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Imad wants Pakistan to reclaim No 1 spot in T20 rankings

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KARACHI-All-rounder Imad Wasim cannot wait to get back on the field saying he wants Pakistan to reclaim its top spot in the International Cricket Council (ICC) Twenty20 rankings through the series against England this summer.

Imad, who scored 267 runs in 43 T20s, said Pakistan wants to reclaim its top spot in the ICC T20 ranking through the series. “We want to regain our top position in T20s. I want to see Pakistan among top three ranked sides in all formats. My personal goal is to perform well and improve my ranking as bowler and as an all-rounder. But more important is to win the series because England is one of the best sides in the world,” he added.

Imad said he was looking forward to team’s tour to England, for three Tests and T20s, as he would return to his routine life. The 31-year-old, who scored 952 runs in 53 ODIs, said that the tour was important for players as it was the first tour following the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown. “I am very eager to be back on cricket field. It has been a long time, not only for us but for all sports persons. They all want to play their sport and want to get back on the field,” he was quoted as saying.

The all-rounder was a regular feature in Pakistan’s white-ball squad and would likely be named in 25-member squad. “Obviously, for cricket and cricketers, it is a very important tour, as we are getting back to our life and routine which is very important. The thing is, every cricketer wants to play, whether closed doors or with crowd.”

The forthcoming series will be played in a bio-secure environment under fresh guidelines to avoid the spread of Coronavirus. The guidelines included a prohibition on using saliva, a practice which almost every bowler follows to shine the ball. According to Imad, it will be difficult for bowlers to restrain themselves from this habit.

“It is very difficult because it’s a habit to use saliva on the ball but we will have to respect the ICC’s decision. Obviously it is going to be difficult but once you know that someone else’s life can be in danger then one will be more mindful,” he said.

Imad, who bagged 42 wickets each in 53 ODIs and 43 T20s, respectively, said: “During the lockdown, I spent time with my family and also increased my training to keep me fit. These are hard times and it is important to keep yourself fit physically,” he said. According to a tentative plan, Pakistan would play the first Test in Manchester on August 5, followed by next two Tests in Southampton on August 13 and 21, respectively. All three T20s would be played in Manchester on August 28, 30 and September 1.

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