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Fakhar Zaman targets lengthy international career with Pakistan

Fakhar Zaman targets lengthy international career with Pakistan
Fakhar Zaman is eager to make debut for the Pakistan team.
©REUTERS / Action Images

Up and coming Karachi batsman, Fakhar Zaman has stated that he dreams of having a long lasting international career with Pakistan.

After having been introduced to cricket during his time with the Pakistan Navy, Zaman has made huge strides in the game since making his first-class debut in 2013.

Currently, Zaman has played 24 first-class matches and has 1512 runs at a healthy average of 40.86 with three hundreds and 10 fifties.

His record is even better in the 50-over format where he has amassed 955 runs from 20 matches at 53.05 with three hundreds and six fifties while batting at a strike rate of 93.62.

Zaman has also proved his credentials in the shortest format of the game, hitting 595 runs in 20 matches while also scoring a century in the format along with three fifties.

In an exclusive interview with PakPassion.net, Zaman disclosed that his cricketing idol is Australia’s legendary wicket-keeper batsman Adam Gilchrist.

“Adam Gilchrist is my all-time favourite batsman.

“He was an absolute joy to watch when batting and I loved the way how, whatever the situation, he would play his natural attacking game and counter-attack the opposition bowling.

“I’m also a huge fan of AB de Villiers and Kumar Sangakkara who are both superb batsmen and what I particularly love about their batting is their ability to be able to perform at any level and in every format.

“There is so much one can learn from watching these greats.”

A major chunk of Zaman’s success came in the previous domestic season and the 26-year-old attributes it to the training methods he adopted after being inspired by watching the England Lions team train during their series against Pakistan A.

“It’s difficult to pinpoint one specific reason for my good form last season.

“However, when I was selected for a Twenty20 series against England Lions for Pakistan A, I watched the England Lions training sessions closely and realised that cricket has changed and that I needed to change also.

“When I returned to Pakistan I changed my training methods from quantity driven to quality driven sessions.

“I feel that worked for me and I have reaped the rewards of that change of training style.”

Despite his strong record in the shortest format, Zaman was not selected for the inaugural season of the Pakistan Super League (PSL).

Though he was quite surprised by his exclusion from the PSL, Zaman is hoping that he can be included in the future editions of the tournament.

“Yes, it was a huge shock not only for me but also to a lot of my team mates and to many of the coaches in Pakistan.

“I did well in the domestic Twenty20 tournament in Pakistan and also scored a hundred against Peshawar so yes I was very surprised when I was ignored for the Pakistan Super League.

“Perhaps the reason was that I never did well in the matches that were televised in the domestic competitions.

“Some players who have a batting average of ten in twenty over cricket were selected but I was ignored.

“Anyway, these things happen and there’s nothing I can do about it, but it was disappointing.

“However, who knows, maybe I might get picked for future PSL tournaments and in addition I wasn’t the only player who was surprisingly ignored for the PSL.”

Pakistan’s recent failures in limited overs cricket have seen the resignation of the head coach Waqar Younis while the Pakistan Cricket Board has dissolved the selection committee and is looking for a new coach.

With an eye on making his international debut for Pakistan, Zaman is happy with his preparations for ongoing domestic season.

Furthermore, Zaman affirmed that when he does get a chance to represent Pakistan, he will do his best to cement his place in the side for many years to come.

“I’m working hard for this upcoming domestic season and preparations have been going well.

“I’m currently playing in a Twenty20 tournament in Peshawar and that has gone very well so far.

“As far as the last season is concerned, it has gone now so one should forget about that.

“Yes, it went well but this season is already in my sights.

“Everybody wants to play for their country, that is the aim when you start playing cricket and I am no different.

“My aim is to play for Pakistan soon and not just play a few matches and be forgotten.

“My dream is to play for Pakistan for many years.

“At the end of the day I have to perform, score runs, impress the selectors with my batting and attitude and then leave it to the selectors.

“There’s a lot of international cricket coming up later this year and I hope to be part of that.”

Pakistan’s next international assignment is their tour of the United Kingdom between July and September, which will be followed by a campaign to West Indies followed by tours to New Zealand and Australia towards the end of the year.

© Cricket World 2016