What’s the story?
Ahead of the eagerly awaited clash between the arch-rivals, Pakistan batsman Fakhar Zaman has sent out a warning to Indian bowlers. Eager to give his best in the high-octane clash, the 27-year old has expressed readiness to apply Brendon McCullum’s advice in the Champions Trophy.
“Everyone is looking forward to the tournament. For me, personally, it's the first big tournament and I am aiming to give my best. We have been practicing hard since we arrived here, indoors and outdoors, we are well prepared and looking forward to the tournament. I want to give my best in the match; everyone wants to perform against India. I don't have any particular bowler as my target and I will play every ball according to merit”, Zaman told Geo.tv.
On the experience gained from the Pakistan Super League, he affirmed, “Brendon McCullum’s advice helped me a lot and I'm trying to apply it in every match I play. I’m now ready for some ‘dama dam mast qalandar‘ in the ICC Champions Trophy.”
In case you didn’t know...
Zaman is a left-hander who is capable of adapting himself to different positions in the batting lineup. In the early phase of his international career, he has played three T20Is so far. All of those appearances came against West Indies in the recently completed trip to the Caribbean.
The 2017 edition of the Pakistan Super League provided a platform for Zaman to showcase his potential. Representing Lahore Qalandars, he got the opportunity to share the dressing room with former New Zealand skipper and explosive batsman Brendon McCullum.
Eight matches in the season yielded him 177 runs at an average of 22.12 and strike-rate of 138.28 on dicey pitches in the United Arab Emirates.
He is not the first Pakistani player to make a statement ahead of the match against India. Skipper Sarfraz Ahmed set the tone by rallying his troops to play their ‘natural game’. Pointing to his past record against Virat Kohli, pacer Junaid Khan cautioned the Indian captain of his potency in seam-friendly conditions.
Zaman did not get the chance to bat in Pakistan’s first warm-up game against Bangladesh on Saturday. He will be hoping to play a part in the second practice match against Australia on Monday. It remains to be seen if he gets the nod for the all-important contest against India on June 4th at Edgbaston.
Even though he is yet to feature in an ODI, Zaman has exuded confidence in his ability to negate a versatile Indian bowling lineup. If he is selected for the high-pressure match, it will be interesting to see how he fares with the bat.Published 28 May 2017, 20:30 IST