Crescent Kashmir

Saqlain upbeat about Pakistan’s chances of sweeping WI series

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LAHORE: The prevailing hot weather conditions in Multan aren’t a concern for Saqlain Mushtaq. Instead, the Pakistan head coach is eyeing a clean sweep of the West Indies when the three-match One-day International series begins next week.

Pakistan finished their preparations for the series here on Saturday, a day before leaving for Multan, and Saqlain was rather upbeat about his team’s chances.

“The West Indies are coming with full preparations,” the former off-spinner told reporters, talking about Nich­olas Pooran’s side which is completing an ODI series against the Nether­lands. “However, we are working on our different plans and we will try to win it 3-0.

“The players have worked very hard and are implementing the plans prepared by the team management. Of course, the weather in Multan is very hot but the training methods have been devised keeping that in mind. Professional players have to deal with all kinds of weather conditions.”

Saqlain has been at the helm since last year’s Twenty20 World Cup in the UAE, where Pakistan were losing semi-finalists.

The West Indies series marks Pakistan’s first assignment since Australia’s historic tour of the country earlier this year and Saqlain said that during the interim period, players had earned some well-earned rest.

He was also hoping pacer Hasan Ali, who has seen his form fluctuate, would be raring to go against the West Indies after sparkling during his stint at English county side Lancashire.

“Hasan is a match winner and has proved that on several occasions during his career,” Saqlain said. “He is looking fresh and would give his best against the West Indies.”

Published in Dawn, June 5th, 2022

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