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I wish to see Shadab Khan lead Pakistan one day: Saeed Ajmal

Saeed Ajmal is the bowling coach of Islamabad United led by Shadab.

Saeed Ajmal and Shadab Khan
Saeed Ajmal and Shadab Khan. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

Islamabad United, the most successful franchise of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) with two crowns, now eye their third title in the T20 tournament which is set to kick off in Karachi on February 20. The first match of the fifth edition of the tournament, which will be staged entirely in Pakistan, will feature Islamabad and Quetta Gladiators, the defending champions.

Islamabad players were undergoing practice session at the Diamond Cricket Ground in the national capital on Tuesday where bowling coach Saeed Ajmal was also present. He assisted the cricketers in not just honing their bowling skills but also on batting, fielding and physical fitness.

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Ajmal, who made his debut for Pakistan at 31 and went on to pick 447 wickets in seven years that he played, spoke to Cricket Pakistan on the occasion and said Islamabad have brought together a set of strong players and are confident of doing good in the upcoming edition of the PSL.

Islamabad have a strong squad, says Ajmal

“We have a strong squad for the upcoming season of PSL. As a coach, I will try to bring the team back on to the winning track. All the players in the team are like my kids and are my favourite,” the 42-year-old Saeed Ajmal said. The former off-break bowler also praised leg-spinner and Islamabad captain Shadab Khan saying he has the qualities to escort Islamabad to their third PSL title.

Saeed Ajmal also said that he wants to see Shadab lead Pakistan one day. “Shadab Khan is an excellent player and I wish to see him lead Pakistan one day. Leading Islamabad United in the upcoming PSL season will do a world of good to his confidence,” Ajmal further added.

Shadab made his international debut in 2017, the same year that Ajmal retired, and in just five Tests, 43 ODIs and 40 T20Is, the 21-year-old all-rounder has scored six half-centuries and picked 119 wickets. Meanwhile, all-rounder Faheem Ashraf praised Ajmal’s coaching and said the players were learning a lot under him for the upcoming season. “It is an honour to represent Islamabad United and we are learning a lot under the coaching of Saeed Ajmal,” teh 26-year-old said.

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