Sarfraz Ahmed admits Sharjeel's absence from the squad is a blow

Pakistan's Sarfraz Ahmed
Pakistan’s Sarfraz Ahmed. (Photo credit OLLY GREENWOOD/AFP/Getty Images)
Umaima Saeed
Umaima Saeed

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After Pakistan’s Sharjeel Khan was acquitted for encouraging spot-fixing in the second edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL), he was justifiably handed over a ban by the PCB. Pakistan’s limited-overs captain Sarfraz Ahmed admitted that the loss of Khan is a blow to his side but hopefully six newcomers picked in the squad in the upcoming tour of the West Indies will fill the void.

Sharjeel had emerged as a potential talent up the order for Pakistan in the past 1 year, but during the first week of the PSL, he was suspended by the Pakistan Cricket Board. “It’s saddening when you lose some players who are perfect for the setup,” said Sarfraz while talking to reporters at the National Cricket Academy in Lahore. “Sharjeel was the type of player who we needed as he was perfect for the contemporary run-and-gun style of cricket.”

Sarfaraz said that to lose a player of Sharjeel’s caliber is a bitter blow, but his team is prepared to overcome that. “He isn’t with us anymore so of course it will affect us but I have full faith in the newcomers and they will translate their domestic form at international level.”

The skipper also preferred to talk about the dropping of Azhar Ali from the squad. He said that the decision to drop Azhar from the team doesn’t mean he won’t make a comeback.

Sarfraz was also quick to signal a warning in the direction of Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz to better their game in the Caribbean as the pace duo hasn’t delivered mark worthy performances on their recent tours.

“We have talked to our senior pacers [Wahab and Amir] that they now have enough matches under their belt and need to start winning matches for Pakistan,” said Sarfraz. “And I’m sure they will do just that.” he concluded.