Waqar Younis names youngster who could become Pakistan’s Ben Stokes
In an interview to Pak Passion, Waqar Younis recognised Faheem Ashraf as someone who can become Pakistan’s Ben Stokes.Updated: Jan 03, 2020 14:48 IST
Pakistan legend and current bowling coach Waqar Younis backed injured seamer Faheem Ashraf to take up the allrounder’s responsibilities for the team, once he regains fitness. Ashraf has been out of the team since Pakistan’s T20I series against Sri Lanka in Lahore in October last year. The seamer recently displayed signs of form when he played for Central Punjab in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy final against Northern. He returned with a five-wicket haul in the first innings, and then picked up another in the second innings to help his side win the title.
Ashraf also scored 119 runs in three matches for Central Punjab, at a strike rate of 90 and an average of 59. In an interview to Pak Passion, Younis recognised Ashraf as someone who can become Pakistan’s Ben Stokes.
“We wanted to have him around for the recent Sri Lanka Test series, but he was injured. We would love to have the luxury of an all-rounder in the Test team who can give us that fourth bowling option, especially when you have a young pace-bowling attack. Look at England with Ben Stokes who is batting at number 5 or 6 and is a complete bowling option,” the former speedster said.
“It’s very handy to have someone like Stokes in your Test team with both bat and ball and we are searching for that option. Faheem has been around the squad for a while now and we want to get him fit, to work on his batting too and fill that all-rounder’s spot if he can,” he added.
Meanwhile, the players of Pakistan cricket team will undergo fitness test at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) on 6 and 7 January, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) announced on Friday. “All the available centrally contracted players will attend the two-day testing, which is aligned to their contracts. Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Amir and Shadab Khan, who will be occupied with their commitments in the Bangladesh Premier League, will undergo the tests on 20 and 21 January,” the PCB statement read.