24th May: Mumbai Indians v R. Royals, 14:30 GMT
24th-28th May: 2nd Test, Headingley
Pakistan batsman Yasir Hameed has echoed his captain Shahid Afridi's calls for Pakistan fans to come out and support their side during the two-match Test series in England and he is well aware that his side faces a tough task at Lord's and Headingley, the venues for the two matches.
"I hope we have a lot of support," Hameed told Cricket World during an MCC/Cricket Foundation event in London.
"A lot of Pakistanis live here in England, so obviously they have always supported the Pakistan cricket team," he added.
Hameed is back in contention for a Test place for the first time since he played against India in December 2007 in Bangalore and has an important role to play in the absence of the likes of Younus Khan and Mohammad Yousuf.
"I'm looking forward to the series and I was very happy to get back into the team. Now I want to do well, for the team and for my country but playing against Australia won't be easy," he added.
Australia beat Pakistan 3-0 in the Test series in Australia earlier this year, a series in which Hameed was not involved, and a tour which saw Pakistan fail to win a single international game. Already on this tour, Pakistan have taken the Twenty20 International series 2-0 and will be hoping to take confidence from those victories into the longer forms of the game.
Hameed has played in 23 Tests including marking his debut in 2003 by taking Bangladesh for two centuries in one game, and although he has faced many of the world's best bowlers, including Glenn McGrath, Shane Warne and Anil Kumble, he has never come up against Sri Lankan off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan in a Test.
He has, however, played against the veteran in One-Day International cricket, and asked to comment on Muralitharan's recent decision to end his Test career later this month, he said:
"He was a great bowler and no one can match him. I think he was great for Sri Lankan cricket and for world cricket."
32-year-old Yasir Hameed was taking time out to visit a local Chance to Shine primary school in London. He joined Year 6 pupils learning good sportsmanship in the playground and playing for an MCC Spirit of Cricket trophy, as part of the MCC and Cricket Foundation’s drive to teach ‘fair play’ at an early age.
The MCC and Cricket Foundation have teamed up to introduce the MCC Spirit of Cricket in 4,000 Chance to Shine state schools to teach children to play hard and play fair. To find out more visit www.lords.org.
© Cricket World 2010
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