'Pehle ek toh poori kar lein': Pakistan star's savage reply to 'should we follow India in making two teams' question
The Pakistan star had a blunt response when a reporter asked him if the cricket board should follow India in making two teams for different formats.
Over the past year, Team India fielded a number of different combinations – under different captains – across all formats of the game. In addition to first-team captain Rohit Sharma, multiple players like Hardik Pandya, Rishabh Pant, Shikhar Dhawan, and Jasprit Bumrah have led the Indian team in different formats. At the start of 2023, both Rohit and Virat Kohli were absent from the T20I squad with Pandya taking over the captaincy role in series against Sri Lanka and New Zealand.
While there were many who lauded the Indian cricketing setup for its squad depth, few were also critical of the team not maintaining a set combination of players. The rotation policy was hugely criticised after India faced a 10-wicket defeat in the semi-finals of the T20 World Cup against England last year.
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Nevertheless, the Indian team has drawn admirers in the cricket fraternity for its robust talent across all three formats, and Pakistan's star wicketkeeper-batter Kamran Akmal had a rather savage response when he was asked if Pakistan should also have more than one set of players for international cricket.
When the reporter asked Akmal if Pakistan should have two sides, Akmal said, “Pehle aap ek toh poori kar lein (Firstly, you need to complete your first team),” during an interview with paktv.tv.
Further talking on the same, Akmal insisted that the scrapping of department cricket affected the Pakistan setup. “You could've made 2-3 teams before 2018-19. Your domestic cricket was there. Department cricket was so rich in Pakistan. I know this because I've played there for years. Since we topped it, making even one team is difficult,” said Akmal.
“If having six teams was so beneficial, Fawad Alam wouldn't have madea comeback after so many years.”
Pakistan had reached the finals of the Asia Cup and T20 World Cup last year under the captaincy of Babar Azam, but failed to lift the trophies on both occasions. In Tests, Pakistan endured a dismal run at home in the 2021/23 World Test Championship as they remained winless in eight matches against Australia, England, and New Zealand.