, he said as interim coach would also be beneficial for the spinners as the team had been without a spin bowling coach for quite some time.

“Our goal is to be among the top three team in all formats of the game. We’ll keep on working towards that goal. It’s a process but we as a team we are confident to eventually get there.”