Another global event, another plan to have an Imran Khan like retirement. Mohammad Hafeez is the latest Pakistan cricketer who will (perhaps) attempt to go out on a high by winning the World T20 scheduled for October this year.
“That is my plan but let’s see how it goes,” said Hafeez.
“Playing for Pakistan is always an honour. I’m looking forward to, in my humble capacity, to add value to this team. As a sportsman, you have to deal with different scenarios that can take you in different directions. But I have always kept myself positive and have played all training matches with a positive attitude,” he added.
He also reminded everyone that he was the highest scorer in the past two T20 series, he was involved in.
Asked playing at home, he welcomed the Bangladesh team and hoped that fans would come out in large numbers.
“Playing in front of a home crowd is a huge honour. We have been deprived of this honour for the past many, many years and had not had an opportunity to taste this unique thrill. I welcome the Bangladesh team to Pakistan and hope that cricket lovers will be drawn to the stadium and will grace us with their presence.
The 39-year-old assured that he will give his full support to new captain Babar Azam.
“Winning is the thing that gives a captain his confidence. Babar Azam is now our captain and is an outstanding player and a human being. It is now on us to win so that we can give [him] confidence. It is very important that you share your experiences. I am not the type of person to intrude on another person’s domain. But if everyone seeks my advice or guidance, I am available,” he said.
When asked whether he was angry about the captaincy snub by Lahore Qalandars, Hafeez said that it was the decision of the franchise and he is happy to be part of the team.
“Not really. At the end of the day, it’s the franchises domain and they know better to whom they have to give this responsibility to. For me, being a part of the team is the most important thing. I will always want that whichever team I am playing for, wins, and will do my best to contribute towards that. That is more important than any other thing,” Hafeez concluded.
The veteran was recently banned by the English Cricket Board from bowling, which applies to International Cricket as well. However, according to reports, the off-spinner will undergo testing next week in a bid to clear his name and start contributing to the team with his bowling.
The three-match T20I series against Bangladesh starts on 24th January.